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Master Class Auto
Master Class Auto, ASE - Master Auto Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 253
Experience:  20+ years, full time experience. Specialize in Diagnostics & Electrical
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I mistakenly put windshield washer in my coolant tank.Is there

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I mistakenly put windshield washer in my coolant tank.Is there any serious problem if I leave it the way it is?
Hi Thin,

The good news is, no, it's not serious..

1) If you added say 6-8 ounces to top up, no worry. Washer solvent is basically water, alcohol and dye.

2) Anti-Freeze (coolant) is Ethylene Glycol. So - it's an alcohol too + two Diol groups (glycol)

OK? So basically, no worry...

However, to be extra safe, if you added A LOT of washer fluid.. Say close to a quart or more, simply perform a drain and fill - or flush, at earliest convenience. As the alcohol contained in washer fluid will be less stable when heated (can burn off) and may damage rubber parts too. It's not the same type of alcohol as in coolant. And it's a poor lubricant. It may advance corrosion too. OK? If you need more info let me know.

Master Class
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
If I added coolant occasionally to dilute the windshield washer,would that help?
Hi Thin,

Again, I would not worry unless there's 'a ton' in there. And yes, if you loose coolant over time, adding fresh Premix (50/50 water to coolant) will help. But a faster way, is to do a simple radiator "drain and fill" - using petcock at bottom of radiator. Nothing fancy. And also, if you loose coolant regularly, you may want to have your cooling system pressure/performance tested at a qualified garage. Good luck!

Master Class
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