DIY Coolant Flush

Nissan Rogue forum - Includes Nissan Qashqai and Nissan Dualis as well.
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darylzero
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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby darylzero » Mon Oct 22, 2012 4:06 pm

Rogue Noob wrote:For me, I only got about 1.5 gallons on each flush (The resevoir you keep filling up and emptying count) so I knew about 2 quarts or so was still in the system. I also factored that in when I added the concentrate. About 1 gallon of that, and fill the rest with water and you will wind up around 50/50.

For future coolant flushers.... If you do the vinegar I suggest that only being used for the 1st or 2nd fill, I assume you want 100% of that vinegar out before you refill.

Next point about the hose. Your are correct! Hahaha. I just went to look at the engine compared to the exploded views and have no clue what hose they are talking about. Removing exploded view only points to the throttle body when describing the acuator, how are you going to move that out of the way? I still couldn't find anything that looked like the heater hose. Since that direction is never mentioned in other DIY threads, or the one for the Element I just did, I would just omit that part (I can remove the direction or someone else can photograph the area and we can edit it in but I would just skip that part TBH). My hunch is that step is similar to most of the steps involved in the cabin filter replacement.... useless.

Maybe they are referencing a few of the heather hoses that go straight into the firewall, to the heater core? Anyone else think Nissan does a poor job with their sketches? They seem to leave a lot of important details out. Either way it seems like a minor PITA to locate the hose. If you really want to make sure air isn't in the system leave the funnel on top and have some coolant in it while you start the car. It may burp a bit.
I see the hose they are talking about it's the thin one in the back left (if you are looking toward the windshield). I don't know why they say that hose since it seems there is some kind of electric thing (that says consult on it) right under it and coolant shouldn't touch electrical anything.

Also, I talked to a Nissan tech and he said that drain screw is impossible to get at and it is the "bleeder screw". He said he never uses it and just props the front of the car up to "burp" the system.


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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby darylzero » Mon Oct 22, 2012 4:08 pm

TrevorK wrote:I really like the pictures you guys are posting of what the coolant(water mixture, etc..) looks like at various stages throughout your flush. I think it really shows the gunk inside your system and how just a simple drain doesn't do the trick. It's one thing to say it but it's another to actually show it. Good job!
Yeah I would not of thought of doing that, that is all Rogue Noob! If I had more patience to set something up to filter the water as it drained that would be cool to see how much sediment is coming out.

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby Rogue Noob » Mon Oct 22, 2012 4:32 pm

ImStricken wrote: Rogue Noob's looks like it swallowed a bug somewhere along its life lol one of his cups has a fly or something floating around hahahah
Hahaha! It was actually added as part of a MOD. Helped add 2hp..... :naughty:

Also, good point about the rear diff drain plug. Taking the top off first is the smart way, thankfully I read your DIY and followed those same steps. Consider this DIY modifiable if someone gets a better pic, or better instructions, or some trick to add (possibly the vinegar trick as an option maybe?) so this is a one stop shop for the coolant flush. I'm no pro, just wanted to get some pics out there because I know they always helped me out!

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby ImStricken06 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:58 am

PS: ADDED THIS WRITE UP TO:
post3302273.html#p3302273

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby travis2ninja » Tue Feb 19, 2013 6:45 am

So um, i'm gonna install a new radiator and my thinking of flushing the cooling system would be to,
Drain the radiator and remove the thermostat housing, thermostat and cylinder block drain plug.
Then just flush it with a garden hose from the top and bottom, as well as the radiator.
Then flush once or twice with distilled. Then just install the new radiator and fill with coolant and Burp/bleed the radiator?
:)

