This announcement is a game-changer in the North American coolant market. More is sure to come.
All U.S. Dealers
SUBJECT: New Shell Rotella® Ultra ELC Coolant for 2010 MaxxForce® 11L and 13L Engines
With the introduction of 2010 compliant MaxxForce® engines, we will be using Shell Rotella Ultra ELC Coolant in our MaxxForce 11 and 13 liter products. Many customers are asking what is different and why we are switching. The primary difference is that Ultra ELC is nitrite free. Key benefits include:
- Enhanced corrosion protection for the aluminum components in our cooling system
- Increased service life of 600,000 miles or 12,000 hours without the need for extender additive
- Same cooling and antifreeze performance as today's coolant
- Backwards compatibility for all cooling systems with OAT coolants
Below is a short primer on coolant technology and information on the new coolant.
Over 90% of most coolant is ethylene glycol and water. The remainder contains additives to prevent corrosion of all engine and cooling system metals, protect hoses, elastomers and seals, and aid in heat transfer from the engine to the coolant. The corrosion inhibitors make a huge difference, and that is what's changing as we move to the new coolant.
There are two categories of inhibitors used in antifreeze – inorganic oxides and organic additives. Within each category are several different inhibitors that can be combined and that protect in different ways.
- Traditional (originally green) coolants utilize Inorganic Additive Technology (IAT) and contain inorganic oxides usually silicates, phosphates and borates. The inhibitors create a protective barrier to inhibit corrosion and are used up relatively quickly. The corrosion protection is then lost so these coolants need to be changed regularly – typically every 2 years.
- Extended life coolants (originally orange or red) utilize Organic Additive Technology (OAT) and contain organic additives like carboxylates and may contain certain inorganics such as nitrites. Carboxylates provide corrosion protection by chemically interacting at the metallic corrosion sites. Since they aren't creating a barrier like the silicates and phosphates, they last longer and therefore "extend" the life of the coolant. Other benefits are high temperature aluminum protection and heat transfer advantages.
- Hybrid Organic Additive Technology (HOAT) utilizes a combination of the two inhibitor types
Different inhibitors are selected to match best with the metals in the cooling system, hardness of water, seal materials and other variables in the cooling system. Shell Rotella Ultra ELC best matches the needs of the cooling system for International's 2010 engines.
Originally, different color dyes were used to identify the different technologies; however, there is currently no established color coding for these ever advancing coolants. Today, dyes are often used for marketing purposes and you can find antifreeze in many different colors including yellow, purple, pink, red, green and orange. Color is not necessarily an accurate indicator of which type of coolant you have.
Below is a comparison of the 2007 EPA compliant engine and 2010 EPA compliant engine coolants
Q. Why have auto and truck manufacturers moved from traditional IAT type coolants to OAT coolants?
A. OAT coolants provide extended life but also run into fewer problems in some cases. For instance, overconcentration of silicates in IAT type coolants can lead to silicate gelation. This can lead to plugging of small passages and loss of heat transfer.
Q. Do other manufacturers use OAT nitrite and amine free coolants?
A. Yes, Shell Rotella Ultra ELC, Mobil Delvac, Final Charge and Fleetguard ES Compleat OAT (Nitrite free).
Q. Can I mix the different kinds of coolants?
A. The systems are not necessarily forgiving of mixing of different coolants. There are circumstances where an unfavorable mixture can cause an increase in corrosion. And adding traditional coolant to an OAT will shorten the life of the OAT. International recommends using only the approved coolant with the 2010 cooling packages.
Q. Can I use the new coolant with older engines and cooling packages?
A. Any vehicle approved for use with OAT coolants are approved to run Rotella Ultra ELC, the new coolant is backwards compatible with current OAT coolants. It cannot be used with very old systems where traditional IAT coolant was used.
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