DEX-COOL

The owners manual for my 2002 Envoy says I must use DEX-COOL in the cooling system. Elsewhere I read complaints about the product. What would be the problem if I used other antifreeze?

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If you flush the system properly, and use a high quality traditional product, I see no problem.
DexCool was never all it was made out to be.
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Oh you mean DEATH-Cool? Yes, horrid stuff. My suggestion is one of those prestone flush kits you get for $4 at wal-mart, flush the living shit out of your cooling system to get it all out, then use universal coolant, no worries of incompatibility that way.
-GV
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wrote:

For starters, if you don't get ALL of the old coolant out, it'll mix with DC and gell up. Major $$$$$.
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I have heard this, and accept that there is some possibility of incompatibility, but how much is "ALL". One molecule remaining? One percent remaining?
I may have to give this a try on a more or less lab basis. Will post the results if I get any.
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By "all", I mean, not just draining the radiator, but also flushing the engine block, heater core, all hoses, reservoir, anywhere antifreeze touches, until the water runs clear.
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I picked up some new Prestone at WalMart an hour or so ago (which I will use in my Dodge van, re replacement of evaporator core).
All the premium antifreezes there swear they are DexCool compatible. I didnt check out the Peak claims.
Apparently there is little to worry about if those claims are true.
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You sure it's not DC? What color is it? I don't have any personal experience with DC (I have a Ford, Isuzu, and a pre-DC Buick), but a friend gelled up her engine by topping off her reservior with non-DC AF.
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I was going to do a little test to see how compatible they were, but I found no "premium" fluid on the shelf that did not have claims to be compatible. I really didnt check the Peak fluid for its claims, because I did not intend to purchase it for use in my van. I have not opened the new antifreeze, so dont know if itis green or red.
I definitely have the old green coolant in my van now, and can save it and mix it with DexCool to see what happens. After observing, I will heat the fluids to near boiling for a period to see if temperature will cause the gelling.
Does your friend know exactly what was put into her radiator? And was this the only result, or did she have a GM product that had a gasket or plenum problem? Sometimes coolant is replaced because there is another process going on which is causing the coolant system to lose fluid.
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She has a 98 Regal GS, and put in Advance Auto's store brand coolant (non-DC) in her reservoir to top it off. IIRC, she said the mechanic told her she had the "orange" coolant in her car. Her reservoir and hose got gelled up. She had a flush done and everything seems OK now. Apparently she didn't put so much in as to gell up the entire engine. I guess the AA AF didn't mix much beyond the plastic tank. AFAIK, she's had no head gasket issues, or at least none she's mentioned to me.
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wrote:

She is in the right year range to have some gasket or plenum problems. I dont know which engine she has, but some of them are problematic.
By the way, the new Prestone I bought is fluorescent yellow...neither red nor green. So I will do this test, using the old green coolant when I drain the system.
It is a matter of curiosity more than doubting the problem may exist.
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She has the 3.8L V6 MPI.
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This is the one that has the plastic plenum problem. When ours failed, it did so catastrophically, with coolant entering the cylinders and a little getting into the oil. She should be aware that this could happen. Otherwise, when (or if) it happens, she could do a fair amount of damage.
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Eh, her car, her issue. Her brother is a mechanic (why she didn't consult him about the AF, I don't know). Personally, I would never have purchaed the car. She said her brother mentioned something about a gasket needing to be replaced, but I'm about 99.99% sure it wasn't a gasket in contact with water.
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