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby ImStricken06 » Tue Feb 19, 2013 8:07 am

travis2ninja wrote:So um, i'm gonna install a new radiator and my thinking of flushing the cooling system would be to,
Drain the radiator and remove the thermostat housing, thermostat and cylinder block drain plug.
Then just flush it with a garden hose from the top and bottom, as well as the radiator.
Then flush once or twice with distilled. Then just install the new radiator and fill with coolant and Burp/bleed the radiator?
:)
please dont use garden hose water in a hot engine! distilled so too cheap to use garden hose water and risk contamination. and dont over complicate things by tampering with block drain plugs & thermo's. want my tips to do this job right(steps beyond that of a common mechanic)?
  • 1. drain your old radiator.
    2. refill with fresh distilled water.
    3. with the cap off, turn the car on & allow the fluids to cycle.
    (you will have to rev the engine to about 2,000rpm to get it to cycle. just keep an eye out for the radiator to not over heat and blow the water upwards. its hot, so it will damage the paint. THE BEST WAY TO CLEAN YOUR COOLING SYSTEM IS TO USE WHITE DISTILLED VINEGAR & WATER. THE WHITE DISTILLED VINEGAR CLEANS THE COOLING SYSTEM AND KILLS OF ANY RUST INHIBITING PROPERTIES AND GERMS LEFT BEHIND IN THE OLD FLUID. a simple 50/50 mixture is fine.)
    4. drain the old radiator out again.
    5. refill the old radiator with distilled & cycle one more time.
    6. drain old radiator out.
    7. remove all hoses from the old radiator.
    (dont forget to pinch any tranny fluid hoses)
    8. take your new radiator and flush it with water to make sure all machining remnants & crap are flushed out.
    9. install new radiator and fill with distilled water
    10. turn on your car and allow to cycle again.
    11. drain water out and refill with 50/50 blend.
    12. tap and jiggle the radiator to ensure bubbles float to the top.
    13. run the car WITH THE RADIATOR CAP OFF to allow the bubbles to burp out.
    (add fluid as needed)
    14. the following day, in the cold morning (do not start the car) open the hood and open the radiator cap - and see the fluid level. you will most likely have to add more fluid after everything as vented and settled.
TIPS:
  • 1. rev your engine to about 2,000. that will help cycle the fluid.
    2. turn your heater on full blast. that will help flush the heater core as well.
(the reason i wouldnt tamper with the thermo and other area's is because its not needed if everything cycles appropriately. the less you tamper with, the less risk of breaking things that were not broken to begin with.)

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby rdub2k4 » Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:04 am

Good tips. i'll keep that in mind come coolant time.

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby travis2ninja » Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:12 am

ImStricken wrote: please dont use garden hose water in a hot engine! distilled so too cheap to use garden hose water and risk contamination. and dont over complicate things by tampering with block drain plugs & thermo's. want my tips to do this job right(steps beyond that of a common mechanic)?
  • 1. drain your old radiator.
    2. refill with fresh distilled water.
    3. with the cap off, turn the car on & allow the fluids to cycle.
    (you will have to rev the engine to about 2,000rpm to get it to cycle. just keep an eye out for the radiator to not over heat and blow the water upwards. its hot, so it will damage the paint. THE BEST WAY TO CLEAN YOUR COOLING SYSTEM IS TO USE WHITE DISTILLED VINEGAR & WATER. THE WHITE DISTILLED VINEGAR CLEANS THE COOLING SYSTEM AND KILLS OF ANY RUST INHIBITING PROPERTIES AND GERMS LEFT BEHIND IN THE OLD FLUID. a simple 50/50 mixture is fine.)
    4. drain the old radiator out again.
    5. refill the old radiator with distilled & cycle one more time.
    6. drain old radiator out.
    7. remove all hoses from the old radiator.
    (dont forget to pinch any tranny fluid hoses)
    8. take your new radiator and flush it with water to make sure all machining remnants & crap are flushed out.
    9. install new radiator and fill with distilled water
    10. turn on your car and allow to cycle again.
    11. drain water out and refill with 50/50 blend.
    12. tap and jiggle the radiator to ensure bubbles float to the top.
    13. run the car WITH THE RADIATOR CAP OFF to allow the bubbles to burp out.
    (add fluid as needed)
    14. the following day, in the cold morning (do not start the car) open the hood and open the radiator cap - and see the fluid level. you will most likely have to add more fluid after everything as vented and settled.
TIPS:
  • 1. rev your engine to about 2,000. that will help cycle the fluid.
    2. turn your heater on full blast. that will help flush the heater core as well.
(the reason i wouldnt tamper with the thermo and other area's is because its not needed if everything cycles appropriately. the less you tamper with, the less risk of breaking things that were not broken to begin with.)
Okay, only problem with that is, you have water in the cylinder block, as you say to add 50/50 blend to the radiator, it will be diluted way more then 50/50?

