In my wife's 02 Cooper I use Bluecol antifreeze which has changed from the clear/light blue colour to a light muddy colour? Level is maintained and it has not been an overnight occourance more of a gradual change over the last few weeks/months.
I always use a 50% mix and temperatures are normal.
Maybe the system could do with a good flushing out first before you refilled it with new antifreeze?
Even using the correct antifreeze the systems can eventually scale up, especially in hard water areas if you use plain tap water to fill it with?
Thanks for you replies. I didn't look before I posted but it would seem to be a common problem!
I changed the clutch a couple of years ago and flushed and added new coolant then but thinking back it has probably been changing colour since then.
Never had this before with other vehicles?
Just removed the expansion tank for a cleanup and found the coolant inside to be nice and clean although it is now a sort of fluorescent yellowy/greeny colour.
I thought it was brown due to the tank!
Tank cleaned up OK but the inside had a jelly/wax type of deposit in it!
Other than that it all seems OK!
There are a lot of different coolant/antifreeze types around now which don't always mix, and it is best to use the exact same type as the original manufacturer but often difficult to source any outside of Main Dealers, etc. Halfords stock several types but unless you do your own research beforehand they don't always know or supply the correct spec when asked.......
Another thing that may contribute to the colour changing, are the rubber hoses, as they get older they start to decompose internally, harden, and the black rubber particles get into the coolant, thats another reason to renew all the hoses on a 5 yearly basis before they start to perish completely.
The wax/jelly is not a good thing. I think it means you have over-concentration of anti-freeze (more than 50%) or you mixed older coolant with newer generation Gxx coolants. Flush your system thoroughly with clean water and then replace with new coolant mixture.
I recommend you use either G11 coolant (BMW recommended) or G12+ (VW approved). G11 is usually blue and G12 is pink. Green is usually the older specification which I do not recommend using for the modern engines. G12 is used on all VW/Audi engines, is more expensive but lasts longer (lifetime). G11 should last for 3/4 years maximum, but according to BMW provides better protection in that period. Also make sure you use distilled or at least deionized water in the mixture.
Nice to know about the Coolant colors.I used it many time on the old version cars and its results are good for that but i,m not using it on Mini.So if the results are better so now i use it this time for my Mini Cooper to change its color.If you want to know about the specs and engine number etc of your car.So have a look on BMW VIN Decoder.It helps you in a great way.
be very careful what coolants you use in these minis, some coolants are designed to run at a lower temp ie boiling point and lower pressure. The minis run hot and high pressure
Running the incorrect coolant will cause brown sludge the brown sludge in it, this is basically your block and steal components rusting away inside your engine.
You must Flush the system out properly as this sludge will settle in you heater matrix and rad so it's important to Keep these clean and clear, you can buy a cooling system cleaner.
Halfords sell the correct stuff this is the same spec as what bmw use
Just make shore you take time to bleed the system it may take a few goes
mab01uk has a few good posts on how to bleed and where to bleed
Just as a note Evans do a waterless coolant it is meant to be very good I personally have never tried it, but I now guys that have it in there cars and reckon is the best they have used. I don't think it's cheep but it's basically fit and forget.
In the current edition of Modern MINI mag they have a Mini converted to Waterless Coolant. It's quite expensive I think to have the initial conversion because you have to eliminate all the previous water-based coolant from the system. This involves flushing out the system a couple of times with the Waterless coolant and measuring the waste flush to check for % of remaining water in the system.
However, once done, (and it lasts for life I believe) it will increase the boiling point temp. so that it will not boil over in normal use. I know they use waterless coolant in racing cars where normal cooling is not possible and I have used additives that increase the boil point of water in my classic mini cooper with good results.
Knowing how hard it can be to bleed all the air out of a Mini cooling system when replacing coolant, I think this conversion is definitely a job for the professionals?
Anyone had it done to their Mini? How much did it cost?
Tbh Bleeding the cooling system is not hard at all,it's a very basic DIY job, people rush that's when the problems happen. That's why I say take your time don't rush follow the steps properly no shot cuts. But as you say if people are not capable or confidant to do it take it to the garage
To get anything else put in other than bmw mini approved coolant it would be a job for a local independent garage, so cost depends on there hourly rate
And I would not advise doing this to a car under warrantee it will void it for shore
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