Introduction To The Highest Rated Antifreezes and Coolants
Buying the right antifreeze or coolant for your car engine can be trickier and challenging than you think. There are actually three different types of coolants to choose from, and each is quite different from the other. (We will focus on the types of coolants later on in this guide)
When purchasing engine coolants for your car, it’s important to consider your frequency of flushing out the coolant, the types of additives you prefer in your formula, and other crucial considerations. Before we narrow down to the best coolants for car engines, let’s discuss several things about these additives.
What Is Engine Coolant and How Does Help Your Car?
Engine coolant, also known as anti-freeze is a liquid solution that’s designed to control your car’s engine temperature and taper excess heat to its radiator. It is an auto maintenance product that is consumed by internal combustion engine. However not all coolants can be used on any engine; some engines, especially the newer engine models, requires special formulas that comply with the car regulations.
A couple of years back, all anti-freeze, no matter the brand, were green. This is because it was produced with silicate as its corrosion. The coolant was mixed with water in a ratio of 50-50 and then poured into the car radiator. The antifreeze carried heat to the radiator while the engine operated, thereby preventing freezing as well as protecting the cooling system from rusting. Nowadays, there’re different types of coolants technology, and they come in various colors. They are also being manufactured in an environment-friendly nature and contain less content of propylene glycol (PG).
Let’s Take a Look At The Best Engine Coolants On Todays Market
#1 Zerex G-05 Antifreeze/Coolant, Ready to Use – 1gal Review
Zerex is a popular brand among vehicle owners. This coolant uses propylene glycol, making it safer and less hazardous to the environment. It also has low amounts of silicate additive that’s just enough to prevent rusts and corrosion inside the engine. This antifreeze doesn’t have any phosphate making it a great coolant for aluminum engines parts. Zerex reduced reliance on too much silicate and also lowered the PH level of this coolant formula to protect your vehicle from damages caused by chemical reactions.
Zerex G-05 Antifreeze is a very versatile coolant as it can be used in light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles. It can also handle extreme engine temperatures from as high as 100 degrees F to as low as -34 degrees F. It’s also much compatible with most engines, but it’s designed mostly for heavy-duty vehicle use.
The Zerex G-05 Antifreeze has accumulated an average rating of 4.7 stars and is the original full-chemistry when it comes to newer Daimler/Chrysler, Ford vehicles, and other diesel engines. It can be termed as one of the best radiator coolant thanks to its Hybrid Organic Acid Technology formulation that combines fine conventional and organic acid-based chemistry to deliver amazing protection against corrosion and rust. This technology also reduces inhibitor depletion.
Unlike other antifreeze brands, the Zerex G-05 coolant is Cummins 14603 approved including Ford WSS-M97B51-A1, MS 9769, John Deere, Daimler-Chrysler, GM 1825M, MTU, and much more. Zerex G-05 Antifreeze is ideal for petrol and diesel engines, and therefore serves a wide range of vehicles.
With a protection of up to 150,000 miles or a flushing age of five years, the low PH and low silicate formula reduce corrosion and rust on the inside.
For a low price, you get a credible formula from a trusted brand that will help your vehicle cooling system run longer, cool, and stay rust-free. Grab a gallon or a couple of them from Amazon.
#2 Prestone AF888 Dex-Cool Antifreeze – 1 Gallon Review
The first name of this coolant is enough to tell you that this’s one of the best antifreeze in the market. Preston is a respected brand, and one of the most popular manufacturers of engine coolants and Prestone AF888 Dex-Cool is no exception. With a few additives such as low amounts of silicate content, this coolant will work well enough to protect your car radiator for the next 150k miles or five years.
It has excellent heat transfer rate thereby allowing your car to also have optimal performance. It works excellently with both light-duty and heavy-duty cars as well as trucks. It has components that contain eco-friendly and great quality engine care properties.
This antifreeze has garnered an impressive rating of 4.8 stars and is highly recommended for all vehicles, including light-duty trucks with aluminum radiators. This patented formulation boasts a concentrated blend of fine, long-lasting inhibitors, which makes it offer extended protection and performance against extreme temperatures
Grab this amazing antifreeze from one of the most loved and most popular brands in engine coolant industry. It will give your automobile a five-year service or 150k miles. It works in harmony with aluminum parts of the engine and will starve off extreme temperatures for longer and ensure better engine performance.
Ensure that your engine system is entirely clean prior to refilling it with Prestone AF888 Dex-Cool, failure to which it won’t work well.
#3 Engine Ice TYDS008 High Performance Coolant – 0.5 Gallon Review
This one of the best coolants in the market and is made by a recognized brand in the engine coolants industry. It is a high-performance antifreeze given that the chemical composition of this product consists of zero percent phosphate and is absolutely environmentally friendly. It is a biodegradable antifreeze that’s safe for the environment.
This eco-friendly formula transfer heat as high as 125 degrees F and as low as -26 degrees F. This enables your engine to go through extreme lows and highs.
The Engine Ice TYDS008 is one of the best performing engine coolants, although a little bit expensive more than other coolants on this list, we can highly recommend this product the most to drivers who are going to road racing as it’s permitted by CCS and ASRA. The propylene glycol infused in this coolant is proven sealant and eliminate water pump gasket. This infusion also makes Engine Ice TYDS008 very effectual in high horsepower vehicles.
It has garnered an average rating of 4.7 stars and is among the best coolants for cars, considering its non-toxic, biodegradable, and phosphate-free formulation. This formula protects your engine from freezing up and tends to reduce operating race temperatures. The Engine Ice TYDS008 has been engineered well to keep your operating temperatures at peak performance by not allowing power loss because of excessive heat.