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby ImStricken06 » Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:27 am

travis2ninja wrote:
ImStricken wrote: please dont use garden hose water in a hot engine! distilled so too cheap to use garden hose water and risk contamination. and dont over complicate things by tampering with block drain plugs & thermo's. want my tips to do this job right(steps beyond that of a common mechanic)?
  • 1. drain your old radiator.
    2. refill with fresh distilled water.
    3. with the cap off, turn the car on & allow the fluids to cycle.
    (you will have to rev the engine to about 2,000rpm to get it to cycle. just keep an eye out for the radiator to not over heat and blow the water upwards. its hot, so it will damage the paint. THE BEST WAY TO CLEAN YOUR COOLING SYSTEM IS TO USE WHITE DISTILLED VINEGAR & WATER. THE WHITE DISTILLED VINEGAR CLEANS THE COOLING SYSTEM AND KILLS OF ANY RUST INHIBITING PROPERTIES AND GERMS LEFT BEHIND IN THE OLD FLUID. a simple 50/50 mixture is fine.)
    4. drain the old radiator out again.
    5. refill the old radiator with distilled & cycle one more time.
    6. drain old radiator out.
    7. remove all hoses from the old radiator.
    (dont forget to pinch any tranny fluid hoses)
    8. take your new radiator and flush it with water to make sure all machining remnants & crap are flushed out.
    9. install new radiator and fill with distilled water
    10. turn on your car and allow to cycle again.
    11. drain water out and refill with 50/50 blend.
    12. tap and jiggle the radiator to ensure bubbles float to the top.
    13. run the car WITH THE RADIATOR CAP OFF to allow the bubbles to burp out.
    (add fluid as needed)
    14. the following day, in the cold morning (do not start the car) open the hood and open the radiator cap - and see the fluid level. you will most likely have to add more fluid after everything as vented and settled.
TIPS:
  • 1. rev your engine to about 2,000. that will help cycle the fluid.
    2. turn your heater on full blast. that will help flush the heater core as well.
(the reason i wouldnt tamper with the thermo and other area's is because its not needed if everything cycles appropriately. the less you tamper with, the less risk of breaking things that were not broken to begin with.)
Okay, only problem with that is, you have water in the cylinder block, as you say to add 50/50 blend to the radiator, it will be diluted way more then 50/50?
i was wondering if someone was gonna catch that! ;)
diluted(50/50) modern day anti-freeze has freeze-up protection to -34F [-36.6C], and this is the average cheap stuff! so leaving some water in the system isnt a big deal.

if someone lives in an area that see's -34 or below, then they can amend the steps to add this:
11. drain water out and refill with half a gallon of 50/50 blend.
11a. drain once again.

(follow steps 12 and on)


take a look:
Prestone 50/50 Ready-to-Use Prediluted: -34F
Prestone DEX-COOL® 50/50 : -34F
Advance Auto Parts 50/50: -34F

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby travis2ninja » Wed Feb 20, 2013 4:03 pm

Well, it doesn't bother me about taking the drain plug out, and the thermostat housing. Might as well check everything while i'm doing it. All i need is a new thermostat gasket and some high temperature thread sealant. And if using tap water is bad just for flushing it i can use rainwater.. Just this way i can know its gonna be 80-90% clean and drained before i fill with 50/50. I bought some nulon coolant 5 litres of 100% concentrate and has 1060g/l of ETHYLENE GLYCOL. Also i do have problems with overheating so, it should be better afterwards.

