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A year with Suby Coolant Conditioner: simply crap-ulous!
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Has your rig been swilling this stuff?
for 1 year
63%
 63%  [ 12 ]
for 2 years
21%
 21%  [ 4 ]
3 years
10%
 10%  [ 2 ]
longer
5%
 5%  [ 1 ]
Total Votes : 19

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bluebus86
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 26, 2010 9:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i know the dexcool coolant has had some recalls, it had bad reactions with some plastic parts (the vanagon has lots of wetted plastic) i would not use the dexcool at all in any of my cars. even GM had probelms on there cars and dexcool was factory fill (i think GM got out of some lawsuits when obama took it over)

dexcool I know had to be reformulated at least once to help sove this problem, not sure if it is solved or not

for me only VW apporved blue antifreeze (buy from Van Cafe) and distilled water in my restored vanagon. I still use Prestone extended life green coolant in my lesser cars (non VW). i purged the dexcool from my triumph when i found it gel'ing in the radiator. that was one of several probelms reported with dexcool, it would form a gel like sludge if mixed with other coolants (made additives liek the subaru stuff too)

my vanagon will get a fresh fill or OEM VW coolant + distilled water every two years at minimum. it will last a long time that way.

go with VW stuff and you should be ok. do mix types of coolant dispite labling that says it is ok, it cuase lots of probelms for folks with the original dexcool.
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tencentlife
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 26, 2010 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would change the title of this thread if I could but it's been up too long to do so. The title is misleading, it suggests that the goo is the result of using the Radweld when they are not related. I suspected there might be a relation when I began the thread, although I was careful to remain agnostic throughout because their mere existence within the same cooling system was never sufficient evidence to establish any causative relation. Since then I have seen and learned enough to have no doubts as to what is what.

Don't know what I would change the title to if I could but it might be something like "Lookit! Goo! Yuk!". Let's hear your suggestions.
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Hmmm, provincial much?:
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"I wouldn't go much on whats written on the samba, they love a "theory" and rarely ask any Europeans what is actually correct."
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tencentlife
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 26, 2010 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I found nothing like what 10 cent found in the OP-mine was nice and clean everywhere


And you wouldn't, because the two things are not related. I'm not singling you out, you're just offering another valuable datapoint, but I've already made it quite clear earlier in this thread exactly what the granular goo is, it has nothing to do with the Holt's Radweld (that's what the Suby stop-leak is). I was very confident of this determination two years ago and my further experience has only confirmed it beyond any doubt. The goo is old excess silicate coating freed by the switch to Dexcool, which does not plate metals with silicates for protection the way conventional non-OAT antifreezes do.

The Holt's Radweld is a stopleak, primarily, now that we know who makes it it is easy to see their literature about it (in case the product name didn't tell you all you need to know) . In the engine at the start of this thread it accounts for the brown coloring but is otherwise unrelated to the goo.

If you run Radweld in an engine with only conventional antifreeze, or in an engine that was thoroughly acid-flushed prior to switching to an OAT product, there should be little to no freed silicates to accumulate in stagnant areas of the cooling system. If you use it in an engine where only OAT products were ever used, there will be zero silicates because there were never any in the system to begin with, OAT products do not use silicates to plate metals.

In any case it is the state of the cooling system and the antifreeze used that affects whether freed silicates are circulating as solids or not, the Radweld has nothing to do with it. The jury's been in, gave their verdict, took the leftover sandwiches and went home a long time ago.

To answer inlet's question directly, the radiator in this van went on working pretty well for the three years since the goo was produced. It was already on a downward path before then, being twenty years old and seeing over 250k miles go under it and several different types of coolant thru it by that point, as evidenced by a very small loss of efficacy at very low roadspeeds in very hot weather, but was and is still quite serviceable. There was no precipitous loss of efficacy following the switch in coolant that produced the goo, just the continuation of the gradual slide that had already been occurring. That radiator has seen 50k miles of heavy daily year-round use since then and is still in my van, but I stole that van's engine two weeks ago to put in my Syncro so for now it's parked.

And, by the way, that engine had its top end freshened up during the switchover, and the AMC heads with 50k miles of hard use that had only ever seen Prestone Dexcool had no surface pitting, and no cracks starting between the valve seats. Excellent heads, and despite the ignorant rumors parroted by so many, an excellent antifreeze product that delivers superior performance in this aluminum engine.
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Hmmm, provincial much?:
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"I wouldn't go much on whats written on the samba, they love a "theory" and rarely ask any Europeans what is actually correct."
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connorsvw2
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 26, 2010 5:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Having been running this stuff with Dexcool in my 2.5 Subie conversion for the past 7 years, and having just pulled the heads for new head gaskets, I found nothing like what 10 cent found in the OP-mine was nice and clean everywhere, with just a whitish diffuse coating which dried to a fine, powdery consistency.

