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Old 11-29-2015, 01:11 PM   #1
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Coolant recommendations for DT466

Hey knowledgeable folks...I need some advice.

What coolant do you recommend for wet sleeve engines? I have been doing some research and it seems like it is more complicated than other engines due to the cavitation worries. This is the first diesel engine I have owned or worked on, so I do not have the benefit of experience.

It's a 1993 mechanical DT466. The coolant currently in it is green and it has a Fleetguard coolant filter which I understand comes precharged with the right SCAs, and you are supposed to be able to leave the coolant system alone. But of course I did not leave it alone, and lost a bunch of coolant when removing the rear heater, hoses and the drivers side front heater in order to work on the floor. Some or all of this stuff is going back in. The block is appropriately full as far as I can tell, but the heater system is completely empty.

So...what can I add to the system? Can I use regular green silicate based antifreeze? I can get some pink stuff locally with the DCA-2 additives premixed in, but DCA-4 (which I believe is what my coolant filter is) is harder to come by. Based on its appearance I suspect the school district used regular green in conjunction with the precharged filter, but I don't know for sure. I want to top it off now so that I can start the bus, let the engine get some exercise, and use the front heaters to warm and dry out the front part of the bus for work. Maybe drive it a little in this condition, but no long trips. Then once the heater system is completely done I was going to do a complete drain, flush and refill, though I'd rather not if it's not necessary.
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Old 11-29-2015, 07:08 PM   #2
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From what I've read, the older International engines (pre 1999) used the standard green coolant that required periodic addition of SCA anti-cavitation stuff.

I replaced mine with Walmart Supertech antifreeze but regardless, look for a coolant that meets the ASTM D4985 standard.

The newer International engines use an extended life red coolant that doesn't require the SCA additives. Not sure whether you could replace the green with the red, maybe one of the "real" bus guys can chime in here.
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Old 11-30-2015, 05:48 AM   #3
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go to napa truck parts store. they sell the bottles of additive. you also need to check and correct PH
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Old 11-30-2015, 10:19 AM   #4
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Cavitation is more common on wet liners but can be a problem on parent sleeve engines as well. Best bet is to refer to the manufacturer for specs. Everything else is hearsay and there are TONS of very opinionated views on this topic online. I'm definitely going with the Cummins recommendation for my engine.

Is it a little more expensive?...ya...but so is the engine.
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Old 11-30-2015, 01:25 PM   #5
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I'd use the regular green. Use test strips to verify ph balance, freeze point and sca level. Those should all be able to be had at most truck shops(I get ours from napa, but your counterman might not be aware that they have it). Once you do that, check the levels to see if you even need to add anything.

Napa kool is the sca charge that I use with the regular green. I believe it is dca2. We have no problems with it.

*I don't add anything to any extended life coolant unless specifically stated by the manufacturer(most don't). Those coolants are made more to be a set and forget type. The only action you're supposed to take with them is change them out at the correct interval or when the ph gets out of whack.
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Old 12-04-2015, 11:07 AM   #6
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Thanks everyone for the advice!
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Old 05-09-2016, 03:37 PM   #7
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How bad is it that I added 2 gallons of pinkish coolant (Heavy Truck branded - Fleet?) from O'Reily's to what seemed like an almost empty system, which did have green coolant? I've read the above thread, and wondering if I now need to flush the system and start over. Long story short, a ton of the coolant, if not all (which was green) leaked out when I replaced my compressor several days ago I purchased what I thought was the correct coolant to refill what I lost. It turned out to be more than I thought that escaped my plugged hoses. As I was headed to get desiel really quickly, it overheated. I was in a pinch and had to pull over. I filled it with what I had.

Thoughts on my goof?
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Old 05-09-2016, 06:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jontettleton View Post
How bad is it that I added 2 gallons of pinkish coolant (Heavy Truck branded - Fleet?) from O'Reily's to what seemed like an almost empty system, which did have green coolant? I've read the above thread, and wondering if I now need to flush the system and start over. Long story short, a ton of the coolant, if not all (which was green) leaked out when I replaced my compressor several days ago I purchased what I thought was the correct coolant to refill what I lost. It turned out to be more than I thought that escaped my plugged hoses. As I was headed to get desiel really quickly, it overheated. I was in a pinch and had to pull over. I filled it with what I had.

Thoughts on my goof?
sometimes you do what you have to do in a pinch.
Flush it and fill it with the correct fluid.
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Old 05-09-2016, 06:19 PM   #9
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Unless, everything that you added says compatible with all makes and models, I'd do a complete flush and fill. Then again, I'd still probably do a complete flush and fill because coolant incompatibility is something you don't want to experience first hand.
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Old 05-09-2016, 07:01 PM   #10
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The biggest worry is some mixes will cause a reaction where the coolant turns to a corrosive gel that causes all sorts of problems. Full flush would be a good idea.
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