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Old 11-23-2001, 04:26 PM   #1
Fubaru
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Default Engine coolant Q

The coolant reservoir in my subie looks like it could use a refreshment. A few questions:

Can I just top it off with tap water + Prestone?
Manual recommends the "Subaru" brand coolant + "soft" water.
It also specifies "never mix different kinds of coolant"
I was thinking about just adding Prestone + DI water, 50/50 mix.
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Old 11-23-2001, 05:46 PM   #2
dave1rr
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Just use distilled water and the coolant of your choice. Change it every year or two and you'll never have a problem.

Dave
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Old 11-23-2001, 08:41 PM   #3
jay25RS
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Quote:
Originally posted by dave1rr
Just use distilled water and the coolant of your choice. Change it every year or two and you'll never have a problem.

Dave
I'm not trying to nitpick, but just in case, remember, don't mix the longlife pink coolant like GM uses with normal coolant as it causes REALLY BAD things to happen.

-Jason
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Old 11-23-2001, 10:37 PM   #4
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jay25rs, I'm pretty sure that although GM owns a piece of FHI, the coolant used by Subaru is not that long life dexcool stuff (yet).

Just curious, what happens to the coolant system when you mix the pink & green antifreeze?
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Old 11-23-2001, 10:52 PM   #5
jay25RS
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Fubaru:
I realize that Subaru doesn't use dexcool stuff yet, I was just cautioning to not add dexcool to our system.

When you mix the two, I've heard that it creates a black hole and sucks all of the technology out of our cars.


Seriously though, I think that it corrodes something including headgaskets and creates major problems.

-Jason
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Old 11-24-2001, 01:47 AM   #6
Richard L.
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Default

Here is a good thread on Dexcool: "Click Me"

Please read through it to learn about the problems associated with using Dexcool.

--
Richard
http://www.whitetyphoon.com/impreza/
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Old 11-24-2001, 11:20 PM   #7
cruzito
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Question

I'm just wondering, is there a drain plug on the block itself?
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Old 11-25-2001, 12:00 AM   #8
mr2guru
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yes there is a block drain for the coolant in the heads. One for each side. If you have a WRX the one on the passenger side is used for the Oil cooler, either supply or return I am not sure. But the one on the drivers is not used and is a plug with a 14mm allen socket in the center. This one can also be used for the block heater. But alas the Universal block heater's cord is not long enough to reach the little cut out in the bumber. As was designed to go in the passenger side plug. I found this out I am not sure if there is a drain on the center section of the block.


Just a little info
Happy Motoring
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Old 11-25-2001, 01:37 AM   #9
Richard L.
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cruzito, on your 2000 RS, there are two engine block drain plugs, one behind the oil filter and one behind the thermostat housing.

Here is a pic of the passenger's side one:



Here is a pic of the driver's side one:



The service manual says to remove both drain plugs when draining the coolant. I don't think a 14mm allen socket will fit since the drain plugs are around 13mm.

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Old 11-26-2001, 03:04 AM   #10
cruzito
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Default Thanks

Thanks Richard L, and Mr2guru for the info and picture, I'll go ahead and change the coolant right now. Totally, appreciate it you guys are awesome.
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Old 11-26-2001, 10:17 AM   #11
vvk
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Default DEX-COOL

I think that people who are afraid to use Dex-Cool are missing the point. You have to be a morron to believe that any coolant will last 5 years and/or 150k miles in a car. That's a ridiculous claim. You'll be lucky if it lasts that long sitting in its container. That's, by the way, the biggest advantage of Dex-Cool. The green stuff has a shelf life of only 18 months. You have to wonder if it set in the store longer than that before you bought it, plus you have to use it immediately. Dex-Cool is supposed to last 8 years unopened. This is a real advantage. If it sits for years in a local WalMart, you can still be reasonably sure that it's fresh when you buy it.

3 years and 30k miles is already pushing it, even with a long-life coolant. I would not keep any type of coolant longer than 2 years in my car. The green stuff should be changed every year, the red (or blue) stuff can go for 2 years. It takes a few hours to change it and it's not a big deal.

I have heard from many professionals that Mercedes antifreeze is the best. It's more expensive, but you get what you paid for.

Oh yeah, don't forget to change your brake fluid once a year, too.
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Old 11-26-2001, 08:31 PM   #12
Alan
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vvk wrote:
Quote:
The green stuff has a shelf life of only 18 months.

I don't know where you got that idea. Sealed ethylene glycol antifreeze has a VERY long shelf life. See the Prestone FAQ where it specifically states the stuff is good for MANY years.

Now I suppose the enviromentally friendly stuff might well be less stable - but for normal antifreeze, just use it.
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Old 11-26-2001, 10:34 PM   #13
Delhi
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Default how much?

