General info on types of coolants???

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6,388
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Washington St.
I'm in a discussion about coolants on a motorcycle forum. Can anyone recommend a link to a concise discussion of the different types of antifreezes and which engine makers prefer which types? For Suzuki motorcycles, I'm making the assumption that any Japanese engine coolant is better than stuff bought blindly if it says "universal" or "suitable for aluminum." Fortunately, these engines seem to be tolerant of just about any coolant. Since 2001, I haven't heard of a cooling system corrosion problem in the V-Strom line.
 
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1,154
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Richmond, VA
What you're buying is corrosion protection. If a coolant is nonreactive with most metals it'll probably get labeled universal. I just use the Amsoil stuff since the test results on it were pretty impressive:
Quote:
Standards for iron, steel, copper and brass allow a maximum loss of less than 20 mg. AMSOIL Antifreeze & Engine Coolant never exceeded a 3 mg loss in any of those metals in a testing period that was run for 10 weeks, three weeks longer than required tests.
 
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8,576
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Ohio
I'd agree that Japanese automotive coolant is a better solution than "universal" (usually dexcool or dexclone but also Peak Global). The Japanese motorcycle coolant is most likely the same formula as Japanese automotive coolant. However, there are two types the first type and the extended life type, both contain phosphates but not silicates or borates. The 2nd type can normally be backed speced but there's some question if it protects copper soldered radiators as well. Honda cycle seem to use type II and others seem to use the first type The universals will work well in terms of corrosion protection so the lack of phosphates doesn't really matter, but with dexclone and universals you are not assured of gasket durabilty (which I don't think would really be a problem on a motorcycle), copper and solder radiator protection, and the real potential problem without a pressurized reservoir dexclone gumming over time if the coolant level is low and has air in it. There is another option besides using Japanese automotive coolant, Zerex AVF. That's what I used in a Kawasaki. Type I Japanese auto concentrate probably would be just as economical since Zerex AVF is premix. AVF is I think closer to type I although it is marketed mare as being a replacement for type II extended life. It might protect soldered radiators better than type II. Here's an article that touches on automotive coolant types: http://www.motor.com/article.asp?article_ID=1655
 
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