1983-12-05

A One Thousand Car Assessment of the U.S. Car Population Cooling Systems 831821

For the first time a statistically valid survey and sampling of the engine coolant has been taken of the United States passenger car population covering model years 1980 through 1968 and older. The purpose of the survey was to assess the coolant inhibitor condition, glycol concentration, coolant level, and performance history in passenger cars as they prevail in all parts of the United States.A circulated warm coolant sample was taken from 1004 engine cooling systems. The samples were evaluated for rust and/or sediment, and analyzed for pH, reserve alkalinity, percent glycol, and iron concentration. The car operator was interviewed for a history of coolant maintenance and engine cooling performance problems.The information from this unique survey clearly indicates the current quality of engine coolant condition and how it relates to the major geographic segments of the country.Cars requiring service are shown, based on coolant condition parameters such as rust, sediment, glycol concentrations, loss of reserve alkalinity, and low coolant level.Despite the essential role of the coolant as a full time functional fluid, essential for corrosion protection and critical heat transfer, the survey data shows a high percentage of coolant neglect and apparent ignoring of service recommendations of car manufacturers, antifreeze marketers, and other automotive authorities.

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