How often should engine coolant be changed?

When should you get new coolant for your car’s engine? If your car needs its coolant changed, you might want to do it every 30,000 miles. Others don’t have it on their list of preventative measures to change it.

Vehicles put through “heavy service,” wherein they experience increased heat from activities like towing, may require more regular coolant and radiator flushes and fluid changes. However, regardless of how often or little you drive, many Chevrolets have a mandatory oil change at 150,000 miles.

A coolant change is recommended every 30,000 to 50,000 miles per the manufacturer’s maintenance schedule, but many service centers, including some at dealerships selling vehicles with “lifetime” coolant, claim it should be done more frequently.

This is why long-life engine coolant (often a 50/50 mixture of antifreeze and water) is used in the radiators of most modern automobiles, and it may protect the engine from overheating in hot weather and freezing in cold weather for years with minimal upkeep. Environmental regulators have put pressure on automakers to extend the time between fluid changes in modern vehicles in order to reduce the amount of used coolant and other waste fluids that must be disposed of or recycled.


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