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What antifreeze to use: Red, blue or green? What does the radiator drain look like?

Fluids and Lubricants Motor oil, transmission oil, radiator fluid, power steering fluid, blinker fluid... wait, there is no blinker fluid. Technical discussion and analysis of the different lubricants we use in our cars.

What antifreeze to use: Red, blue or green? What does the radiator drain look like?

Old 01-23-2004, 11:58 AM
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$18.95????? Good grief.
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Old 01-23-2004, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by bill99gxe
$18.95????? Good grief.
Yup. That's right. My dealer rounded it off to an even $19. Thief!

I'm glad to hear about $12 Toyota red. May try it next.
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Old 01-24-2004, 09:39 AM
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Yeah, if Nissan coolant is nearing $20/gallon people here would be insane to give them that business.
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Old 01-24-2004, 10:37 AM
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Ok

Just because this is now a sticky I am going to record time and materials so that people can gauge what they need.

1) 2 Gallons of Toyota Red OEM. 11.95 X 2 = 23.90
2) 5 Gallon Catch pan with drain = 5.99
3) AntiFreeze Tester 2.99 (Prestone) = 2.99
4) New funnel = .99
5) Easy pour spiggot = .99 (worth like a billion dollars..NO SPILL!!!) I used this on my 5 gallon drain to pour back into the gallon jugs my used AF/water.
6) 8 gallons of DISTILLED water @ .73 a gallon = 5.84

Total: 40.70 (youll have to add your local tax of course)

So far I have about 1.5 hours in it. I have
1) drained original til it does not drip
1a) while draining rad, I cleaned reserve tank with DISTILLED water only. No soap. Just heavy shaking and rinsing...used 1 gallon to complete this thoroughly.
2) ran some distilled water through with drain still open.
3) fill slowly...stopping periodically to squeeze lower rad host to burp it.
4) capped off and ran car with heat on.
5) cooled for 5 minuts
6) drained radiator until it does not drip.
7) repeated steps 3-6.


I will come back and update this when I am finished for total time.

UPDATE: I eventually ended up flushing 10 total gallons through the system to get it clear. (**** retentive) Probably could have gotten away with 8.

I spent 3 hours doin this. Most of the time was spent waiting for the rad to drain so I could refill it, drive a bit and then drain it. Over all...VERY easy. Just time consuming as I had NO mess to clean up afterwards
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Old 01-24-2004, 01:37 PM
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I've been running Dex Cool (the orange colored one) for about 3 years now. Of course I did a complete flush before I switched over.

Didn't know that there are new coolants out. I'll have to take a look at them.


Originally Posted by edwardh1
What goes into a 99 Maxima?
greeen ( old kind) antifreeze or red (new kind) antifreeze?

owner's manual says use only Nissan or equal - no spec given!!!!!
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Old 01-25-2004, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by edwardh1
It does not show a washer that I saw, did I miss it?
hey Ed...I did my flush and fill this weekend and the "o-ring" is incorporated into the drain neck. Its not on the plug itself. When you screw it back in, you can hear the "squinching" noise. I also took a flashlight and poked my head up there....Its in the neck.
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Old 01-25-2004, 05:26 PM
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i heard thatgm is having problem with the dexcool
something about have it crystallized. shurgs?
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Old 01-25-2004, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by edwardh1
It does not show a washer that I saw, did I miss it?
Straight from the link I posted:


Left: Install the rad drain plug. Make sure the rubber washer is in place. (indicated by arrow)

Right: Check the rad cap for any tears in the rubber. Using a clean rag, wipe off any foreign matter on the rubber seal. Gently lift up the metal "hat" as shown by the arrow, and wipe off the "hat" and rubber under the "hat" This is the valve the allows coolant to enter the rad, from the reservoir bottle as the car cools.
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Old 01-26-2004, 06:38 AM
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Originally Posted by JaTaN
Straight from the link I posted:
Left: Install the rad drain plug. Make sure the rubber washer is in place. (indicated by arrow)

Right: Check the rad cap for any tears in the rubber. Using a clean rag, wipe off any foreign matter on the rubber seal. Gently lift up the metal "hat" as shown by the arrow, and wipe off the "hat" and rubber under the "hat" This is the valve the allows coolant to enter the rad, from the reservoir bottle as the car cools.
But if its like mine its NOT on the drain plug. Mine was stuck inside the neck. Since he did not see it, that was the clarification he was looking for.
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Old 03-06-2004, 08:54 AM
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Here is why the 2002 - 2003 (possibly other models) do not have the same rubber washer as on motovate.com.



