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Forgot to put antifreeze in


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OMG I am so stupid. This summer I replaced my thermostat and didn't have the money for antifreeze so I used water instead. I forgot to replace it with antifreeze and the temps dropped down to 0. I drove my car about 2 miles and started overheating. (at this time I was already back at my house) I parked it and waited for it to cool and removed my thermostat housing to drain and replaced with antifreeze. My question is how screwed is my engine, I know subies can take a lot of abuse but is this just too much?

 

 

'95 EJ22 FWD (wish I had a '96 AWD Dang!)

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As long as anything freezing had room to expand, it shouldn't have done any damage, but there's always the risk.

 

If you drove it for a while it would have melted everything that was frozen, even if it didn't warm up all the way, there should have been enough heat in the system to melt the water. If you had any major cracks it should, and I say should, have drained most of the system. If you were still topped off the water after the drive I would assume nothing is broken.

 

All that being said, if it sat out again and refroze, the possibility is there again.

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To chime in again I have also heard that straight water can be bad for your water pump as well, something about the coolant having a bit of a lubricating property as well.

 

Being a over decade long pool boy in a past life, this part doesn't make sense to me, but I've heard it from multiple sources.

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To chime in again I have also heard that straight water can be bad for your water pump as well, something about the coolant having a bit of a lubricating property as well.

 

Being a over decade long pool boy in a past life, this part doesn't make sense to me, but I've heard it from multiple sources.

 

Absolutly 100% true. Plus anti corrosion properties among other things.

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If it's bad for the water pump to run without anti-freeze or not depends on the design of the water pump.

 

As for water having an impact on the engine block - that depends on the pH level of the water, some even recommend distilled water but that's usually excessive. However every time you fill new water into the system it also comes with fresh oxygen and possibly other contaminants that accelerates breakdown of aluminum. And the conductivity of the coolant/water also plays a role - especially if there are mixed materials in the cooling system like iron and aluminum. This can make a "battery" of the cooling system breaking down the least resistant material - namely the aluminum parts.

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Yes, water quality is important. I use water from my water system and reverse osmosis tank at home. Ph is neutral, no iron, lime, maganese etc. Pure water.

 

Or you can buy a gallon of distilled water.

 

Or you can run about a hundred grounds from the engine to everything in sight. :lol: (jk)

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Yes, water quality is important. I use water from my water system and reverse osmosis tank at home. Ph is neutral, no iron, lime, maganese etc. Pure water.

 

Or you can buy a gallon of distilled water.

 

Or you can run about a hundred grounds from the engine to everything in sight. :lol: (jk)

 

In a controlled lab setting, and in theory, yes. Distilled water should consist of only hydrogen and oxygen, in their groovy 2 to 1 ratio respectively.

 

In reality distilled water tends to be slightly acidic (maybe in the 6-7) range due to its absorption of C02 from the air around it.

 

SCIENCE!

 

 

Back to topic though, distilled water is definitely the preferred water to use in your system, for most of the reasons people listed. The minerals found in tap water can leave scaly deposits in the coolant system. Not a giant deal in large open corridors like the hoses, but can really wreck havoc in the tight spaces of your radiator through a combination of clogged passages and the fact that the scale acts as an insulator and reduces the overall efficiency of the radiator.

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I'M LEARNING!

 

It makes me think of that viagara commercial where the guy overheats an old camaro ss and stops at a gas station to throw a bottle of water into the radiator. I wonder if he knew the harmful effects that water can cause on the coolant system :spin:

 

That makes alot of sense though; anything that isn't supposed to be in water should and will leave deposits on the walls of anything it runs through, most notably the radiator. And once those little passages clog...well...that's not good. Good thread guys!

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However the amount of minerals in a gallon of water is very small and hardly any cause for concern. Only if you are filling new water daily that should be a problem.

 

Look at water heaters - most water contains minerals but only when you have a high mineral content in the water and has heated water for several years you may end up with a considerable amount of deposits.

 

As for buying premixed - it's a waste of money, it costs almost the same as the concentrated.

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However the amount of minerals in a gallon of water is very small and hardly any cause for concern. Only if you are filling new water daily that should be a problem.

 

Look at water heaters - most water contains minerals but only when you have a high mineral content in the water and has heated water for several years you may end up with a considerable amount of deposits.

 

As for buying premixed - it's a waste of money, it costs almost the same as the concentrated.

 

I had a water heater a few years back that was clogged up with deposites....but there was a lot of minerals in the water where I lived and it was a 20 year old water heater.

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