The Engine Ice TYDS008 has generated many positive reviews from actual users, with many claiming that it’s the best antifreeze they’ve encountered. It lives up to its claims and promises, unlike most coolants on the market. It also requires a less complicated flush procedure, while requiring a lot distilled water frequently. We can highly recommend it to any driver looking for track-friendly coolant.
#4 Star brite Star-Cool Premium Synthetic PG Engine Coolant – 1 gal Review
Just like full synthetic motor oil keeps your vehicle more lubricated and running smoothly than conventional oil, is the same way synthetic coolants help to keep automobile engines cooler as compared to most conventional coolants, and StarBrite Star-Cool Premium Synthetic is no exception. The PCT additive helps it keep your car engine cool for a longer time. This makes it great for higher horsepower vehicles.
Besides, this synthetic coolant exceeds all ATMSM and OEM specs. Pinholes, microscopic cracks, and lakes that develop in your engine over time can be sealed with this auto coolant. It’s a great addition for a car that’s under heavy stress. This synthetic coolant from StarBrite is made to deliver great results so much more accurate as it combines unique poly organic additives with non-toxic glycol base to create the most advanced coolant.
This coolant has garnered an incredible average rating of 4.9 stars. Star Brite has worked hard in collaboration with world’s best coolant additive formulators to come up with this antifreeze which outperforms conventional engine coolants. This coolant helps car engine develop peak horsepower.
This 64-ounce or one-gallon coolant allows a no-trouble operation, eliminating the mixing, mess, and measuring, unlike most coolants out there. This is the best synthetic coolant that consumes diesel or gasoline. All in all, the Star-Cool Premium Synthetic is among the best and top-rated car coolant that effectively reduces engine temperature faster than other coolants.
#5 MaxLife 719009 Antifreeze – 1 Gallon Review
The last product on our list of best coolants for cars is MaxLife 719009 Antifreeze. It has garnered an average rating of 4.9 stars. This unique formula has been engineered to work with virtually all vehicles including light-duty trucks. It has Alugard Plus technology, a special additive that allows various chemistries to work seamlessly. MaxLife 719009 Antifreeze is the only coolant with this feature on this list.
The Alugard Plus feature also provides corrosion and rust protection. This antifreeze claims to be the most effective coolant on the market with Organic Acid Technology, making it compatible with IAT and HOAT chemistries. It promises protection from cold weather freezing and also hot weather boil-overs. It can lubricate gaskets and seals, along with a long-life formula. It greatly helps in to extend the life of higher-mileage vehicles by stabilizing the engine temperature, despite driving and climate conditions. It’s among the best antifreeze coolant that’s capable of effectively transferring heat from your car engine to the radiator. Another notable thing about MaxLife 719009 Antifreeze is that it can be used in all car models.
It’s also perfect to use in street-sport motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, off-road motorcycles, utility vehicles, street-cruiser motorcycles, street-motor scooters, snowmobiles, and much more. It comes at a competitive price, and hence it’s a better deal for all those people looking for high-quality coolants. MaxLife 719009 Antifreeze proves its efficiency to providing cooling and protection to a wide range of vehicles.
Types of Engine Coolant
There are three types of antifreeze;
1. IAT or Inorganic Acid Technology
IAT was the first engine coolant and was used from the early 1920s-1990s. It contains silicate and phosphate that serves as the coolants corrosion inhibitor. It’s dyed bright green and sometimes yellow. It should be flushed after every 36,000 miles or after every two years.
2. OAT or Organic Acid Technology
Unlike IAT, this type of coolant doesn’t have silicate and phosphate to inhibit corrosion of engine. Different manufacturers use different chemicals to provide protection against corrosion and rust. It’s also known as Extended Life Coolant or Long Life Coolant because it lasts longer than IAT. However, it’s slightly incompatible with older engines as these engines are made of brass and other metals while OAT is made to protect aluminum- the main metal used to make car engine nowadays. OAT coolants should be replaced after every five years or every 150,000 miles. It comes in different colors, but the typical OAT often comes in shades of orange.
3. HOAT or Hybrid Organic Acid
Just as the name suggests, HOAT is crossover or hybrid between IAT and OAT. It uses silicate and phosphate as corrosion inhibitors, but it also uses OAT additives such as nitrites. It’s compatible with virtually all car engines as it has the components of both OAT and IAT engine coolants. This antifreeze also reduces the proneness to rusting and corrosion in brass, copper, and aluminum. It should be replaced after every five years or every 150,000 miles.
Fundamental Things To Keep In Mind When Using Engine Coolants
Don’t mix types and colors
Your standard green engine coolant typically used in older cars is geared towards preventing corrosion on steel parts, whereas the newer ones are meant for aluminum and other alloys. If you mix the two, cooling will not take place as both can neutralize one another. This can also cause more mess if they turn into a gel and restrict flow.
Follow the ratio
Some coolants are meant to be added to the engine straight out of the bottle, whereas others need to be diluted with water in a ratio of 50-50. Having a mixture that’s too weak or too strong can lead to poor engine cooling.
Water is better than nothing
If your car runs low on coolant, maybe from a leak, and there’s no repair facility or gas station in sight, adding water to it can sometimes help you for short term. However, you need to keep checking the condition of the engine.
The Bottom Line
Choosing the best coolant for your car engine always boils down to the kind of car model you have, the chemical compound you would like to have, and finally how well it will help your engine cooling system. A stable engine will give you peace of mind while on the road and enable your car hit peak performance.