There is a rubber o-ring on our plugs.
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Old 03-07-2004, 02:55 PM
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Does anyone have a picture of the Toyota Red/Honda Blue? This way when I go to get some I'll know I'm getting what I need.
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Old 03-07-2004, 03:09 PM
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Toyota says Toyota on the bottle.
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Old 03-07-2004, 03:33 PM
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Originally Posted by 2002 Maxima SE
Toyota says Toyota on the bottle.
Look up bob is the oil guy
they have a section on coolants
one or two of the topics have pix of the toyota red factory jug
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Old 03-12-2004, 06:38 AM
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Do it the right way

My two-cents:

I prefer to utilize a Prestone "drain and fill" adaptor. It allows you to flush the system via a water hose (t-adaptor) connected in-line with the heater hose. This gets all the nasties out andd you can actullay see the water run clear as it is forced out of the radiator filler. I like to add a concentrated cleaner in with tap water and run the engine for about 5-10 min. After that, drain. Fill with 2 to 3 changes of distilled water (as mentioned above). After final drain, add 100 percent coolant. The Prestone kit is $9-10 at Wal-mart. You can monitor concetration via a coolant gage (AntiFreeze Tester) to check if its reached your desired percent. To modify, drain a little and add back di water or coolant depending on which way you want to go. Run engine 5 min check again.

Maybe ****, but I frickin' hate changing water pumps in late model maximas.

So is it Zerex G05 that most like? I wasn't aware of the Dex Cool problems

Joe
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Old 03-12-2004, 07:34 AM
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[QUOTE=joecraps]My two-cents:

II put in nissan green OE stuff.
the old one after 5 years look great
so keep using it
$15 a gal
used 1 gal
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Old 03-12-2004, 09:25 AM
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[QUOTE=edwardh1]
Originally Posted by joecraps
My two-cents:

II put in nissan green OE stuff.
the old one after 5 years look great
so keep using it
$15 a gal
used 1 gal
Where did you buy it from? Is it in a Nissan bottle? I went to my local dealer and they only had orange Nissan AF. For green they use Prestone.
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Old 07-23-2004, 11:52 PM
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Do not run 70/30 or any other mix ratio, only 50/50. I noticed that the 96 max was the last one that had the 70/30 mixture mentioned in the FSM. In the 97 FSM and up it says to only use 50/50 and other mixture may cause damage.
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Old 07-24-2004, 09:55 AM
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Would you need to buy 2 gallons of antifreeze for a 4th gen (8-9 quart capacity)? Seems to me you'd need only one gallon, which is 4 quarts, so you have about 50/50 right there.

I read another thread (http://forums.maxima.org/showthread.php?t=324508) which seemed to conclude that taking it to a shop is the best bet. Bill99gxe, is your method as good as a shop which uses a machine to thoroughly flush and pressure test the system? I called around and Meineke will do it for $49.99 but I don't know if they'll take anything off that if I supply a gallon of Toyota Red. I might also put in a half quart of Redline Water Wetter if I can find some locally. So maybe $20 more (than Colonel's $41 estimated cost to do it yourself) for them to do it much faster and possibly more thoroughly than I could.

I am a DIYer but time is money...if this flush takes me all afternoon, I think it's not worth it. Thoughts?
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Old 07-24-2004, 06:21 PM
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anybody got picks of toyota red coolant?
the jug pick?

so i can go to any toyota dealer and inquire about the OEM coolant?

thanks
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Old 07-24-2004, 07:11 PM
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Here's a jug pic: http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/...;f=37;t=000025

scroll down for the pic.
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Old 07-26-2004, 04:25 PM
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can some one rank the order of which coolant is best and why? what is the real reason behind using the OEM? so can i just call a dealer and ask them? there isn't any special number, or name for them?

honda-blue, toyota-red, nissan-green
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Old 07-26-2004, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by FishyMan
can some one rank the order of which coolant is best and why? what is the real reason behind using the OEM? so can i just call a dealer and ask them? there isn't any special number, or name for them?

honda-blue, toyota-red, nissan-green
tsk tsk.. you should at least try reading the thread first.

your answer is on the first page:
other domestic brands contain: "silicates and phosphates" in their antifreeze

run the OEM stuff because its either free of those or low content. If you asked the dealer for OEM coolant fluid i'm sure they will know what your talking about. If you've been there before, you'll find that you don't need specific part numbers just to order parts.
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Old 07-27-2004, 06:08 PM
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im getting ready to do my flush, first thing where can i get distilled water from? what is so good about the toyota red stuff?
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Old 07-27-2004, 06:17 PM
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You can buy distilled H2O at any grocery store that sells bottled water.
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Old 07-28-2004, 03:31 AM
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What is so good about the Toyota red stuff?
1) it is Japanese coolant made / design for Japan cars (silicate free) better for the system
2) it cheap only 11- 12 bucks (Nissan / Honda cost about 17-80 a gallon)
3) the Toyota supra swear guys swear by them
4) It gives off a nice reddish -- pink color.
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Old 08-01-2004, 08:32 PM
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I flushed my cooling system today, real easy. I used the Toyota red. BTW it wasn't 11.99, those guys charged me $16.99 plus tax. Gotta love the hungry dealers.

I did 50/50 and added a bottle of redline water wetter.
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Old 08-02-2004, 11:11 AM
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Did you flush the cooling system or just the radiator?
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Old 08-05-2004, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Colonel
Just because this is now a sticky I am going to record time and materials so that people can gauge what they need.