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby ImStricken06 » Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:27 pm

travis2ninja wrote:And if using tap water is bad just for flushing it i can use rainwater..
Image

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Re: CVT Transmission Issues. (Fail safe, Whining, Temps, & F

Postby Thumper1971 » Sat Jul 06, 2013 5:04 am

Thanks for all the excellent advice!! My question is can distilled water be added to the antifreeze to get it from -60 down to -34 ? I hate to have to replace all the antifreeze, which is essentially new.

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Re: CVT Transmission Issues. (Fail safe, Whining, Temps, & F

Postby ImStricken06 » Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:44 am

Thumper1971 wrote:Thanks for all the excellent advice!! My question is can distilled water be added to the antifreeze to get it from -60 down to -34 ? I hate to have to replace all the antifreeze, which is essentially new.
yes it can.

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby SquiggyFreud » Sat May 31, 2014 11:49 am

Do we drain while engine is still warm/hot between flushes, or wait for it to cool then drain it and refill?

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby casperfun » Sat May 31, 2014 3:16 pm

I did a flush about a week ago. Nothing fancy and special. Just wanted to do a step above the top-off routine.

Because of time constraints, I did mine in 4-5 hours since I had to pick up my child from school. If your a precise person, you should do it during the weekends because it will take all day. I actually didn't take the lower cover off since it was a pain in the buttt to remove the plastic rivets which broke at times. I just did enough to bend it over on the front part of it and access the drain plug. I parked the passenger side partially on the curb. After I drain, I refilled with distilled water, then ran the engine for 5-10 minutes. Didn't really notice if the radiator fan kicked in, repeated 5 more times.

I drained like 6 gallons of distilled water until it became a very, very light shade of blue water. I got around 4 qts of coolant in the radiator and 1 qt of coolant
( the next day) in the overflow tank because it went almost empty the next morning. I am sure I have 2 quarts of distilled water flowing in my system. Not too worried. Still above the high mark. I know, not the way. But I am good.

As for the coolant, I used Zerex coolant for Asian cars. After changing the coolant my temps have been wild between 189-208 degrees. Mainly on the high end. It has been 189 degrees a few times. All this during driving mode. As long as its stays a steady at 192 or lower I am happy. Need to check soon. Having been watching it lately.

I would like to interject that the OEM BLUE Long-Life Coolant was a very HIGH quality coolant in my opinion and I kinda regretted taking it out. It was so clean with no sediment whatsoever even though I topped off with Global peak a few years ago. In the nearly 5 years, that Blue Coolant stayed a rock-steady 192 degrees 99% of the time when driving. Very consistent. Clean like water when drained. Never a problem or worry.

Hope the Zerex does the same. But it has the pink color. :inoutgay:

Does not match my BLUE indigo, but as long as it stays cool. Excuse the pun. :cool:

Anyways, my 2 cents. :mike

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby ImStricken06 » Sat May 31, 2014 4:18 pm

casperfun wrote:I am sure I have 2 quarts of distilled water flowing in my system.
thats actually good. i'd run 99% water in the summer. the only reason you need coolant is to lube the seals & moving parts & prevent the water from freezing. otherwise water is the BEST coolant to run. a lot of people think coolant "cools" by coming into the engine cold. NEGATIVE. coolant cools by taking the heat away from the metal, and bringing it to the radiator to be cooled off by the incoming air. (we ran 99% water on our racebikes, with a cap-full of water-wetter to provide the ample lubricity properties needed. otherwise, coolant is worthless. its all about the water!)
casperfun wrote:As for the coolant, I used Zerex coolant for Asian cars. After changing the coolant my temps have been wild between 189-208 degrees. Mainly on the high end.
its on the high end because having more water means its a more effective coolant mixture. the water gets hot faster, and reaches higher temps, thus its taking away the heat from the metal.
I would like to interject that the OEM BLUE Long-Life Coolant was a very HIGH quality coolant in my opinion and I kinda regretted taking it out. It was so clean with no sediment whatsoever even though I topped off with Global peak a few years ago. In the nearly 5 years,
that doesnt mean its properties where the same. clean is great; but it doesnt mean its as 'powerful' as it was from day 1.
that Blue Coolant stayed a rock-steady 192 degrees 99% of the time when driving. Very consistent. Clean like water when drained. Never a problem or worry.
thats because coolant is a bad conductor. the only reason we use coolant is to prevent seals from drying out, and to lube the water pump & thermostat & prevent the water from freezing. otherwise it doesnt actually cool as well as water does. water gets hot faster, thus being able to take away the heat from the metal better than coolant. the more water you have, the better cooling properties; but your freeze protection is less. in the summer you dont need freeze protection so run more water. you'll see your temp numbers spike, because the water boils faster- but the thermostat will open sooner allowing a cycle.

