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Thread: MK3 2012 Focus - Oil Change 101 Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
05-01-2016 04:08 PM
sailor That'll work for your occasional use.

Best for a simple good/bad check of the system.

The float type is popular for it's familiarity (been around forever) and unlimited reuse. Easy to see what it's doing and you can recheck repeatedly. Better to have on hand for shops/enthusiasts who use one more as you can make changes/recheck without using up multiple strips.
05-01-2016 03:02 PM
okaythen cool thanks, I will just get that amazon test strip
05-01-2016 02:28 PM
sailor okaythen - "strength" refers to concentration, and either the float gauges or the new test strips of that type can check it.

That particular strip type also has a PH test included to warn of poor coolant condition.

More testing goes on now simply because of it's availability. When all coolant was of the two year variety test strips didn't exist & the main concern was checking freeze point before Winter.

With long life coolant now being typical (5 yr. change) there's demand for testing to make sure it's OK beyond the basic "strength" test for boil over protection/freeze point.

From my experience some of this testing is trickle down from large trucks that have more concerns with coolant condition (running more miles/years) as they can actually have corrosion/cavittation from pinpoint boiling that over time can actually hole an iron cylinder in contact with the coolant. Hole a cylinder and at the least you're down for a preventable major rebuild (cylinders are replaceable inserts in those diesels).
05-01-2016 01:52 PM
block At MOST, I changed the coolant once in my 99 Contour, which I owned for 15 years (bought it new). 140k miles. Radiator never leaked and I replaced the hoses at most 1x.
So don't worry about it.
05-01-2016 12:57 PM
okaythen
Quote:
Originally Posted by sailor View Post
The testers have different purposes.

The one you're looking at is for coolant concentration, the test strips are for coolant condition (anti-corrosive additive levels).

Going too long by time only isn't that bad, but it's good to do it at least annually (don't tell anyone you let it go too long). Short trips & sitting can leave more moisture/contaminants in the oil that longer drives help evaporate, your trips sound good for the car.


Edit - looking into it more, there are multiple types of test strips avail.. Not just the additive type I'm used to but also ones that can show mixture concentration, PH for bad water added etc., and ones for other contaminants that can result from old coolant.
what's the difference between coolant condition and coolant concentration, manual says check coolant strength which one is that? I guess both should be checked at every oil change?

this is for coolant condition right? http://www.amazon.com/Cool-Trak-3115...ifreeze+tester

so glad I talked to you, I feel better about my car.
04-30-2016 06:39 PM
sailor The testers have different purposes.

The one you're looking at is for coolant concentration, the test strips are for coolant condition (anti-corrosive additive levels).

Going too long by time only isn't that bad, but it's good to do it at least annually (don't tell anyone you let it go too long). Short trips & sitting can leave more moisture/contaminants in the oil that longer drives help evaporate, your trips sound good for the car.


Edit - looking into it more, there are multiple types of test strips avail.. Not just the additive type I'm used to but also ones that can show mixture concentration, PH for bad water added etc., and ones for other contaminants that can result from old coolant.
04-30-2016 05:01 PM
okaythen
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonMaiden View Post
You can get those testers for a couple bux at a local parts store.
found this I think I will get it Amazon.com: Prestone AF-1420 Antifreeze / Coolant Tester: Automotive

There is also the ph strip tester thing, which one is better all the same?

I actually changed the oil after 1.5 years 6k miles, before I read somwhere that max 2 years if you never get miles that high, but max 1 year seems to be the norm so did I damage anything? maybe engine just aged more or something? it's around 70% highway 30% local I always warm up the car etc. I used mobil 1 full synthetic 5w30.
04-30-2016 01:49 AM
RonMaiden You can get those testers for a couple bux at a local parts store.
04-29-2016 07:36 AM
okaythen
Quote:
Originally Posted by sailor View Post
Coolant testers have been around forever, range from a pocket size with floating balls to larger ones with floating discs or floating lever/gauge.

Quite similar to battery hydrometers.

If the system hasn't had water/coolant added at any time it should be fine for freeze point/boil over protection.
I added some distill water when the coolant level was low, I guess I will get the coolant tester then! found one on amazon....convenient that those things exist, I got a lot to learn.

thanks so much for the replies
04-28-2016 01:56 PM
sailor Coolant testers have been around forever, range from a pocket size with floating balls to larger ones with floating discs or floating lever/gauge.

Quite similar to battery hydrometers.

If the system hasn't had water/coolant added at any time it should be fine for freeze point/boil over protection.
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