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  #1  
Old 04-08-2008, 11:03 AM
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Coolant

I recall hearing that it's not okay to fill the radiator with coolant other than Mercedes coolant. Is this true? What can I use and where can I buy it?
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  #2  
Old 04-08-2008, 11:06 AM
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Zerex G05. It is the golden colored coolant.
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  #3  
Old 04-08-2008, 11:13 AM
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Yep, MB branded or Zerex G05 Yellow coolant. Green is bad, Red isn't good and Orange is downright obscene.

Available at a MB dealership and many general auto parts stores near you.
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  #4  
Old 04-08-2008, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ForcedInduction View Post
Yep, MB branded or Zerex G05 Yellow coolant. Green is bad, Red isn't good and Orange is downright obscene.
Color alone is not a reliable indicator of coolant type. Mopar 5/100000 antifreeze, for example, is orange. And it is essentially the same formulation (HOAT) as Zerex G-05 and MB coolant. John Deere HOAT coolant is green. Ford HOAT is yellow.
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  #5  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tangofox007 View Post
Color alone is not a reliable indicator of coolant type. Mopar 5/100000 antifreeze, for example, is orange. And it is essentially the same formulation (HOAT) as Zerex G-05 and MB coolant. John Deere HOAT coolant is green. Ford HOAT is yellow.
That is true... Unfortunately no test strip that I can find will tell you what you got. You just have to know or... when in doubt...change it out.
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  #6  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:09 PM
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Get the Zerex G05 or any other G05 labeled coolant. Look for the MB approval on the bottle. Any other coolant will ruin the alumininum and plastic parts in the cooling system.

Also look up citric acid flush and follow the steps if you have any other coolant in the system. I am going to have to do that to the SDL very soon as I don't know what is in there.
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  #7  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:23 PM
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The Mercedes coolant is NOT an OAT, but a hybrid, don't buy an OAT thinking it's what M-B diesels need.

A good read: https://mbwholesaleparts.com/StarTuned/pdfs/AntiFreeDec04.pdf
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  #8  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LUVMBDiesels View Post
Get the Zerex G05 or any other G05 labeled coolant. Look for the MB approval on the bottle. Any other coolant will ruin the alumininum and plastic parts in the cooling system.

Also look up citric acid flush and follow the steps if you have any other coolant in the system. I am going to have to do that to the SDL very soon as I don't know what is in there.
Sigh... I hate getting dragged into this...

That is such an oversimplification that it can and does end up being both false and true.

Low Silicate antifreeze (for protection of Aluminum and Plastics) can be Green and can then have SCA's added to it to protect from cavitation damage in Diesels. However HOAT's come prepared to do that too. So while it is true that using a HOAT will protect it is also true that using a Low Silicate with an added SCA will do the same. So it is NOT true that using anything other than Zerex G05 (or any other G-05) will automatically damage these things. And you got more to worry about to be damaged in a Diesel motor than those things. You got cylinder walls that would be more important if the Antifreeze did not prevent cavitation damage. I would be more worried about that! In this particular Car being discussed, it came with a HOAT/G-05 as Mecedes used this about 1984 and beyond. So I would use it for certain. And many find it easier to use than testing for SCA's and constantly replenishing SCA's. But cavitation existed long before HOAT and was controlled by SCA's back in the day. Heck... most manufactuers did not switch to HOAT until like after 94 or so. Ford not until 2003 IIRC. In fact I still use Low Silicate with SCA additives in my 01 ford. Its green and its good. The Additive is DCA-4. But I do have to test periodically and add if need be. About once a year I have to add 8 ounces. They all used Low Silicate Antifreeze with SCA additives up until then. And most times it was Green. Problem is that many of the end users didn't bother to check levels and keep the additives up. So its just easier to use a HOAT. And some people will find if they do not change a HOAT at a reasonable frequency it will lose its anti-cavitation properties too. But it eliminates all the bother in between. There are some die hard truck diesel mechanics that will not use HOAT but prefer Low Silicate with SCA. They can test it for SCA. They trust it. They can even buy coolant filters that introduce it a little at a time. Precharged so to speak.

Its a complicated issue. And color is sort of a shifting fad.

All that to end up telling you to use the G-05 but... and to change it out if your not sure.... but... I thought it was important to say.
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  #9  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cphilip View Post
All that to end up telling you to use the G-05 but... and to change it out if your not sure.... but... I thought it was important to say.
and well said it was. Very good explanation. (and I fall into the old school truck mechanic category. ie-Nalcool)
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  #10  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:38 PM
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I'm still not convinced to switch my truck over... partly because Ford doesn't (last I checked) condone it. They do use HOAT in the newer trucks. And many a person has switched their older trucks over without any problems. But the fact I cannot test something makes me sort of worried about it.