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby ImStricken06 » Sun Jun 08, 2014 5:36 pm

Image

i had another bottle (its not clear) that had really-really light green fluid in it. my car wont run hotter than 195.8F. runs good.
i used 2 bottle of white distilled vinegar. i used a tad more water than 50/50 coolant. more water gives me better heat from the heater & cooling properties

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby 88GrapIridium » Thu Aug 14, 2014 10:37 pm

I'm doing first coolant flush & change. It got late so I'll finish tomorrow.
Two comments and a question:
For those who flush several times to get old coolant out consider removing the engine block drain plug each time to get about a quart/liter more coolant out on each flush. It requires a 14mm wrench. It is a long reach down to it but it is just a plug and should speed up your flushes getting an extra quart of crud out each time.

1) vinegar is used to dissolve calcium deposits left by hard tap water. If one uses premix or distilled water only then there should be no lime deposits and a vinegar flush may just acidify the coolant without helping anything. If someone used hard water and you have calcium deposits in your radiator you may want to try vinegar, but I would rather avoid it by just using distilled water, it's 89 cents a gallon at the grocery store.

2) I could not get the reservoir off of the fender--the hook that slips into the fender is way long and the engine mount is in the way. I wiggled and maneuvered it every which way. I ended up just flushing it in place as best I could. Does one have to remove the fender liner?

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby darylzero » Fri Aug 15, 2014 7:10 am

88GrapIridium wrote:I'm doing first coolant flush & change. It got late so I'll finish tomorrow.
Two comments and a question:
For those who flush several times to get old coolant out consider removing the engine block drain plug each time to get about a quart/liter more coolant out on each flush. It requires a 14mm wrench. It is a long reach down to it but it is just a plug and should speed up your flushes getting an extra quart of crud out each time.

1) vinegar is used to dissolve calcium deposits left by hard tap water. If one uses premix or distilled water only then there should be no lime deposits and a vinegar flush may just acidify the coolant without helping anything. If someone used hard water and you have calcium deposits in your radiator you may want to try vinegar, but I would rather avoid it by just using distilled water, it's 89 cents a gallon at the grocery store.

2) I could not get the reservoir off of the fender--the hook that slips into the fender is way long and the engine mount is in the way. I wiggled and maneuvered it every which way. I ended up just flushing it in place as best I could. Does one have to remove the fender liner?
You just need to maneuver the reservoir off. It was something like pull back toward the windshield then pull out toward the engine. It took some finagling.

How the hell did you find the block drain plug!?!? I looked forever trying to get light down there every which way and feeling around. Was it behind the engine on the passenger side like the FSM says?

I also used the Lisle 24680 funnel the second time and HIGHLY recommend it for doing your coolant flushes. Makes "burping" the system very easy.
Image

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby 88GrapIridium » Fri Aug 15, 2014 4:32 pm

The plug can be seen in an inspection mirror with a flashlight. It has goo around it (RTV sealant I'm guessing, mine was white). Here are some pictures detailing where the engine block plug is, and what it looks like - When removing the plug, I went by feel without actually being able to see anything (since the cylinder head, etc. were obstructing the view). Btw, earlier I said that about a quart came out after draining the engine block - I believe it's less than that, I had a bit of spillage so it is hard to say how much.

