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Old 08-26-2013, 05:10 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Distilled water + antifreeze

How critical is it to use distilled water in coolant? Is there much difference in using tap water? I think rainwater is also fine, but this year all my rain barrels are too dirty and the water is growing algae...
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Why chance it to save a buck? Go buy a jug of water....
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:59 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You do not want any minerals mixed into the coolant, its not worth the risk to use your water as it may be not bad or it might be quite bad and cause yourself all sorts of grief. So that means no bottled water ether as that has minerals, just 100% pure distilled water with no trace of anything in it is the good practice for mixing up coolant. Even so called rain water can have contaminants in it from the air as it falls and scum forming on the surface or growth within the container confirms that theory.

Thats why they even offer 50/50 premixed coolant now but they charge a pretty penny for that water compared to buying distilled or to own your own distiller.
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Hello Rook
I save the water from my dehumidifier to mix with straight coolant. I find myself buying more of the premix now a days.
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:33 AM   #5 (permalink)
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thanks for the replies - I have always used distilled water but was wondering how critical it was, especially since the distiller broke down. Found a good place to buy some though which takes away the inconvenience.
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Old 08-27-2013, 02:34 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Our well water is borderline "brackish water". As a result, both houses on our well (Dad & Mom, Wife & I) have water distillers for all drinking, cooking, etc. The holding tanks on the 2 systems total around 30 gallons, so we generally use the distilled water.

Also, the local shops are carrying more and more pre-mix coolant. Both gallon jugs and bulk drums, so it's sometimes more convenient to go that route.

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Old 08-27-2013, 08:56 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Why distilled water? When I took my HD Mechanics it was only recommended that you use soft water instead of hard water to avoid cavitation and erosion of liners I don't understand the need for distilled??
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:06 PM   #8 (permalink)
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We've never used distilled AFAIK and have never had issues. Would be interesting to take 2 identical machines and see if there is a difference but we just use quality water (county water). We use it inside the stainless in the milk barns so it should be plenty good for antifreeze. Starting to see more and more pre-mix anyways.
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:30 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cnh007 View Post
Why distilled water? When I took my HD Mechanics it was only recommended that you use soft water instead of hard water to avoid cavitation and erosion of liners I don't understand the need for distilled??
Well, "here" both the water and the soil have pH levels of 7.5-8.5. In other words, the water is a wee bit on the hard side! Also both soil tests and water tests will come back off the charts for Mb, Ca, etc. You almost need a fork to drink the water here.

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Old 08-27-2013, 10:04 PM   #10 (permalink)
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My oldest piece of Equipment is a 1958 WD9, and my newest is a 1986 IH 4000 swather. i use well water, we have a high alkali area never a problem ever. The premix stuff is 50% water and is the same price as full concentrate. I tore down a lot of engines in my day and i have never seen any way of knowing what water was used on an engine. i see wear and lack of maintenance first. also antifreeze treats the water for corrosion and lubricates seals. Water is used to increase thermal conductivity only, if you are in a cool area you can get away with pure antifreeze, and pure antifreeze does not gel in the winter, look at all the antifreeze containers for sale in between the pumps at a gas stations when it is winter, not one is gelled, i don't know how that rumor got started. Not enough antifreeze and clean water well do a more damage in corrosion then using non distilled water and 50% antifreeze.
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