Water Separation in Coolant?

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I was recently asked by a family member to do maintenance on a 2005 Ford Explorer. It has the original coolant in it still so I was going to drain and refill it a couple times. Out of curiosity I used my coolant tester that sucks up fluid and points the needle to a chart. I was surprised to find only clear fluid that appears to be water. Is this ever normal with old coolant to have water at the top? I can't tell if it was only a small layer or if it was all throughout the coolant tank. The car was last run a couple days ago and it only has 23,000 miles on it.
 
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The Ford Gold/Zerex G-05 stuff is pretty clear, actually. I ran into the same problem a few years ago when looking at the coolant in a 2007 Mercury Milan. I was used to red/green/orange coolants and had to do a triple-take on this stuff. It's just a clear pale yellow. What did the coolant tester say?
 
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To answer your question; NO, coolant and water mix! There should be no water separation from the coolant. Yes, todays coolants are more clear, not cloudy! But what the RoGuE is saying is that, what was pulled up into the coolant tester was clear and colorless, correct? Which shows a separation in the mix. My suggestion is to flush if possible, or at least, Drain & Refill both the cooling system and the coolant reservoir. smile CB
 
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The coolant/water mix you sampled is relatively clear. More importantly, what did the tester read? I'm betting colder than 32*?
 

RoGuE

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Yeah, it was clear and colorless. The tester I used looks like this: The needle pointed all the way to the top... Would two drain and fills be enough? What is a decent fluid for this? It's the V6 SOHC if that makes a difference.
 
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Yeah, I have the same tester. They only read the strength of the coolant not it's acidity or alkalinity...Did I say that right? smirk 2 D&F's would be enough though, 1 should be sufficient! I guess you should use what Ford recommends. G-05?
 
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Originally Posted By: RoGuE
What is a decent fluid for this? It's the V6 SOHC if that makes a difference.
Prestone Dex-Cool mixed 50/50 with distilled water.
 

RoGuE

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Originally Posted By: Char Baby
Yeah, I have the same tester. They only read the strength of the coolant not it's acidity or alkalinity...Did I say that right? smirk 2 D&F's would be enough though, 1 should be sufficient! I guess you should use what Ford recommends. G-05?
The manual says "Motorcraft Premium Gold" coolant...a quick search shows that to be G-05. Can anyone confirm? I can pick up some Zerex G-05.
Originally Posted By: Merkava_4
Originally Posted By: RoGuE
What is a decent fluid for this? It's the V6 SOHC if that makes a difference.
Prestone Dex-Cool mixed 50/50 with distilled water.
I thought mixing Dex-Cool with another coolant was a no-no.
 
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Yes, your search was correct. While Dex Cool is a fine product and would work in your system IF you flushed it completely, the G-05 works very well too. Personally, I'd stick with the OEM product.
 

01rangerxl

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Yes, G-05 is what you need. John Deere CoolgardII can also be used without flushing. I would not mix in anything else. Who has been doing oil changes on this Explorer? One possibility for the diluted coolant is that a quick lube has been topping off with water. These Explorers often leak from the thermostat housing/water outlet at the front of the engine. It can be a slow leak and go unnoticed for some time, especially on a vehicle that isn't driven much.
 
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Originally Posted By: RoGuE
[quote=Char Baby]Yeah, I have the same tester. They only read the strength of the coolant not it's acidity or alkalinity...Did I say that right? smirk 2 D&F's would be enough though, 1 should be sufficient! I guess you should use what Ford recommends. G-05?
The manual says "Motorcraft Premium Gold" coolant...a quick search shows that to be G-05. Can anyone confirm? I can pick up some Zerex G-05. That's the stuff. If its convenient, Mopar Red (I forget the part number) is exactly the same G-05 coolant except dyed red instead of clear. I actually use Zerex G-05 but put a few drops of red color in it so I can see it in the overflow tank.
 
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