General location: Image

Specific location: Image

Plug visible in mirror: Image

Close-up of plug: Image

Removed plug: Image

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby darylzero » Fri Aug 15, 2014 8:07 pm

Great pics 88GrapIridium!! Thanks for showing the exact location!

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby redhunter » Fri Aug 15, 2014 8:21 pm

88GrapIridium wrote:The [core] plug can be seen in an inspection mirror with a flashlight...
Wow, this is timely. I'm about to change the coolant tomorrow morning and since I plan to use the Nissan long life blue stuff that is already diluted, it is more important to drain the core before the final refill of coolant.

Thanks!

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby 88GrapIridium » Sat Aug 16, 2014 8:49 pm

For the record I measured the amount of coolant drained from the engine block after the radiator was completely drained and it was approximately 1 pint = 1/2 liter. Not all of the coolant hit the drain pan though, there was some splash/spillage.

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby redhunter » Sun Aug 17, 2014 9:51 am

88GrapIridium wrote:. . . When removing the plug, I went by feel . . .
I had a hard time getting my arm and a tool down there. Instead I pulled the front passenger wheel off and the splash guard that blocks the oil filter. From underneath there is plenty of room to see the plug and use a ratchet with about a 10" extension to easily remove and re install it.

I would also say that about a pint comes out. I little bit more came out when I lowered the jack so that the engine was sloping towards the plug. I couldn't contain the spillage that well, so if you are draining regular coolant I would at least cover the inner axle boot and wipe everything up afterwards; that coolant is nasty stuff on anything it touches. For me I didn't worry about the spillage as I had already gone through about 3 or 4 drain and refills of distilled water.

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby 88GrapIridium » Sun Aug 24, 2014 2:31 pm

Re: "I had a hard time getting my arm and a tool down there." I had to use a step stool and climb in there a little!

I gave it the old college try again to get the reservoir off but the "hook" on mine is just too long no matter how much I finagled. I didn't want to break it so I just flushed it in place, unbolted, so I could swish and pour out the bottom hose nipple. They must have installed the reservoir before putting the engine in.

Also at the end before reinstalling the drain plugs I like to rock or bounce the car a bit to try & drain as much as I can of any little pools of old coolant though it doesn't amount to much (but it is easy to do).

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby delayjf » Fri Apr 15, 2016 9:54 am

FYI - If you do use a vinegar solution to flush out your cooling system, you should also consider using a baking soda solution in a flush after using the vinegar to neutralized the vinegar's acids that a could remain and eat away at your system

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby fkyounggs » Wed Apr 27, 2016 10:32 pm

I did my first flush got my mile range up from 290 to 390 ;)

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby ImStricken06 » Thu Apr 28, 2016 10:53 am

fkyounggs wrote:I did my first flush got my mile range up from 290 to 390 ;)
you're trolling, right

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Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby blessedetherstar » Wed May 11, 2016 3:42 pm

First official post... But man getting that engine bay- cover off was a b**** and a half... Not only that, but 4 of the plastic bolts broke...I had to buy more, and found that they were only for the metal portion...so I had to buy washers and nuts/bolts for the front middle (which works in my favor since they will easily come off next time.).....anyway after that horror, everything went super smoothly :)

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engineer20
Posts: 71
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2014 11:13 pm
Car: 2015 Nissan Rogue SV AWD Premium Package

Re: DIY Coolant Flush

Postby engineer20 » Wed May 25, 2016 4:24 pm

is it the same/similar on a gen 2 rogue, and is the repr manual or hayens repair manual which just came out the same for the gen 2 as they stay till 22015 or is that just the rogue select? also, what parts on which other nissan is most similar to a rogue? they have altims, pathfinders, etc at junkyards, but rarely a rogue, so can i pull parts off an altima, or is it more similar to a pathfinder which is common in junkyards? thanks.


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