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Coolant Question

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Old 07-18-2013, 03:33 PM
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Coolant Question

I know what your all thinking: "Oh great! Another coolant thread!"

Been researching this all day:
http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/96...formation.html


So if I'm reading this correctly, its recomened to use regular coolant along with SCA's in our trucks? And checking the SCA's after 15-20K?

Just wanting to make sure I understand, was going to change the coolant at some point in my truck, and although a HD ELC coolant sounds great on paper I don't want to put somthing in my truck that will cause trouble later. Cause it says for engines built after 2/99.

I haven't even checked the SCA level yet, the last record I have of anything done to the cooling system was the installation of a 203 thermostat about 40K or so ago, I'm assuming (based on how tedious I could tell the PO was) that the coolant was changed. It looks good and clean, never really fluctuates in level.

So my questions are:

What strips are recommended to test SCA levels? What is the proper level/charge?

Also as I understand it they don't make the FW-15 or whatever its called any more and its been replaced by VC-8, so is that the appropriate stuff to put in then?

And as long as coolant "looks" clean, can I just get away with adding a charge to it? At least until I get closer to winter, I think I'm going to do as many fluids as I can before the snow starts flying (both diff's, trans, and maybe even P/S, Brakes, and coolant)

Sorry If I'm asking something that I'm sure had been asked 1000 times,
I guess I'm an over thinker/over cautious/paranoid, considering I waited 5 years to get this truck, I want to keep it on the road for a long long time! I know it didn't make it to 357k without some maintenance along the way. Thanks so much! Love this site and all the info, I have learned much in my short time hanging around here.
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Old 07-18-2013, 04:20 PM
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I get my coolant strips from these guys: ACUSTRIP ACU2050-3 Series (and that's the product you want, too, I think). they sell it in lesser quantities - individually wrapped 3-packs or something that are super-cheap - which is good since they expire within a year or so, or something.

call them up and tell them what you need it for and they'll get you the right thing. I think for our trucks with conventional SCA's the Nitrite test is all that we care about.

as for the type of coolant, I (and a lot of other guys) run 'FleetCharge', made by Peak (I think, but don't quote me on that). its pre-dosed with SCA's so no need to buy/add additional stuff right away. I got mine from Tractor Supply for half the price of NAPA and other autostores.

then, if you have a coolant filter, you can get filters with time-release SCA's in them. if not, adding one is cheap, easy and good for the engine...
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Old 07-18-2013, 06:00 PM
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I'm not sure if I have a filter in the system or not. I don't think I do. I will definatly look into those strips.

The thermostat was put in at 311k (I checked my records I got with the truck and I'm at 357k now) that is the only thing I can see with anything to do with the cooling system. So I think changing the coolant might be in order.

I think I might have gotten some strips (they were in he center console out in the open when I got the truck. So they pry aren't any good. But if they are then at least the po (I hope) was checking the levels. I'll get some strips and see where I sit. Thanks for the info!

Also what about prestone hd antifreeze? It says sca charged and is purple. I actually work at a garage with my dad so I can get stuff at cost. Just wondering and thanks again!
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Old 07-18-2013, 06:34 PM
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Never heard of the prestone, but if its sca charged, it should be good. It would probably say for heavy duty diesel applications on it somewhere.

A coolant filter is a very good, not real expensive idea to look into.
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Old 07-18-2013, 09:28 PM
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fleetgaurd strips are what i use at work if i recall, any strip that will test the nitrate level will do. basic green coolant will work with the additive, or even a filter with the time release, as long as its charged with sca's you should be fine, i personally run extended life Powercool, make sure you flush all the old coolant out before you switch.
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Old 07-22-2013, 01:21 PM
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Ok I have some test strips coming, what is the proper level of nitrate for the system? Thanks!
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Old 07-23-2013, 10:16 AM
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Got the results of my coolant test in:

They all checked out. Might need a little sca, I'm going to test it again in a little while. But The ph, concentration, and nitrate all checked out. I can breathe a sigh of relief! I would say it was between the 800 and 1200 (closer to the 1200, with 1200 being ideal) I'll have plenty of strips and they don't expire till 9/14 so I should be set for a while.

Thanks everyone for their help.

Another question, what can I do to help protect the strips? Can I refrigerate them or does it really matter? Thanks again.
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Old 07-23-2013, 10:16 AM
 
 
 
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