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Distilled v. Tap Water

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  • Distilled v. Tap Water

    I just received my new radiator from RMSCI and am planning on using Water with Water Wetter.
    Is there any advantage to using Distilled water over Tap water in the cooling system?

    Thanks,
    Scott

  • #2
    Distilled will have fewer dissolved minerals, so it should (in theory) be less likely to clog up your radiator over time. That's the only advantage I can think of.
    Tom "ELV15" Jones
    http://PIErats.com

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    • #3
      I imagine there would also be less corrosion over time due to the lack of minerals suspended in distilled water.
      I was taught to always use distilled water for topping off car batteries.

      Side note: As a kid, my brothers and I learned that if we stole some of dad's booze and then poured in a little water to get it back to the same level in the bottle, he always knew, because it would look "swirley" (like it does in a glass when the ice starts melting). However, if you add distilled water to the bottle of booze, it cannot be detected visibly. It's the minerals!
      - Sean

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      • #4
        I use water from my home Reverse Osmosis little drinking water faucet (kit for $170 at Costco). It is highly demineralized and should be about as good as distilled water. As a side benefit you get much better drinking and cooking water, too :)

        Actually, nowadays you rarely get truly distilled water anymore but de-ionized water that has been run through an ion-exchange resin bead tank.

        Gert

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        • #5
          Thanks for the input, I think I'll by a few gallons of distilled water this weekend.

          I upgraded the stock radiator with the upgraded race version and hope to make it last long.

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          • #6
            Hang on - I was focused on the tap vs. distilled question - you will run water+water wetter instead of the traditional "coolant" (anti-freeze)? I'm not saying that's good or bad, just that I don't know what is best to run in there. And I too will need to know soon enough.
            - Sean

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            • #7
              if u have a dehimudifier the water from that will be distilled. its the mineral (ion) and dissolved gas content that should be non existant. water wetter and anti-freeze work under the same principle of raising the cooling fluid's(water) boiling point and lowering it freesing point. a high salt or dissolved gas(ie soda) content will do that as well, but salts will lead to corrosion and mineral deposition.
              2002 SV zetec/sierra; yellow over green

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              • #8
                The best is 50% water / antifreeze.

                Besides the freezing protection and higher boiling point, the antifreeze lowers the dielectric constant of the water and cuts way down on the corrosion.

                Deionized water won't hurt, but I've had more clogged up radiators and corrosion issues by not using antifreeze than from hard water. Something else has usually given up first.

                If your local water is very hard than it might make a difference.

                The only argument against the antifreeze is if you plan to use the car on the track. Water / antifreeze is very slippery when it spills and causes immediate spins. I found out the usual way.

                Water Wetter will also reduce the dielectic constant of the water but is used in lower concentratiosn so I would't expect the corrosion protection of the 50% antifreeze mix.

                Doug

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                • #9
                  The system is all aluminum. I don't worry about corrosion too much, at least not enough to twink over.
                  Chris
                  ------------
                  A day you don't go a hundred is a day wasted

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                  • #10
                    I have the old crossflow motor at this time and the new race radiator, so that's part of the reason I thought of going the Water with Water Wetter route.
                    I still intend to upgrade to either a Duratec or SVT Zetec next year (upgradites).... but also want to put the car on the track next season.... that's the reason for the water wetter verses anti-freeze, and being in southern calif we dont have the huge temp change issues to guard against.

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                    • #11
                      Moose,

                      Actually from what I read when I was assembling my car, there are numerous types of antifreeze. It turns out that some of them *can* cause pitting/corrosion of aluminum parts if you have different types of metal in the cooling system. You can read about my coolant issues here:

                      http://pierats.com/nuke/html/modules...article&sid=37

                      This is the relevant bit though:
                      January 7, 2003
                      Filled cooling system using Dex-cool orange coolant. It uses OAT (organic acid technology) that is good for cooling systems with aluminum components.
                      Tom "ELV15" Jones
                      http://PIErats.com

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                      • #12
                        Thanks everybody, this is all great stuff. I hadn't put any thought at all into what I would run in the cooling system yet, but will soon. I've been too busy worrying about other things (and topping off the liquor bottles!). :rolleyes:

                        Good thread, Justin. I'm glad you asked the original question.

                        De-humidifier? I had never heard of such a thing, but I guess it might be something nice to have in a humid area.
                        - Sean

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by New2 7's View Post
                          I have the old crossflow motor at this time and the new race radiator, so that's part of the reason I thought of going the Water with Water Wetter route.
                          I still intend to upgrade to either a Duratec or SVT Zetec next year (upgradites).... but also want to put the car on the track next season.... that's the reason for the water wetter verses anti-freeze, and being in southern calif we dont have the huge temp change issues to guard against.
                          Sorry about that. I was thinking of Sean when I wrote that as he's got a Duratec.

                          I don't think anything I have is / will last long enough to worry about corrosion, at least not if I'm doing it right.:D
                          Chris
                          ------------
                          A day you don't go a hundred is a day wasted

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Just dont use plane or distilled water by their self. Add either water wetter or antifreeze to the mix as they both help preserve the seals and bearing in your water pump. Also just plain water can produce major deposits due to the minerals that are in it.
                            Martin Keller
                            Ventura, Ca.

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