How much is the total volume capacity of the our 2.5l engine holds? Do I need 2 cans to drain them?

Thanks. And Do I need to jack the car up?
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Old 11-27-2001, 01:33 AM   #14
Richard L.
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Delhi, total capacity for the 2.5L is 6.2 quarts. What did you mean by two cans? You will need a large drain pan to catch the used coolant. You should not have to jack up the car. However, you might have a tough time trying to remove the two engine block drain plugs.

You will need to get a gallon of coolant and a gallon of distilled water for refilling the radiator and the engine block.

--
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Old 11-27-2001, 12:49 PM   #15
Delhi
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thanks rich.
what i meant was since there' two drain hole, won't u need 2 catch pan then?
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Old 11-27-2001, 01:02 PM   #16
Richard L.
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You don't really need two catch pans. Just drain the radiator first, then move your catch pan under the passenger's side drain hole and drain it, then move your catch pan under the driver's side drain hole and drain it. Having two catch pans might be more convenient, however.

--
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Old 11-30-2001, 10:37 AM   #17
vvk
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Default DEX-COOL

Look at this article for explanation of DEX-COOL "problems":

Click Here

As far as Prestone, I have had problems with it and I have read bad reviews. Once I had a water pump fail two weeks after flushing the system and filling with regular Prestone.
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Old 11-30-2001, 02:22 PM   #18
AndyHidley
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It more than likely was the flush that ruined the "aged" H2O pump, not the new antifreeze
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Old 12-01-2001, 02:58 AM   #19
jhonas
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Default

What do you think about those flush kits where you hook up a garden hose into a little fitting on one of the coolant hoses, and open the radiator cap and let the water flow through while the engine runs?

That was a little long winded, hopefully you can make sense of it.

-Matt
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Old 12-01-2001, 10:40 PM   #20
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My neighbor buys old cars and fixes them up and sells em.. He use to use the flush stuff and said that everytime he used it on a "tired" water pump he always ended up replacing it cause it would "go" .. Now he just drains the old antifreeze and puts in water and a box of arm and hammer baking soda, lets it run for awhile and flushes it out good with lots of water and then puts in new antifreeze.....

Also here is a fact for you guys... Keep your radiator filled to the top.. If its not to the top then air is in it and it'll cause corrosion/rust . If its full it wont happen
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Old 12-02-2001, 09:55 AM   #21
Peaty
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I'm sure the plug on the passenger side is 14mm, I've removed it to install an oil cooler. It's a bugger to get out and even harder to find a 14mm Allen.

http://www.scoobymods.com/mods/impreza/oilcooler.php

With a WRX you have the cooler already so you only have to remove the hose from the plug/nipple that's there. Which is a lot easier.

On the drivers side it would be easier to just drop the thermostat housing rather than getting that plug out.
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Old 12-02-2001, 03:16 PM   #22
fatVdub
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so what brand of coolent do you guys recommend? im stick'n' to the green stuff...Dexcool stuff won't hurt....if you flush the entire system...GM uses it, prob.'s are with their cooling design...VW uses it in MOST and all of their passat's amd GTI's( info. from a tech. buddy that works for VW in Reno)...but as far as brands go what the consensus(sp)??
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Old 12-02-2001, 10:44 PM   #23
Richard L.
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I personally use regular green Prestone mixed with distilled water.

--
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Old 12-04-2001, 10:27 AM   #24
vvk
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Default block plugs

14mm allen is usually available from neighborhood hardware stores. Get one at least 6 inches long on one side. Also get a long steel pipe to be used as a lever. Works like a charm. It's probably better to have another person to help you. They can turn the pipe while you are holding the allen key in the plug. Wear eye protection.

I just did one of my Imprezas this Sunday. It was a piece of cake. Actually, the plugs were not so tight because this is the second time I change coolant in this car and I used Loctite with Teflon on the plugs last time. Initially they were very tight, but I used a 4 foot pipe for leverage...

The best "green" antifreeze I've found is Zerex by Valvoline. It's cheap and available at Wal-Mart. They also list chemical content on the container, so you know what's in it. As far as I can tell, it does not contain silicates, which is a Japanese engine requirement. Contains phosphates, though, so it's not for my SAAB.

I've been using DEX-COOL in all my cars for a while, without any problems. Just did my inlaws' Cavalier, too. Original DEX-COOL came out clear and new-looking. It's been in there for 5 years and 115K miles. Stupid cooling system design, though. You can tell that they heavily borrowed from OPEL, but did not borrow everything. The bleeding hole is too small, so you have to wait forever for the air to come out. Very, very poor design.
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