What Type of Coolant to Use for Your Car?

What Type of Coolant to Use for Your Car?

Maintaining the right level of fluids is an important aspect in the maintenance of your car. Many car owners only care about the engine oil and often overlook the coolant during car maintenance. Coolant is an important fluid in your vehicle that keeps the engine cool and also protects engine components from corrosion attacks. You need to use the right type of coolant in your car. But, many car owners don’t know the right type of coolant to use in their car. Here, we have provided some information that will help you choose the right type of coolant to use in your vehicle.

What are the Different Coolant Types Available?

The three main coolant types are OAT, IAT and HOAT. Let’s look at the chemical composition of the coolants in detail.

  • IAT is the technical name which stands for Inorganic Acid Technology. The coolant mainly consists of a chemical composition that includes traditional green antifreeze which is low silicate-based. IAT coolants need dilution with water and they are commonly used for car and light-duty trucks. After dilution with water, you also need to add supplemental coolant additives in the radiator to pre-charge the coolant.

  • OAT is also a technical name which stands for Organic Acid Technology. The coolant composition does not contain nitrite. OAT coolants are known as extended life coolants due to their long service life that is around 600,000 miles or 12,000 engine hours.

  • HOAT stands for Hybrid Organic Acid Technology. The coolant is a combination of OAT and IAT coolant types. In simple words, the chemical composition of HOAT coolant is low silicate based while it also contains nitrite technology.

Is it Right to Mix Coolant Types?

No, you should never mix coolant types. As mentioned earlier, coolants have different inhibitor packages that don’t work well together. If you mix two incompatible types of coolants, the result is that the coolant performance is affected leading to overheating of the engine and corrosion of engine components. Hence, you should never mix two different types of coolants.

Why the Color of the Coolant is Not Important

Never judge a coolant by its color. The color of the coolant has no relation to the coolant type nor does it give an idea about the chemical composition.

How to Determine the Right Type of Coolant to Use for Your Car

If the technical information confuses you, read the car owner’s manual to know the right type of coolant for your car. The manufacturer gives information about recommended fluids in the car’s owner manual and you will find the right coolant type mentioned in there. If you don’t have the car owner’s manual, you can approach the car dealership to know the right coolant type to use in your car.

Car manufacturers supply engine coolants for different models they manufacture and you can purchase the right coolant type at your car dealership. You can also buy aftermarket coolants. The majority of aftermarket coolants have the name of car manufacturers mentioned on the packaging. This can be useful to pick the right coolant for your car.