Toyota red coolant mixed with conventional green - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums

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post #1 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 11:19 AM Thread Starter
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3rd Generation Toyota red coolant mixed with conventional green

I got my 93 Camry 3.0 back from the Toyota dealership after they replaced the water pump, and I see it now has red coolant.

When I took it in, it had fresh conventional coolant. aka 'prestone green'

I'm fairly certain a flat rate mechanic would not take the time to flush out all the original coolant. My question is am i going to have problems with the mix?

Thank you
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post #2 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 11:20 AM
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You should be just fine....
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post #3 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 11:34 AM Thread Starter
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Another lightning fast reply. Thank you

follow-up question. It seems like it doesn't throw alot of heat.

It's about 25 degrees outside.
I checked that the heater core water valve is fully open
The temp guage needle sits below horizontal. say a little above 8 o'clock?

I can't blame the no heat on the recent cooling system work, as I just bought the dern thing 11 days ago!

Anyway I am going to bleed it out again. The radiator cap is below the cap on the housing the upper hose goes to. bleed it at the higher point, or raise the front of the car up and bleed it at the radiator cap?

Thank you
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post #4 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 11:59 AM
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My mechanic told me that using the green stuff is a no no.
he emphasized ONLY TOYOTA RED COOLANT.

my 2 cents.

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post #5 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 12:17 PM
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This is a religious question mostly.
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post #6 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 12:42 PM
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thats strange, ive always been told to never mix red and green. the cooling system has to be completely flushed in order to switch colors. something about the different chemicals when mixed together form a gell of some sort.

i could be complete wrong though.

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post #7 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 01:20 PM
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Green coolant, aka Prestone, contains silicone if I'm not mistaken. Over time, I believe it should create a film on the inside of your cooling system. At least, that's how it was explained to me. You are better off going with Toyota Red (long life) coolant. I think it's like 20-30$ a gallon at the dealer, diluting it 50/50 (with DISTILLED water of couse) should give ya 2 gallons. Some things just aren't worth the price difference in my mind.

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post #8 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 01:49 PM
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Guys, just check your owner manual:
Quote:
Make sure you have a proper freeze
protection of engine coolant.
Your coolant must contain ethylene–glycol
type coolant for a proper corrosion
protection of aluminum components.
Use
”Toyota Long Life Coolant” or equivalent.
Do not use alcohol type antifreeze or
plain water alone.
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post #9 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 02:14 PM
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Just garden-variety Prestone (not Prestone long-life)? Standard Prestone Green uses a mostly silicate-based anti-corrosion system, while Toyota Red (not the Toyota long-life) uses a phosphate-based anti-corrosion system. The two mix OK (Prestone Green also contains phosphate corrosion inhibitors, so it's not like it's incompatible, although generally you'd prefer one or the other (my main objection to mixing the two is you get a "brown" antifreeze, which looks too much like rust in the antifreeze for my tastes).

Which brings up my main question -- are you sure the dealership didn't flush out the system, because otherwise you tend to get "brown" antifreeze? Check your receipt -- it should itemize how much coolant you were charged for.
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post #10 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 02:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nervous View Post
Guys, just check your owner manual:
Quote:
Make sure you have a proper freeze
protection of engine coolant.
Your coolant must contain ethylene–glycol
type coolant for a proper corrosion
protection of aluminum components.
Use
”Toyota Long Life Coolant” or equivalent.
Do not use alcohol type antifreeze or
plain water alone.
Which doesn't really answer the question -- pretty much all modern antifreezes are ethylene-glycol based (except for some of the low-tox formulations). Both Prestone Green and Toyota Red are E-G based. And pretty much anything on the shelves these days has a anti-corrosion package that's OK for aluminum.
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post #11 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 03:25 PM
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Exactly. So, you can use any. I use PEAK from Walmart and it is mixable with any color of coolant.
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post #12 of 15 Old 02-10-2010, 05:21 PM
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I use the Prestone "mixes with anything" kind. Cause i am a cheap bastard. Never had a problem with it, my 1988 Nissan truck went almost 300,000 miles, with the original radiator, using this stuff. I changed the coolant once every year, or two. I never use any flushing solution, ever, just water. A healthy cooling system doesn't need flushing chemicals.

someone on another post said toyota coolant you can buy from the dealer is now the 50/50 kind. So less coolant. Same price, of course - but more water, less coolant.
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post #13 of 15 Old 02-16-2010, 06:33 AM Thread Starter
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3rd Generation

Thank you all for your input. Hill8570, You are correct, simply adding 2 cups of green turned the mix puke-brown.

When the weather warms up, i'll flush and refill.

Thanks again
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post #14 of 15 Old 02-17-2010, 01:03 AM
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It's a good idea not to mix coolants.

Some people think Prestone All-Makes work. But I'd avoid the 2EHA acid formula (it's a potent plasticizer).

So besides Toyota Red, Valvoline Asian Import Coolant, Peak Global, and even Toyota pink would be acceptable. Note that many of the extended life coolants are pre-mixed only. So you can't really 'flush" with distilled water, because you won't be able to get the ratio right, at least not affordably.

Some of these extended life coolants don't like air. So if your rad cap is a cheap plastic hang-loose vacuum valve type, then I'd stick with Red/distilled water instead of a 2EHA formulation. Not sure about the other non-2EHA ones however.



Quote:
Originally Posted by ghettosled View Post
thats strange, ive always been told to never mix red and green. the cooling system has to be completely flushed in order to switch colors. something about the different chemicals when mixed together form a gell of some sort.

i could be complete wrong though.
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post #15 of 15 Old 02-17-2010, 06:17 AM Thread Starter
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3rd Generation

Thank you, JohnGD. Excellent advice. I plan on a drain/refill soon, I'll just buy Toyota Red and be done with it!
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