Category Archives: Cooling

Defrost Can Cost.

Did you know? When defrost mode is selected, your air conditioning compressor is actively operating.

On cold mornings it is essential to operate your vehicle´s heater system in the defrost mode to clear the windows inside and out. In defrost mode the heating system should rapidly clear your windows for safe driving. If your vehicle has air conditioning it is important to know that when the defrost mode is selected the air conditioning compressor is engaged.

There are two reasons for running the air conditioning compressor in defrost mode. The primary reason for running incoming defroster air through the air conditioning system is the fact that it dries the moisture from the air and allows the windows to be cleared in a fraction of the time it takes a non air conditioned vehicle which must wait for the engine to warm first. The second reason is that running the air conditioning system allows the compressor and A/C components to lubricate throughout the year. This way the A/C system is ready in hot or cold weather with a minimum of corrosion-related breakdowns.

The main point of this article is to make you aware that if you have a vehicle with air conditioning you should only run it in the defrost mode when it is needed. If you are able to run your heating controls in the economy or normal heating mode and keep the windows clear, do so. This will save wear and tear on your vehicle´s A/C system and could potentially save you a lot of money in fuel cost by not running the horsepower-robbing A/C compressor.

Cool it!

Did you know? Your vehicle’s cooling system system is equally important in hot and cool weather.

Providing protection for your engine on both ends of the thermometer is a job for both science and physics. A close relationship between the coolant´s physical make up and pressure on the system are the keys to successfully meeting the needs of your engine.

Without pressure coolant cannot adequately control engine temperatures. Most cooling systems operate with 13 – 16 pounds of pressure on the system. Each pound of pressure applied to the cooling system drops the coolant´s boiling point approximately three degrees. For example: A cooling system with a fifteen-pound radiator cap will have a reduced boiling point of about 45 degrees. This is why we closely monitor radiator caps, hoses, hose clamps, radiator condition and any coolant leakage from gaskets. Any loss of pressure or coolant can be devastating to the cooling system. There are currently four types of coolant available: ethylene glycol(standard coolant), propylene glycol(Sierra coolant – less toxic), 100,000 mile formulas (new technology formulation), and recycled coolant.

If your coolant system has standard or Sierra coolant the recommended coolant system intervals are once every two years or 30,000 miles. If your system has 100,000 mile coolant then the intervals may be extended to once every five years or 100,000 miles. Recycled antifreeze may need servicing on a yearly basis depending on the recycling process. Most vehicle manufacturers do not endorse the use of recycled coolant.

If you desire to switch your older vehicle over to one of the 100,000 mile coolants you need to read the manufacturer´s recommendations. Mixing coolant types can cause problems with some brands. Using 100,000 mile coolants with any system that does not have an aluminum radiator can also cause problems with some brands.

Whether your vehicle is new or older, its cooling system is a high technology blend of science and physics. Regular inspections and servicing are important for vehicle reliability.