Coolant Temperature Reducers

texasbeasttexasbeast Member Posts: 5
edited March 2014 in Ford
Anyone have experience with these chemical additives for your radiator claiming to drop your coolant temp better than standard E.G./H2O mix? I saw a product called "40 Below", which claims to drop coolant temps another 40°F, and my 180000 mi 1980 Crown Vic is beggin' for something more to keep her cool. New water pump, hoses, and regular flushes, but the wore-out engine still runs hot. Strong engine and crisp tranny.

Still runs, though, so I guess I should be happy.


  • swschradswschrad Member Posts: 2,171
    there is no way you are going to increase the overall efficiency of the entire system with a little tube of OfulSlop (tm). pure chutzpah by the pound.

    I would suspect that Vic has a fluid clutch in the fan drive, most of the large engines do. take a little morning test some day before firing the beast up. put ALL sets of keys in your pocket, pop the hood, and turn the fan by hand. if it spins freely, you need a new fluid clutch. if it doesn't spin by hand but will turn when the engine is started, you probably should replace the clutch. if there is a gob of oily goo behind the fluid clutch, replace it.

    but if on a cool morning you can turn the fan and it feels to have some sort of smooth steady resistance, the fan clutch is probably OK.

    have you taken a hose to the back of the radiator and flushed all the bugs, cottonwood seeds, and nonsense out the front? is there a bug screen in front of the radiator that is substantially plugged up? -- if so, get a toothbrush and brush the slop off.

    but putting what is almost certainly mineral salts into the radiator is only going to increase corrosion. save your money both now and later, don't fall for that "mechanic in a can" nonsense. the only time the mechanic's in the can is when he/she takes a "health break."
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastMember Posts: 1,712
    How some folks must think I never agree that any product works, but man......
    There are no quick fix chemicals.
    Plain and simple. You know that saying, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."?
    Fix the problem, then there are some things that can help. Most of them are mechanical, not chemical.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Those chemicals work to a point, I've used them and certainly you see it used a lot in vintage's NOT going to cure a bad problem. If your radiator or cooling fan or thermostat or whatever is malfunctioning, all you'll do is take a little longer to heat up your coolant. I think it's best application might be for cooling systems already in good order but which perhaps are under-engineered for short bursts of extreme use.

    I think the claim of a 40 degree drop in coolant is reckless advertising.
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
    but I've used Redline's Water Wetter (in an independent test when I was with Super Shops) and noted a 10-15 degree drop.

    I'm sure there's some alcohol to its base substance...and it seemed to work OK. For $6, not a bad deal.

    It's never claimed to be a miracle cure and I know many racers who use the stuff in drag racing since you can't use any type of coolant at the race tracks.
  • texasbeasttexasbeast Member Posts: 5
    Fan is nice and tight. Turns by hand with tension, and when you stop turning your hand, the fan stops too.

    I'll hose the rear of the radiator like you said, swschrad. I've brushed the front clear regularly, but I never knocked the impacted stuff forward like you say. Harder to reach back there, so "outta sight, outta mind". Probably all kinds of nice things wedged up in there!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Yep, Redline Water Wetter is a good product. I used it in my Alfa because I was heating up a bit climbing mountain passes in summer and it seemed to keep things under control. But I never had an overheating problem that I was trying to cure, only used Water Wetter for a little more slack.
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
    just figured if I lowered the temps at the manifold and heads, that 5-10 degrees might add .02 hp - who knows....anything for more power!
  • armtdmarmtdm Member Posts: 2,057
    Is not to mix these products (Water Wetter or the others) with coolant. They are most effective in plain water which is not practical for the every day driver. I have used both and, saw no difference but I did not actually measure the temp. Saw no diff in the temperature gauge.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    I don't think the objective of these additives is to lower the temperature of normal running cars at normal temperatures. They seem to work best under stress and higher temperatures (to a point).

    Actually, I don't know how they work exactly, come to think of it.
  • q45manq45man Member Posts: 416
    Rline WW works by decreasing the surface tension on steam bubbles that form in hot spots in heads.
    The steam acts like an insulator so the coolant cannot absorb the heat from the spot. Bubble burster. Nucleate boiling is the term.

    Actually WW may increase the coolant temp ecu sensor reading because it reads coolant outflow from the head [absorb more heat, the coolant temp goes up] but the radiator becomes more efficient due to higher differential temp [hotter input], thus the rad OUTPUT may be slightly lower than without WW........need to read input and output [back to engine to learn exactly how much]

    WW Works primarily by lowering the overall head temperatures which results in less detonation.
    Aluminum heads conduct heat to coolant faster than iron [why they can run higher static compression ratio].

    After all the head temperature [combustion chamber temperature] is what's important not the coolant temperature READING.......assuming you have enough pressure to keep from boiling in rad.

    The less % AF you can use [and still have some corrosion protection] the more heat the coolant [water] can absorb from head and transport to rad, thus the higher efficiency the rad can operate at.

    Following for HOST:
    Depending on head design, composition, ambient and power output don't expect RR WW to always lower the coolant temperature the ecu temp sensor sees.............sometimes you need to trick the sensor/ecu 3,4,5,6,7F [trim the sensor resistance curve to avail yourself of the full benefits].......some [all] ecu go into summer protective mode [progressive advance reduction] when coolant exceeds 195F[Nissan]-200-205F [Ford 210F]reading. ALFA [?].
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    thanks that was very interesting!
  • 719b719b Member Posts: 216
    this is a question i'm asking for a neighbor, so i only know the basics about the car he's concerned about.
    87 nissan 200sx 6cyl
    perfect condition
    radiator flushed 2 weeks ago.
    we live in a hot climate
    the car has been running hot for the past year and a radiator flush didn't cure the problem. his questions are... will removing the thermostat keep his engine running cooler? will removing the thermostat do any damage to his engine?
  • q45manq45man Member Posts: 416
    Nissan thermostats start to open at 170F and are fully open by modulate the temperature to the ideal 176-180F.

    Without a thermostat the coolant will not warm up enough in cool weather to tell the ecu to get out of warm up enrichment mode [higher fuel consumption].

    A 10 year old radiator may just need replacing as chemical cleaning can't correct the external corrosion or dirt......blocking air thermostat at the same time.

    When ever you use a chemical flush you should change the thermostat afterwards as the rubber/neoprene seal can be damaged by the chemicals.
  • 719b719b Member Posts: 216
    good advice and thanks for the info
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
  • 719b719b Member Posts: 216
    i think that was done when he had the cooling system flush
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