Be it winter, summer or spring, the coolant of a bus engine never gets a sigh of relief. Therefore, bus engine cooling system maintenance is not a seasonal-job. As the temperature goes down, this time you have to look for perfect anti-freeze solution. This is the time to protect the engine from winterization. Proper coolant mixture can provide adequate protection from freezing especially when the temperature drops below zero, typically -10 to -20 degrees.
Coolant Water Blend
Experts recommend 40% to 60% coolant to water blend if your bus is operating in an area where temperature ranges from -10 to -60 degrees. However, when the coolant is 60% or more, it will thicken the fuel at low temperatures and this will adversely affect the performance of the cooling system. Since readings of a refract meter are more accurate than readings of a hydrometer, use the refract meter for checking coolant/water ratio.
When the coolant is wrong
The selection a coolant was easier when we had traditional low silicate coolants. However, today we have a wide range of coolants for heavy-duty diesel engines. This creates a problem. Never mix any two random coolants. It will take a toll on the performance and life of the engine. However, the mixture is not always bad. The mixture of green conventional coolants and red organic acid coolants will not cause any serious problem. It will protect the engine from freeze and boil-over. However, you will not get optimum performance. A mixture of 15% of different coolants will not cause any problem. If you are using more than that, you should flush the system.
If you have a dedicated maintenance staff for your fleet, make sure that there is no communication gap between mechanics and drivers. A communication between the maintenance staff and drivers will prevent mixing of coolants. Leakage in the system often leads to blends and sometimes the driver adds make-up coolants and that too of wrong type. Therefore, the driver should provide on-road report to the maintenance staff so that mechanics can suggest the right coolant to drivers.
The choice of the coolant is usually decided by the manufacturer of bus. If you own a vehicle of Eldorado National Bus, you should use the coolant suggested in the manual. Or, you can take advice from the staff of an authorized dealership providing Eldorado National Bus Parts for sale. There are several authorized bus dealerships in Florida from where you can buy used and new buses of all popular brands and also genuine parts and accessories of these brands.