Engine Antifreeze Coolant – What does it do ? – Why do you need it ?

Engine Antifreeze Coolant - What does it do ? - Why do you need it ?
Engine Antifreeze Coolant - What does it do ? - Why do you need it ?

Engine antifreeze coolant, plays a very important role, in keeping your cooling system functioning efficiently.

So, the main purpose of, engine antifreeze coolant is, to prevent water from freezing. While at the same time, raising its boiling point, to prevent overheating.

Above all, antifreeze is not used by itself. But, by adding the correct amount of good water, we now have engine coolant. In other words, this is what we actually put, in our cooling system.

So, engine antifreeze coolant, is just another name for, properly mixed antifreeze and water. This new mixture, adds further protection to your engine including:

  • Protecting your engine from, corrosion
  • Aiding in, heat transfer
  • Lubricating, the water pump
  • Preventing, scale build up

Even more, it is very important to have, the correct antifreeze, in the right concentration.

Engine Antifreeze Coolant
Engine Antifreeze Coolant

Cooling system problems, are now responsible for  about 60% of engine failures. The color of antifreeze can be green, orange, red or even blue. So, most of the time coolant should look, a vivid green and it should, feel slippery, like oil. If it feels gritty to the touch; then you should get the cooling system flushed and replace the antifreeze.

What Does Engine Antifreeze Coolant Do:

  • Prevention Corrosion
  • Excellent heat transfer
  • Protection from freezing
  • Prevention of scale build up
  • Compatibility with hard water
  • Stability at high temperatures
  • Compatibility with plastics and other materials, used in cooling systems
  • Controls foaming

So, engine designs have changed, to improve fuel efficiency and lower emissions. These demands have made, engine operating conditions, even more severe.

Buy The Best And Forget The Rest

Poor Corrosion Protection
Poor Corrosion Protection

Even when the warranty is over, it is still best, to follow the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendation. However, the antifreeze used, should at least meet minimum specifications. There are many older vehicles, which still use traditional engine antifreeze coolant. But, they still need to meet factory specifications. As a result, these coolants, are cheaper than the longer life technologies. And, do not achieve, the same corrosion protection.

Water Quality Matters

Corrosion Caused By Electrolysis
Corrosion Caused By Electrolysis

There is still one factor that can, reduce the effectiveness of antifreeze. And, that is the quality of the water. Consequently, high levels of calcium and magnesium in tap water; can lead to deposits and scale build up. So, it is advisable to use; distilled water in the cooling system, rather than tap water.

Frequently Asked Questions, About Engine Antifreeze Coolant (FAQs)

What is the difference between, coolant and antifreeze?

Antifreeze is a concentrated product, and has to be diluted. The diluted liquid, is usually called, engine coolant.

How do I find out, what type of coolant should be in my car?

The best way is to, ask your dealer or check your owner manual.

How do I find out, what type of coolant is in my car?

The color of the coolant, does not prove type or quality of the product. Therefore, the best course of action is to, drain and flush the system.

Which types of coolant, can form sludge when mixed?

Poor Antifreeze Or Hard Water
Poor Antifreeze Or Hard Water

Good quality engine antifreeze coolants, should not form sludge. In contrast, poorer quality coolants and or the use of excessively hard water, can form sludge.

I Want To Replace / Top-Up The Coolant. What Should I Use?

For replacing or topping-up, you should use the product, recommended by the vehicle manufacturer. This should be one that meets the specification, indicated by the vehicle manufacturer. Also, it is important to ensure that this is diluted, to the correct mix; with good quality water.

The Engine Antifreeze Coolant I Use, Is Too Expensive. Can I Use Something Cheaper?

So, for most people, a car is a significant investment. Therefore, purchasing a good quality antifreeze, will help to protect your investment.


So, you’ll need to have; the cooling system flushed and coolant replaced from time to time. And, because of its importance; it’s vital you keep a regular check, on the condition of the coolant.

Thank You !