Anyone used the zinc anodes in their system?

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Fort Lauderdale, FL
I see Flex-A-Lite and a few other companies offer a range of different zinc anodes for the cooling system, the two must popular types being an anode attached to the radiator cap, and anodes that are built into block plugs. I have the NAPA coolant filter in all vehicles, so I wouldn't have to worry about any material flying off, but I was curious if anyone had actually used these before and noticed any actual results from them? I guess the only way one would know if they were working would be if the anodes showed wear. Any thoughts? TIA.
 
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Middlesex County CT
Seems like a good idea for 40 years ago when cooling systems had brass, solder, steel, aluminum etc. Newer cars have lots of plastic and aluminum so maybe galvanic corrosion isn't that big of an issue, especially with targeted LL coolants. IDK. I've been using Toyota red and the cooling systems looks like it rolled off the assembly line, so not sure what issue (for me) it would solve.
 
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DoubleWasp

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Fort Lauderdale, FL
True. I'm using Fleet Charge in all of my vehicles (I get it for free) and haven't seen anything out of the ordinary turn up under the cap, in the expansion tanks, or in any part of the systems I have had the opportunity to see during repair or service.
 
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Apple Valley, California
Originally Posted By: simple_gifts
Seems like a good idea for 40 years ago when cooling systems had brass, solder, steel, aluminum etc. Newer cars have lots of plastic and aluminum so maybe galvanic corrosion isn't that big of an issue, especially with targeted LL coolants. IDK. I've been using Toyota red and the cooling systems looks like it rolled off the assembly line, so not sure what issue (for me) it would solve.
its a huge problem with todays cars. much bigger problem than in the past.i have tried many different things to stop galvanic corrosion and nothing works once it starts.
 
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It is? I'll echo that statement about Toyota red, my two vehicles have pristine cooling internals even after all these years and miles. Ditto for my BMW on OEM blue and my Honda on Type 2. Seriously, it couldn't be any cleaner. There's nothing - no corrosion, no sediment, no goop. Where's the problem coming from? Aluminum head, aluminum block, aluminum radiator, aluminum heater core. Where is the galvanic potential coming from? And those zinc anodes will not help. Like was already mentioned it's worse than doing nothing in accordance with that chart.
Originally Posted By: Chris142
Originally Posted By: simple_gifts
Seems like a good idea for 40 years ago when cooling systems had brass, solder, steel, aluminum etc. Newer cars have lots of plastic and aluminum so maybe galvanic corrosion isn't that big of an issue, especially with targeted LL coolants. IDK. I've been using Toyota red and the cooling systems looks like it rolled off the assembly line, so not sure what issue (for me) it would solve.
its a huge problem with todays cars. much bigger problem than in the past.i have tried many different things to stop galvanic corrosion and nothing works once it starts.
 
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NE,Ohio
he probably sees lots of neglected vehicles.. because in california they don't "need antifreeze".. and it doesn't look worn out so ... boom
 
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Upper Midwest
You may be right. All of my owner's manuals and FSM have strongly worded warnings about running a specific minimum concentration of coolant. I think the coolant bottles do as well.
Originally Posted By: Rand
he probably sees lots of neglected vehicles.. because in california they don't "need antifreeze".. and it doesn't look worn out so ... boom
 

DoubleWasp

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Fort Lauderdale, FL
Originally Posted By: Rand
he probably sees lots of neglected vehicles.. because in california they don't "need antifreeze".. and it doesn't look worn out so ... boom
Quote:
The quality of the minerals in the local water supply can also put the whammy on radiators. I use only distilled or deionized water with my antifreeze.
We have both problems down here. A certain company that installs instant coffee machines at grocery store cafes nationwide, met their match when they expanded into Florida. The minerals choked up and killed their machines left and right. We also have a lot of "professional technicians" here who will strongly advise you that you do not need either anti-freeze (I call it "coolant" lol) or a thermostat in Florida, and happily remove both from your cooling system, as if electrolysis does not happen down here. I've seen everything from metal coolant tubes with dime sized holes eaten through them, to water pump impellers eroded down to something that looks like a sad gothic pinwheel. Flushing these systems generally results in cascade failures, because the systems are in ridiculously poor shape. I flush with distilled water, use NAPA coolant filters, and run Fleet Charge. I'll be switching to the Needa filters soon, so I don't have to stay on top of the additive levels in the system.
 
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1,438
Location
NY
I would not use a zinc anode. Basically the anode is their to be eaten away instead of the other metals in the cooling system. This works good on ships or hot water tanks. The problem with it in a cooling system is that the coolant works to try and protect the zinc. This in turn uses up the coolant faster and leaves the rest of your system open to corrosion eventually. Best is to just regularly change the coolant.
 

Kestas

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The Motor City
Any anode will only protect the cathodic material for a finite distance. Don't expect a few pieces of zinc attached inside the block to protect all the water jacket surfaces.
 
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