First, Gary , thanks for reposting my blatant plug for PartsShop!
Bill loves that stuff!
Second, Gary zrusny, "Dexcool" is a GM specification for antifreeze, not a brand name. Havoline is just one company who makes a product to those specifications. If there is a clogging problem using it, then it's likely to be due to mixing high silicate antifreeze with low silicate antifreeze, or not thoroughly
flushing the cooling system before installing it.
And no, Dexcool is not "the same basic formulation" as the MB. Every automoblle manufacturer is trying to copy Mercedes, and now calling for antifreeze/coolant under their own proprietary specs. Ford, Saturn, and of course Chrysler are also on the program with their own specs as well. There are exhaustive threads on this subject already on this forum. look at either the current "Corrosion/Coolin Sys. Q?" one or the old dredged up "Coolant RED vs. GREEN" thread that has been resurfaced.
Now, Bill, "the connection where the top hose fits broke"
on your 300SD because they ALL do. The newer ones have a metal sleeve inserted in them to prevent the problem. I personally, along with Gary, have heard that the phosphates help dry out the plastic and make it more brittle, so believe what you want. If anything, Mercedes Antifreeze/coolant product should help postpone it more than cause it.
Also, your question, "If it's so good, why don't they let the public buy it?"
They do, from a Mercedes dealer, and suppliers like PartsShop on the internet. Why doesn't Valvoline sell it directly as a Valvoline product? Simple answer - BASF used to make the coolant for Mercedes in the U.S., and decided that they didn't want to anymore, so they licensed the production rights of their antifreeze/coolant division to Valvoline.
I'm sure that the agreement was inclusive of a "grandfather" contract with Mercedes to exclusively manufacture the product for them, at least for a specified period of time. Eventually, it may be available as a Valvoline product, but so far Valvoline already has their own non-phosphate extended life antifreeze/coolant they market. So what's the benefit to them to do so?
"They also laughed when I told them of its magic powers"
of course they did, they don't sell it, and haven't done their homework on antifreeze/coolants. So did all of the auto parts stores I called at first, along with all of the radiator shops. They don't know squat about this subject. :p
But who's going to admit that they don't know something when it's more fun to laugh and ridicule something you know nothing about instead?