: Coolant Supplement Tablet question



Realtor1
02-05-04, 12:18 PM
I have read a ton of post on this supplement issue, I have looked everywhere for the Bars Leak tube "Gold Seal" I cant find it...I can find quite a few other bars products for the cooling the black pellets, the small looks like aluminum shavings etc, I asked someone at a parts store if the 10oz Bars in a plastic bottle was the same and he said no....so...on with my search finally found some bars leak tbalets, they appear to be a bit smaller than the GM ones...are these ok to use?

Also there are some posts that say put 3 tablets in the bottom hose on the radiator and than I have heard to put 6 in the top hose, to crush some say not to crush....what is the "correct" way if there is one?

Ok..my last stupid question for the day ( I hope) the oil that comes out when you disconnect the two lines on the Pass side of the adiator...is that trans fluid or oil....mine does not look like trans fluid and seems to be a bit thicker than oil...I have new trans fluid from doing new shift solenoids back in Oct 03....any ideas?....getting ready to re install my alt and figure may as well drain and refill (no flushing...see...I do listen :) )while she is down....


Thanks

Anthony Cipriano
02-05-04, 03:37 PM
I have read a ton of post on this supplement issue, I have looked everywhere for the Bars Leak tube "Gold Seal" I cant find it...I can find quite a few other bars products for the cooling the black pellets, the small looks like aluminum shavings etc, I asked someone at a parts store if the 10oz Bars in a plastic bottle was the same and he said no....so...on with my search finally found some bars leak tbalets, they appear to be a bit smaller than the GM ones...are these ok to use?

Also there are some posts that say put 3 tablets in the bottom hose on the radiator and than I have heard to put 6 in the top hose, to crush some say not to crush....what is the "correct" way if there is one?

Ok..my last stupid question for the day ( I hope) the oil that comes out when you disconnect the two lines on the Pass side of the adiator...is that trans fluid or oil....mine does not look like trans fluid and seems to be a bit thicker than oil...I have new trans fluid from doing new shift solenoids back in Oct 03....any ideas?....getting ready to re install my alt and figure may as well drain and refill (no flushing...see...I do listen :) )while she is down....


Thanks


The GM coolant supplement pellets and the BarsLeaks "golden seal" are the same material. The company that manufactures the cooling system sealer supplies GM with the material in pellet form and also sells under the BarsLeaks brand name.

You can usually find the BarsLeaks "golden seal" powder in the clear tubes at WalMart or ACO stores or most any decent hardware store. The BarsLeaks product that is in the various jars and bottles with brown liquid is acually the same sealant material it's in a kind of "rabbit food" sized pellet that is in the bottom of the jar. It is the same stuff - just soaked in the brown soluable oil material that is obstensably used to "lubricate the water pump". Sounds good. Totally unnecessary. As a last resort the stuff in the brown liquid will work, the pellets or powder without the oil is better.

Under no circumstances should you use the stuff that looks like aluminum or metal shavings. Nasty stuff that will plug heater cores and most anything. Check the BarsLeaks website for more information.

The material is just a sealer to guard against nuisance leaks in the cooling sytem. With aluminum engines it is not too uncommon to get some seepage due to porosity in castings and such and the sealer guards against such leaks that might occur over time as porosity and coldshuts in the castings open up with the thermal cycling of the engine. The supplement/sealer does nothing but seal leaks. It does not protect the engine in any way other than against leaks. The sealant works with both DexCool and conventional green coolant.

You might check the post in the "general Cadillac - non-model specific discussion" category above regarding the coolant supplement. Crushing the pellets is completely unnecessary. That instruction is a carry over from the 4.9 engine where the supplement was introduced into the radiator itself and there was not room in the end tank (due to the oil cooler inside the tank) to get a full sized pellet in. Just pop the pellets into the radiator hose whole and reconnect the hose. They will have turned to mush in the coolant before you have the clamp tightened.

With the Northstar the supplement (pellets/powder) must be installed in the radiator hoses to introduce the material into the bulk flow of the coolant to ensure it is distributed through the sytem. More confusion occurs because people put it into the pressurized surge tank and then run into problems with it plugging the hose from the surge tank to the water pump. This makes them think that they need to crush the pellets. There is little or no flow through the surge tank so putting the material in there will not distribute it through the sytem (so it will not work and they think it is ineffective) and/or it can clog the hose to the water pump because the material just lies there in a lump and does not disperse. The material does not "dissolve" in a classic sense - it stays whole and in suspension in the coolant and is just dispersed as minute particulates through the sytem. So, if there is insufficient flow to get it dispersed it can cause local problems if it is not installed in the radiator hose correctly.

