What Is Antifreeze Used For?

You’ve heard the word antifreeze used in the context of automotive maintenance, but do you really know what it’s used for? Perhaps not, but that’s okay. You’ve come to the right place to learn everything you’ll ever need to know about it! In fact, this quick primer will teach you about the different types of antifreeze, so that you can learn how to check your own vehicle’s antifreeze levels in a snap.

Being able to handle your own vehicle maintenance at home always feels empowering. But if there simply aren’t enough hours in your day to check your antifreeze and other essential vehicle fluids, then perhaps it is time to schedule an appointment with Living the Dream Auto Care. Our skilled in-house mechanics can check your vehicle’s fluid levels quickly so that you can get back on the road without delay.

What Is Antifreeze? How Does it Work?


Also known as “engine coolant” or simply “coolant,” antifreeze is a specialized liquid compound which helps to regulate your engine’s temperature during extreme conditions. For example, during a chilly winter storm, coolant is pumped through your engine to ensure that it doesn’t freeze up. Coolant is likely to pump through your engine during the peak of summer as well to prevent the heart of your vehicle from overheating.


At a chemical level, most common antifreezes are made up of ethylene glycol. This is then mixed with water in a 50/50 solution before being poured into your vehicle’s coolant tank (located under the front hood). From there, your vehicle can automatically use its antifreeze reserve as necessary by infusing key vehicle liquids with the solution to prevent freezing or overheating.


Are There Different Types of Engine Coolant?


You may have noticed that antifreeze comes in several different vibrant colors. These aren’t just for show, though; in fact, an antifreeze’s color may be a clear indicator of its formulation. 


Different types have different levels of tested efficiency, so it is important to get the type recommended by your vehicle’s manufacturer. This chart will help you understand which type of antifreeze works best with your brand of vehicle.


How Do I Check my Antifreeze Levels?


Checking your own antifreeze levels can be quick and easy. First, notice that your antifreeze well is semi-transparent. As such, you can clearly see if the liquid levels inside have fallen below the marked “Full” indicator line. If your antifreeze level is too low, than you can simply add more of the same type of antifreeze to the well.


That being said, never mix two different types of antifreeze. Similarly, always check to see if your chosen antifreeze is premixed with water. If it is not, be sure to follow the bottle’s instructions for safely combining it with water before adding it to your vehicle’s antifreeze tank.


Learn More about the Antifreeze that’s Right for Your Vehicle


Most drivers make a point to refill their antifreeze while they are topping off their other critical vehicle liquids. This can be done by scheduling a routine vehicle maintenance check with us here at Living the Dream Auto Care. 


With just a quick call to (339) 237-5151, we can answer any of your remaining questions about antifreeze and schedule you for an appointment to meet with us, your trusted, local auto care team.

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