Dunno what I am going to do with this old 83 Merc. Right now I am debating but leaning to the change over to HOAT. Whats your thoughts on that HDB? What would you do? Low Silacate with DCA-4? Or switch to HOAT after ample flushings? It currently and recently has Green in it. I didn't put it in but it is very freshly done so by a Independent Mercedes Mechanic I am swornly told. So I got to either check what Green and see if the SCA stick shows up any DCA or not... or Change it either way.

The main thing that has me leaning towards the HOAT in this case is that I do not like to run DCA-4 without a Coolant filtration system. Because it can percipitate out and form sand if its level gets too high. And then do as much damage as cavitation. Eating water pumps and such. And this car doesn't have one nor as good a place to add one as the Truck did.

Last edited by cphilip; 04-08-2008 at 12:44 PM.
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  #11  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:48 PM
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On mine, I flush 'em good and switch over to G-05 when I get a new one. Change out any suspicious looking hoses and put in a new stat if its in question. It just seemed easier than the test and add method and then I know where it stands going forward. I did consider adding a precharge filter, but decided against it in the end as these systems flow a little different than a truck and space is at such a premium under the hood. The filtration is a nice thing to have though. I do use a test strip once in awhile just for the heck of it, always tests good.

I am pretty conscious of it. I replaced a few heavy truck rads in the early 90's due to silicate dropout. Those where hard learned lessons.
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  #12  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:58 PM
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Sounds good. Thanks for the input. I think I will start that process over the next few days. My plan (and please critique)

Drain radiator and suck out overflow tank (into proper container probably using the Mity Vac recovery tank). Then refill with tap water. Run the 8 miles to work. Get to work and drain again. At end of day refill with Tap water, Run back home. Do this for two days. 4 changes. This should pretty much dilute and remove all Green.

Then add Deionized Distilled water and G-05 mixture at about (now this gets tricky because I need to calculate the amount of water retained in the system)... need help with that part... The plan is not exactly complete from that point. Might should add one fill with Deionized Distilled? But want to end up about 50:50 so I know I need to compensate for the retained water.

Its very warm here and the run between home and here is just enough to get up to temperature for like 5-6 miles run.
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  #13  
Old 04-08-2008, 01:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cphilip View Post
Sigh... I hate getting dragged into this...

That is such an oversimplification that it can and does end up being both false and true.

Low Silicate antifreeze (for protection of Aluminum and Plastics) can be Green and can then have SCA's added to it to protect from cavitation damage in Diesels. However HOAT's come prepared to do that too. So while it is true that using a HOAT will protect it is also true that using a Low Silicate with an added SCA will do the same. So it is NOT true that using anything other than Zerex G05 (or any other G-05) will automatically damage these things. And you got more to worry about to be damaged in a Diesel motor than those things. You got cylinder walls that would be more important if the Antifreeze did not prevent cavitation damage. I would be more worried about that! In this particular Car being discussed, it came with a HOAT/G-05 as Mecedes used this about 1984 and beyond. So I would use it for certain. And many find it easier to use than testing for SCA's and constantly replenishing SCA's. But cavitation existed long before HOAT and was controlled by SCA's back in the day. Heck... most manufactuers did not switch to HOAT until like after 94 or so. Ford not until 2003 IIRC. In fact I still use Low Silicate with SCA additives in my 01 ford. Its green and its good. The Additive is DCA-4. But I do have to test periodically and add if need be. About once a year I have to add 8 ounces. They all used Low Silicate Antifreeze with SCA additives up until then. And most times it was Green. Problem is that many of the end users didn't bother to check levels and keep the additives up. So its just easier to use a HOAT. And some people will find if they do not change a HOAT at a reasonable frequency it will lose its anti-cavitation properties too. But it eliminates all the bother in between. There are some die hard truck diesel mechanics that will not use HOAT but prefer Low Silicate with SCA. They can test it for SCA. They trust it. They can even buy coolant filters that introduce it a little at a time. Precharged so to speak.

Its a complicated issue. And color is sort of a shifting fad.

All that to end up telling you to use the G-05 but... and to change it out if your not sure.... but... I thought it was important to say.
I thought that was what I said... Use the G-05. At least they should look for the MB seal of approval on the bottle if they don't use Zerex or MB branded coolant.

here is information source Valvoline.com:
FAQ

What is unique about Zerex G-05?
Zerex G-05 is an ethylene glycol based coolant with an HOAT (Hybrid Organic Acid Technology) inhibitor package. It is phosphate free, fully formulated (contains nitrite) and protects against hard water deposits and corrosion. As a testament to the quality, Mercedes has been using this formula for over 20 years.