I recommend that you put 6 of the large GM supplement pellets into a 4.9 engine or a Northstar engine. The service manual calls for 3 of the large pellets for the Northstar since less leak protection is needed with the Northstar since it cannot leak coolant into the oil. 6 will provide extra protection from seepages long term and 6 is the recommended dose for the 4.9 engine as the 4.9 CAN leak coolant into the oil so the extra dosage is required to maintain the adequate leak protection.

If you use the BarsLeaks golden seal powder - two tubes in a Northstar. The BarsLeaks pellets that I have seen are about half the size of the GM pellets so I would recommend 10-12 of them.

The stuff is just an organic material. Ground up ginger root. It works because it shrinks when wet and expands when dry. It will "clot" in a leak area and then expand on the "dry" side to seal the leak. That is why it wont clog heater cores. There is no air on the backside of the orifice for the material to expand.

Pellets, powder, crushed, not crushed, top radiator hose, bottom radiator hose. All Okay. Either radiator hose (whichever is easiest to get to) will work the same as the bulk flow of the coolant goes through both to disperse the material through the system. Put it into the radiator directly of the 4.9 so you don't have to disconnect a hose.

The factory puts the sealer/supplement pellets into each new cooling sytem for the Northstar and they don't take the time to crush each of them up! The factory install was discontinued for a few years but is being reinstated due to the low but persisent cases of nuisance seepages and leaks.

ZSKI
12-22-04, 08:22 PM
I am reading so much about proper coolant maintaince...draining, flushing, not flushing, adding tablets, where to add the tablets, how many and so on. OK, I am convinced to change/maintain the coolant. So I drain the coolant (any problem with just opening the pet-cock?)...NOW, how do I get it back in ??? There is no cap on the radiator (99 DeVille). There is the surge tank, I suppose the coolant is entered into the system here. How/what is the procedure? Start the engine? Leave it run while you add? Will it suck it in? Do you have to burp the system?

JimD
12-22-04, 08:52 PM
....

The factory install was discontinued for a few years but is being reinstated due to the low but persisent cases of nuisance seepages and leaks.


Anthony:

My '98 has engine cooling system maintenance information on a stick-on under the hood including the part # for the supplement.

My '04 has no such sticker and the surge tank shows no evidence of the supplement falling out of suspension. Leads me to believe I should add the supplement at the first opportunity.

What say you??

Anthony Cipriano
12-22-04, 10:21 PM
Yes.

Anthony Cipriano
12-22-04, 10:26 PM
I am reading so much about proper coolant maintaince...draining, flushing, not flushing, adding tablets, where to add the tablets, how many and so on. OK, I am convinced to change/maintain the coolant. So I drain the coolant (any problem with just opening the pet-cock?)...NOW, how do I get it back in ??? There is no cap on the radiator (99 DeVille). There is the surge tank, I suppose the coolant is entered into the system here. How/what is the procedure? Start the engine? Leave it run while you add? Will it suck it in? Do you have to burp the system?



After draining the system refill through the pressurized surge tank where the pressure cap is at. That tank is an active part of the cooling system not just a coolant recovery bottle like on older systems.

Pour the premixed 50/50 coolant/distilled water into the surge tank slowly until the system is full. You want to pour slowly and consistently not suddenly fill the surge tank and then wait for the level to drop. The air cannot vent through the vapor vent line as rapidly if you do that. When the system is full, start the engine with the pressure cap off and rev the engine slowly to 3600 or so and then back to idle. Do that several times. That will force any remaining air out of the system. Refill the surge tank to within 1.5 to 2 inches of the rad cap. After driving for several days it is a good idea to check the coolant level when cold and top it off again if required to make sure no additional air was burbed out dropping the level.

Be sure and install the coolant system supplement inot one of the rad hoses not the surge tank.

ZSKI
12-24-04, 09:42 AM
After draining the system refill through the pressurized surge tank where the pressure cap is at. That tank is an active part of the cooling system not just a coolant recovery bottle like on older systems.

Pour the premixed 50/50 coolant/distilled water into the surge tank slowly until the system is full. You want to pour slowly and consistently not suddenly fill the surge tank and then wait for the level to drop. The air cannot vent through the vapor vent line as rapidly if you do that. When the system is full, start the engine with the pressure cap off and rev the engine slowly to 3600 or so and then back to idle. Do that several times. That will force any remaining air out of the system. Refill the surge tank to within 1.5 to 2 inches of the rad cap. After driving for several days it is a good idea to check the coolant level when cold and top it off again if required to make sure no additional air was burbed out dropping the level.

Be sure and install the coolant system supplement inot one of the rad hoses not the surge tank.

Thanks Anthony...that answers my question.