As I understand it, this stuff was pushed to prevent/solve early SOHC 2.5 EXTERNAL head gasket leaks (coolant to outside of engine), not internal head gasket leaks like what I had (combustion gas to coolant).
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madspaniard
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Inlet wrote:
A "VW builder", he installed a 2.1 / rebuilt AMC heads. I don't see myself going back for any type of work as it took forever to get anything done, he is 3 hours away and what we agreed on wasn't completed. So I'm on my own here.


using this information you just provided I would say you need to do the head gasket again, it does not sound like a reliable person and you already have a leak. Sorry about it.
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Inlet
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A "VW builder", he installed a 2.1 / rebuilt AMC heads. I don't see myself going back for any type of work as it took forever to get anything done, he is 3 hours away and what we agreed on wasn't completed. So I'm on my own here.
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Tomasz
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Inlet wrote:
I'd like to bring this thread back up for discussion as the last post was 2 years ago. And would like to know if about any updates, mainly have there been any negative effects on the radiator?

I've found a small coolant leak at the head gasket. The head gasket has maybe 1k miles on it. I'm debating if this is the route for me, or if I should dig into it, I haven't done a head gasket on these motors before.

2.1L


who did the head gasket job?

I would continue driving as is and observing the situation, if it continues to leak (a few drops after driving) after lets say 2 weeks of driving and you are certain it's the head gasket just add the subaru stuff, it won't have any noticable impact on the cooling system, at least it did not on mine, dealerships do it as part of "maintenance"

if the leak is pretty severe I would replace the gaskets
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syncrodoka
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 3:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I vote fix the problem, not try a band-aid solution.
If the head gasket seal is failing this fast then there is a real reason to find out why before it leaves you stranded somewhere.
Good luck
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Inlet
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 2:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd like to bring this thread back up for discussion as the last post was 2 years ago. And would like to know if about any updates, mainly have there been any negative effects on the radiator?

I've found a small coolant leak at the head gasket. The head gasket has maybe 1k miles on it. I'm debating if this is the route for me, or if I should dig into it, I haven't done a head gasket on these motors before.

2.1L
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2008 5:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

<<Subaru wouldn't be recommending its use unless it provided some benefit.>>

Huh---

GM uses & recommends Bars Leak in it's aluminum engines--
That must mean it's good stuff--

Not saying or mentioning at all that maybe Subaru & Corvette's have aluminum leakation problems--and this was their resolve.

Any stop leak by whatever name is on the label is pure garbage, and at best is a short cut and big frugal move in resolving a problem.

Might cause more --plugged radiator or heater core's.

It's all crap.




<<I'm trying WaterWetter (a straight surfactant) nowadays>>

I can honestly say that after 235,000 miles on the clock of my 86 325 I , and having used the water wetter in the coolant, ( plus regular bi-annual coolant changes since new) I have one problem free coolant system.

The water wetter product hasn't dropped the operating temps a whole bunch, except in the summer with the AC on I notice that the temp gauge holds a constant operating temp--even in stop & go traffic.
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msinabottle
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2008 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you very much for the updates, Chris. I think, in the next year or so when do another flush and fill on Winston, I'll use that Prestone Super Flush on him again. I got away with it once, I think I'll probably get away with it again. I think that helped get the precipitated silicates out of him the last time.

Best!
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tencentlife
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2008 2:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since I mentioned this on another thread today, I thought I would update with a conclusion I've reached about the granular goo pictured at the beginning of this thread.

I've torn down a heap more wbx's since then, and in most of them I find residue of the silicates that standard antifreezes contain. The stuff is a grey-white granular substance, very fine in texture, exactly like the granular goo, only not colored brown. I sometimes find a small amount accumulated up at the ends of the head studs below the nuts, but usually most is found as a film around the inside of the water jackets and other coolant passages.

Also, after a lot more reading, much of it speculative and alarmist as any talk of oil or antifreeze tends to be on the motor forums, I found a post from a very knowledgeable person who gave a pretty definitive rundown on Dexcool and OAT antifreezes (on a Vespa forum, no less! : http://www.modernvespa.com/forum/topic13288.html .
This fellow's remarks are some of the only informed and non-interested comments I've read about antifreeze on any vehicle forum. Check it out).

Silicates are a normal part of the protection package in conventional non-OAT antifreeze mixtures. They protect surfaces from corrosion by precipitating onto them. But Dexcool and OAT antifreezes don't contain silicates. The previous antifreeze was orange and without being sure what I had used I figured it was Dexcool, but now I think not. So I surmise that the excess of silicates I found in that engine was the remainder from conventional antifreeze use, and the Dexcool stripped it away and put it back into circulation as particulate. So the pics show an engine run for a year with Dexcool after the same system having used conventional antifreeze for many years, and an excess of particulate silicate is the result. An acid-wash of the system when changing coolant types would have prevented this.

The Suby stuff just added the brown coloring. Since the silicate was circulating as particulate, it naturally settled out in stagnant areas like at the end of the headstuds.

I'm satisfied that as far as the engine proper is concerned, the Suby stuff poses no threat whatsoever.