What is a HOAT coolant and why is it different from conventional and extended life coolants?
An HOAT coolant uses both inorganic and organic inhibitors. HOAT coolants offer the best of all technologies for both immediate and long lasting protection. Inorganic inhibitors provide fast acting aluminum engine protection from boiling and erosion while the organic materials offer non-depleting, long term protection.

What vehicles use Zerex G-05 in the factory fill and what is the dye color?
1984 Mercedes and beyond (light yellow)
1990 Deere and Company vehicles and beyond (green)
2001 Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep and beyond (orange)
2002 Ford, Lincoln and Mercury trucks and SUVS and beyond (yellow)
2003 Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury automobiles and beyond (yellow)

What aftermarket products are approved by Ford and Chrysler?
Ford, Lincoln, Mercury brands - Ford Motorcraft Gold and Zerex G-05
Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep brands –Mopar 5/100 Antifreeze and Zerex G-05

What is the difference between these products?
All products use the Zerex G-05 formulation. The only difference is the dye color.

Are extended life coolants compatible with G-05? And vice versa?
Mix coolant types in an emergency but for optimum long life protection it is best to use the OEM recommended fluid exclusively.

Can you use an extended life coolant in a Ford and Chrysler vehicle?
Both the Ford and Chrysler owners’ manuals do not recommend using unapproved extended life products such as DEX-COOL or equivalents in their vehicles and state that improper maintenance may invalidate the warranty of the cooling system. In addition, many vehicles are not designed for DEX-COOL or equivalent organic acid, extended life coolants. For example DaimlerChrysler is reported to have experienced solder corrosion issues in heater cores with some DEX-COOL type fluids.


Can Zerex G-05 be used in diesel applications?
Yes. Zerex G-05 is a fully formulated (nitrite containing) coolant that will help protect diesel engine cylinder liners from pitting corrosion. It has also been approved by Cummins and Deere & Company.

Is it safe to use Zerex G-05 in European and Japanese manufactured vehicles?
Zerex G-05 is compatible with Japanese and European cooling systems as an aftermarket equivalent. Consult the owner’s manual for manufacturer recommendations and warranty information.

The original post was about a 1983 car, so he might be Ok with regular antifreeze. Does anybody know about G-05 in cars older than '84?

FWIW, I always used G-05 in my 1981 300SD with good results...
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  #14  
Old 04-08-2008, 01:13 PM
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Many coolants show an "approval" for use in M-B automobiles, which means nothing IMO.

What is important is what Mercedes-Benz uses, and considers adequate for their diesel automobiles, BIG difference.

Stick with M-B coolant or Zerex G-05, I don't see how this is a problem.

Yes, a generic diesel coolant can prevent cavitation pitting of cylinder liners, if the Mercedes-Benz diesel engine were a wet-sleeve engine this would be a bigger issue, ... but it is important. Still, is the generic low-silicate formula tested and approved for use in your Mercedes-Benz heating/cooling system? I use Caterpillar coolant and SCA in my Cat, not in my Mercedes. I use Mercedes/Zerex G-05 in my Mercedes, not in my CAT. Engines and cooling systems are much more expensive than a couple of gallons of generic coolant will save you.

Does the Mercedes heating/cooling system use the same rubber seals, monovalve parts, radiator plastics and metals, heater core metallurgy, et al as the Powerstroke? Gamble your money, place your bets, ...
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Last edited by babymog; 04-08-2008 at 07:43 PM.
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  #15  
Old 04-08-2008, 01:38 PM
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Yes... you all said it... but you simply OVER stated it and in some cases left a lot out. Again... it reads both wrong and right.

Quote:
Originally Posted by babymog View Post
Does the Mercedes heating/cooling system use the same rubber seals, monovalve parts, radiator plastics and metals, heater core metallurgy, et al as the Powerstroke? Gamble your money, place your bets, ...
Betcha they did near a bout back in 83 and behind... And yea... I bet they do use similar plastics even now. But that was not even the point anyway. I fyou don't get it then your not open minded about the discussion. It was all a progressive thing....

But remember... the plastics and metals were the reason for Low Silicate being developed... and that was Green in most cases when it came out back in the the day. HOAT is just the latest greatest edition of a Low (well almost no) silicate that is designed to do more than just protect plastics and metals. It's good stuff. Don't get me wrong. Just trying to make sure we don't this caught up in this "Color is everything" mentality. It might just not be telling you much. You need to know for certain what you got in there.

If it please the court, I really do wish that the Manufacturers would stick to a standard on this color Identification. It would make all this so much easier to follow.

I betcha if we go way back to pre-93 will will find MB recommending something else then. They don't design around everything nor do they plan on testing and approving everything. Its a good guideline for certain though. I agree.
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