Home Service Oil Company
Home Service Oil Company

How to Choose the Right Antifreeze for Your Vehicle

December 3, 2020

Since the weather outside is quickly dropping, now is the time to get prepared. Think of all the not-so-fun possibilities that occur revolving around your vehicle during winter - scraping ice, using jumper cables, and figuring out why the engine isn’t running. Let’s take a closer look at that last one for now, as you very well might just need to add a little antifreeze.

What is Antifreeze?

Don’t be confused by the name, antifreeze IS NOT a product that you add to your windshield to prevent ice from building up. It IS a type of coolant that, when mixed with distilled water, can be added to your vehicle so that the engine remains at a consistent temperature.

How it Works

Here’s a quick chemistry lesson – antifreeze is mostly composed of ethylene glycol, a synthetic liquid substance that absorbs water. Glycols are alcohols that are able to decrease a liquid’s freezing point and increase its boiling point. With antifreeze constantly flowing through your engine, it won’t freeze or overheat easily. Propylene glycol is another type of glycol, but it is less toxic and is actually found in personal care products. Go figure!

Selecting an Antifreeze

A few varying additives make up the rest of antifreeze and most brands will have their own distinct color based on their formulas. Speaking of brands, there are a lot to choose from! How can you be sure that you are purchasing the right one? It all depends on your engine. Start by checking your vehicle’s manual for the manufacturer’s recommendation. While most antifreezes will get the job done, it’s possible that one marked “DEX COOL®” may perform better in your particular vehicle.

When to Change It

It’s best to check your owner’s manual on how often you should change the antifreeze. We recommend checking your levels once before winter and again before summer. You should consider completely draining and refilling it after 5 years of owning the vehicle. It’s also a good idea to get your vehicle inspected every 30,000, 60,000, and 90,000 miles just in case something is broken or leaking without your knowledge. You might even need to simply top off your antifreeze if your vehicle is running low.

Be Careful Not to Spill

Known for being odorless and having a sweet taste, antifreeze is a toxic substance that should be handled with care. Even a small amount could be deadly for a curious animal or pet. If you do spill some, make sure to clean it up right away. There are a few non-toxic versions of antifreeze available if this is a major concern to you.

HSO Provides Lubricants

HSO carries all types of lubricants – whether you need hydraulic fluid or synthetic oil, we have it. When it comes to coolants, we carry multiple types of antifreeze for both on- and off-road applications. Call us today for more information at 1-800-467-5044.