I can't be sure what, if anything, the Subyoohoo does inside a radiator, but my 21-year-old one is showing signs of aging so it may be due for replacement soon. When it comes out, I guess I'll saw it in half and have a look. I suspect I'll find a lot of that freed silicate has also ended up there in occluded passages where flow was sluggish.


Mixing OAT with non-OAT antifreezes is apparently to be avoided, but used by itself the only problem Dexcool poses happens where air can accumulate in the cooling system. The claims made against Dexcool had to do with a particular engine design that had a spot in the head/block interface where an air pocket could develop, and it was in that location where the coolant reacted with the air to form a gel that then caused some trouble, by blocking that passage if I remember right. Other than that caveat it is a good product and is especially designed to work well in all-aluminum engines. I've had fine performance from it for years, and when I've removed heads from my engines they have never showed the barest trace of head corrosion. These all have AMC heads, and I'm starting to wonder if AMC didn't also use some different alloy than VW did for the OEM heads, but from what I've seen and what I've read I have no worries about using either Dexcool, or the Subyoohoo, in a wbx.
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Hmmm, provincial much?:
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dcdubs
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2008 10:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

GeorgeL wrote:
dcdubs wrote:
...the man in the service dept was nice enough to tell me it was basicly like "bars stop leak"...


There is a huge difference between "Bars Stop Leak" and the Subaru stuff. Bars is a tablet of particles that basically clog up the leak. The Subaru stuff is a liquid.


thats what the dealer told me and i pursued it no further because my car was not experiencing the leaky head gaskets...i know what stop leak is and i know that their additive is a conditioner (more liquid than stop leak).....it was more of a comparison af two products that are a waste of time.....fix the head gaskets , and run the factory recomended coolent.....
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GeorgeL
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2008 9:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dcdubs wrote:
...the man in the service dept was nice enough to tell me it was basicly like "bars stop leak"...


There is a huge difference between "Bars Stop Leak" and the Subaru stuff. Bars is a tablet of particles that basically clog up the leak. The Subaru stuff is a liquid.
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wymtns
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2008 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2008 8:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of course, the expansion tank. Not the reserve tank behind the license plate.
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Hmmm, provincial much?:
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wymtns
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2008 7:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Planning to try some of the Subaru stuff for a tiny leak. Where should I add it, expansion tank? Wondering if it will get circulated from the tank or if I should unhook a hose and add it there.
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dcdubs
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 1:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I own a 2001 2.5 rs impreza and when i got the notice in the mail that the dealer wanted to fix my headgaskets that wern't leaking i called and asked them what they planned on doing and the man in the service dept was nice enough to tell me it was basicly like "bars stop leak" they were adding i opted not to have it done and just changed my coolent on my own with the subaru red stuff (phosphate free). just turned 100k with no head issues...yet knock on wood.
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tencentlife
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Pile! Nice to see you here. Yeah, the wbx pistons come out with no visible scuffing and really minimal wear in every one of these I've torn down so far. That shows that the cylinder walls actually get good cooling, so pistons don't expand overly much as they frequently do with the very spotty cooling the jugs get in an aircooled. The rings and cylinder walls are usually in pretty good shape, too.

Too bad about spinning that rod bearing. Hope the crank is recoverable. Boston Bob and Rimco can align-bore wbx cases, in case you can't get it done locally.

I'm beginning to think what is in the pics might be two different phenomena (notice I didn't say "problems"). The goo may be a reaction from mixing of coolants, there being some small remnant of the previous coolant in the system. Remember I said the previous antifreeze was orange colored, but I can't recall if it was Dexcool or not. Where coolant stagnates, the goo is able to accumulate, whereas elsewhere flow keeps the stuff moving and mixing so it can't. The brown glaze is just the same color as the Suby stuff in the bottle, so I'm inclined to believe that's where it comes from. It manages to adhere to aluminum under certain conditions of flow and temp, and may be reacting to dissolved oxygen under those particular conditions. It also adheres to excess sealant.

Whatever. Once again, I don't have any strong opinion about it or whether it should be used or not. Just thought everyone might like to see the results of what was unintentionally a somewhat controlled experiment.
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Hmmm, provincial much?:
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piledriver
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heya tencentlife!

Just FYI I finally pulled the old Vanagon motor the rest of the way down, no pics, but it has been running std orange Dex-cool for the last 70K and 5 years of it's long life...

No pics, but there was zero corrosion on the heads, and it looked exactly as it did when I first worked on it at 207K

Have flushed/replaced the coolant 2x in those 5 years, (unintentionally with blown hoses, 50/50 mix maintained)

277+K miles, finally spun a rod bearing... the stock pistons show ZERO skirt wear. None. Check to middle of stock spec. Middle rings worn down to ~3mm wide. Still have full cross hatch so some extent. Half tempted to clean and reuse...

Sadly the case is beat at the center main. Going all T4 mains when I rebuild...
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