1) 2 Gallons of Toyota Red OEM. 11.95 X 2 = 23.90
2) 5 Gallon Catch pan with drain = 5.99
3) AntiFreeze Tester 2.99 (Prestone) = 2.99
etc
etc
etc
Thanks for the time and material breakdown Colonel. One question though, what's the antifreeze tester for?
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Old 08-05-2004, 05:10 PM
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I have orange :P
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Old 08-05-2004, 05:23 PM
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Heads up if you've got A LOT of mileage.

I followed the hot/cold drain-fill method above on my 150K mile car except I also used a bottle of Prestone radiator flush first. After a few days the radiator started leaking along the endtanks and 4-days later overheated/blew.

I'm not sure if it was the hot/cold cycling of the flushing or that the bottle of Prestone cleaner knocked all the crap that was holding the radiator together loose, but definitely SOMETHING happened as a result. Just a bit of advice incase you're going to get aggressive on an older high mileage vehicle.....find a spare radiator ahead of time.
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Old 08-20-2004, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by RichSpidizzy
Thanks for the time and material breakdown Colonel. One question though, what's the antifreeze tester for?
First time I have flushed a radiator this way without pre mixed 50/50. Wanted to make sure (I tested a few times over next couple weeks) that my mixture was good.
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Old 08-20-2004, 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by IceY2K1
Heads up if you've got A LOT of mileage.

I followed the hot/cold drain-fill method above on my 150K mile car except I also used a bottle of Prestone radiator flush first. After a few days the radiator started leaking along the endtanks and 4-days later overheated/blew.

I'm not sure if it was the hot/cold cycling of the flushing or that the bottle of Prestone cleaner knocked all the crap that was holding the radiator together loose, but definitely SOMETHING happened as a result. Just a bit of advice incase you're going to get aggressive on an older high mileage vehicle.....find a spare radiator ahead of time.
OH MY!!!! radiator!
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Old 08-22-2004, 11:42 AM
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Well I'm in the process of flushing mine now. I bought the Toyota Red coolant. They charged me $15.99/gallon.

I also just put in the Prestone radiator flush.
Hope the same thing doesn't happen to me, Alex.

I'm waiting for it to cool down before I run all the distilled water through it.

Oh, when I drained all the coolant out of the radiator and overflow tank, I got almost exactly ONE gallon out.

I think I'm gonna premix the coolant 50/50 before I put it in.

J.
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Old 10-01-2004, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by IceY2K1
Heads up if you've got A LOT of mileage.

I followed the hot/cold drain-fill method above on my 150K mile car except I also used a bottle of Prestone radiator flush first. After a few days the radiator started leaking along the endtanks and 4-days later overheated/blew.

I'm not sure if it was the hot/cold cycling of the flushing or that the bottle of Prestone cleaner knocked all the crap that was holding the radiator together loose, but definitely SOMETHING happened as a result. Just a bit of advice incase you're going to get aggressive on an older high mileage vehicle.....find a spare radiator ahead of time.

I was going to use the flush as well, but I called my mechanic and he told me that the flush uses a pretty strong acid and it is VERY difficult to completely remove it from the system, and so the remaining acid just sits in your cooling system, slowly eating away at the seals. So I just went the whole distilled water route, though I didn't flush until the drainage was clear, because I have to pay to dispose of the waste (yes, I'm a tree hugger and refused to dump it into a storm drain).
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Old 10-03-2004, 06:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Mizeree_X
(yes, I'm a tree hugger and refused to dump it into a storm drain).
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Old 10-14-2004, 10:29 AM
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I fail to see why a flush should be used unless your system was clogged to begin with, which you would know by having sporadic overheating.



The Toyota Red Coolant is recommended because of my personal experience on it with my 99 Maxima. After two years, I flushed it, and it looked the same way it did when I put it in....very little soot/residue had been generated.
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Old 10-14-2004, 11:05 AM
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I flushed because I figured it would help efficiency by cleaning out years of built up gunk, which could have helped my detonation issue. It didn't and I regretted the impulse buy, however the new radiator seems to make a difference in coolant temps/detonation although NOT indicated by the crude idiot temp gauge.
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Old 10-14-2004, 01:21 PM
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Avoid DexCool.
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Old 10-14-2004, 03:37 PM
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where would you go to recycle or process the used antifreeze? would any old gas station take it or do i have to take it to a processing plant?
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Old 10-15-2004, 03:34 PM
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"Nissan Long Life" vs "Nissan Genuine Antifreeze"

Is there a difference between Nissan Long Life Antifreeze and Nissan Genuine Antifreeze?

I have a 2001 Maxima. The manual says to use "Nissan Genuine Antifreeze". I know that the newer manuals say to use Nissan Long Life Antifreeze. Are they the same? It looks like the antifreeze my car came with is red. Is that long life? I plan to do a radiator flush without draining the engine block, so I don't think it is good to mix different kinds of antifreeze.

I went to the dealer and they only sell Nissan Long Life Antifreeze and Shell antifreeze, so I bought the Nissan Long Life.
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