First, lets make sure we address what coolant is and what its purpose is. Coolant is a liquid or gas that is used to remove heat from something. The engine’s cooling system is filled with coolant/antifreeze which have a lover freeze point and higher boiling point than water. It is forced through the engine by a water pump and absorbs the heat generated by the combustion process, then returns to the radiator. Air passes over the radiator, and heat is transferred from the coolant to the air, lowering the temperature of the coolant so that the cycle can start again.
It is important that these tests are performed when the engine is cool.
The visual test is the easiest way to check the condition of your coolant. First you open up the radiator and check the back of the cap. You want your radiator cap to be clean. If there is sludge on the back of the cap it is an indicator that the coolant is bad. When looking inside of the radiator, if there is gunk and buildup this is another indicator that the coolant is bad.
Check out the video below to learn more about the tests discussed above.
We recommend you change your coolant every 24 months or 30,000 miles. Learn more about the services we provide here at V&F and the recommend maintenance schedule to follow.