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Old 06-30-2010, 12:21 PM   #1
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Coolant Question

Hi Guys:

On my last trip I was Traveling up some very steep hills with my Cat 350 Turbo diesel C7 and my ..See Info Center light flashed on, and it said low coolant level. It promptly went out and never came back on again the whole trip.

But if I want to add coolant or aka antifreeze to my DP is there a special brand I need to look for. I presume I can pop the radiator coolant cap when COLD and add the coolant myself? Yes/No..?

I know it is in the rear at the back end right above my oil and tranny dip sticks.

Any words to the wise I would appreciate it.

Regards... Jim P.
Meridian 2004 36G DP
2010 Jeep Sahara Unlimited
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:00 PM   #2
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I'm told and use the absolute best is a complete coolant: Is it OK to copt/paste the below from another forum?

Fleetguard ES Complete is not an OAT coolant. It is understandable how you could have come to that conclusion by reading the literature. Fleetguard has an OAT but it is not the ES Complete. It is the ES Optimax. The marketing dept is responsible for the confusing wording. ES complete is a good quality coolant that is precharged with DCA-4. I thing it is precharged with 2.5 units. An OAT coolant normally contains about 10% organic additives. The ES Complete contains less than 1%. Two acids make up that .8% and I think at least one of them comes from the DCA-4.

I think your choice of coolant and your reasoning is good. If you flush your system, install a non charged coolant filter, and a 50/50 mix of Fleetguard ES Complete you have formed the foundation for a well maintained system. I would use the EG version. No particular reason other than that is what I am most familiar with. Next I would monitor the coolant with Fleetguard 2602 and 2607 test strips. When the SCA level started approaching the 1.2 level I would replace my filter with a new 4 unit Fleetguard filter. **I would not change the coolant until the 2607 strips indicated it was time. If you don't have some type of mechanical failure and contaminate your coolant you may be surprised how long that is. You can use this same practice with any low silicate coolant and DCA-4.

**Trucks are used in so many different ways that it is hard to have a standard method that best fits every application. As far as my personal truck, My coolant usually gets changed because my hoses are being changed. I like to replace hoses about every 4 years. This usually ends up being about 50-60,000 miles. The coolant I remove is fine I just want new. If I were driving 50,000 miles per year I would probably still change the coolant when I changed hoses except that would be about every two years. One has to evaluate his particular situation and make decisions based that. One of my favorite sayings "There Are No Rules, You Have To Think".
On my bottle, it says something like: "This coolant is compatable with ALL systems"
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:30 PM   #3
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If the coolant level is just a bit low - like a quart low, I would add a quart of distilled water. That amount of water will not dilute the coolant and distilled water will mix with any type of coolant.
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Old 07-01-2010, 09:44 AM   #4
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Fleetguard ES Complete is not an OAT coolant.
It is true that ALL Compleat ES is not OAT, but there is now a Compleat ES OAT coolant. You can see it on the Fleetguard website at
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Old 07-01-2010, 07:23 PM   #5
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sensor location

We have a 2004 Journey ... sometimes when I am climbing and turn left the low coolant light comes on momentarily ... it goes off when I straighten out ...

I have learned to ignore the warning when it just comes on for a few seconds ...

About a month ago, the surge tank developed a leak and after quite a bit of coolant had escaped the warning came on and STAYED ON ... then I stopped and added some coolant so that I could make it to a repair facility.

And yes you can add the coolant yourself ... remove the cap on the surge tank ... and hold the jug horizontal ... then you can pour the coolant in.

Make sure you notice the position of the cap before you remove it ... you will need to replace it exactly.
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Old 07-01-2010, 08:21 PM   #6
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Hi Skigramp:

What brand coolant did you use?

Regards..Jim P.
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2010 Jeep Sahara Unlimited
Two HD's for company
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Old 07-01-2010, 08:48 PM   #7
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It's important to know if you have the extended life coolant of the standard coolant. You can buy premixed 50/50 coolant if you have to add. If you haven't had your coolant analyzed it would be a good idea to send a sample to Blackstone Labs. You can also use the test strips be careful, they have a shelf life and expire. Get some pH test strips and test the pH, if its above 11.5 or below 8.0 change the coolant. Low pH can be a symptom of a leaking head gasket.
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Old 07-01-2010, 08:55 PM   #8
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You should call the chassis mfg. and give them your chassis VIN and they will be able to tell you what kind and brand of coolant was originally put in. You should use this.

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Old 07-02-2010, 10:15 AM   #9
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You mentioned you were pulling a grade when it flashes momentarily. It doesn't take much of an angle to drop below the alarm point. I carry a gallon of Fleet Charge 50/50 prediluted antifreeze/coolant just for such occassions. It is fully formulated SCA precharged with low silicate and phosphate free. It also contains nitrite for wet sleeve linear cavitation protection. Got it at the factory service center. It has a boiling point of 265 and a freeze point of -34 degrees Fahrenheit.
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Old 07-02-2010, 01:21 PM   #10
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Your Meridian Freightliner Chassis came from the factory with Alliance Brand coolant precharged with SCA's. You cannot mix OAT or ELC coolant with yours. If you can't find Alliance coolant, it is the same as Detroit Diesel Power Cool or Fleetcharge FC0A53. You can get the Fleetcharge at some NAPA, Pep Boys or TSC stores.
If your coach has the original coolant it is past due for a coolant change. To do away with the testing of SCA's every 6 months as required (you have been doing this, haven't you?) I would change to CAT ELC. This will require your cooling system to be drained and flushed before adding the new coolant. ELC does not require routine testing. Just an extender added at three years. Then it's good for another three years.
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Old 07-03-2010, 08:56 AM   #11
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Hi JoeT:

Thats excactly what I was looking for. Thank you very much.

Jim P.
Meridian 2004 36G DP
2010 Jeep Sahara Unlimited
Two HD's for company
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