Anti-freeze costs add up. If you like to pinch pennies, then reusing your anti-freeze may be an idea you have mulled over. It may seem like a waste to use the liquid only once and then toss it out. But why pay more when you may not have to?
Yes, you can reuse anti-freeze, especially the non-toxic version. The only danger to doing this is that some particulates or debris have found their way into the fluid. You would need to do some cleaning of your cooling system to make sure nothing remains to harm it.
To learn more about this topic, just continue to read our article. It has the information you want to know about so you can decide if pinching a few pennies is worth the effort. The risk of reusing coolant is lower than reusing engine oil.
Yes, you can but the big question you have to answer will be whether it is worth it to do so. Some RV owners have done this but others think it is not worth the effort and prefer to use new antifreeze every winter.
The latter may be the best way to go as the shelf-life of RV antifreeze once opened and used is much shorter than if you stored unused anti-freeze in the original container.
You may get two winters out of the old anti-freeze so you do need to judge if those little savings is worth it. Some people will pinch every penny they can, no matter how small and there is nothing wrong with that attitude. But it may not be worth it if the old anti-freeze is contaminated and damages your cooling system.
Yes, it is okay to reuse old anti-freeze. However, you should take precautions as you never know what small pieces of debris found their way into that fluid. These little pieces can catch on to plastic pipes and scratch them or damage a valve or seal so you should make sure the old fluid is clean before reusing it.
When you are just winterizing your water system in your RV, the biggest worry is will you have enough for another winter. Some big RVs and trailers do use a lot of RV anti-freeze to keep their pipes from freezing up.
You have to watch out for the seals and valves. If you do not filter the anti-freeze, those tiny pieces of debris can slip inside and do a little damage. It is the savings that you get that make this idea attractive.
Depending on the size of your RV, etc., the savings can add and allow you to get a night on the town in some picturesque village.
There are 4 steps involved in this process:
1. Find a clean container that can be sealed tightly. This will catch the Anti-freeze and then keep out the contaminants.
2. Use air to blow out the current anti-freeze. Do not use water as that will dilute the fluid and it will not be as strong for the next winter as it was for the current one.
3. Store the sealed container in a cool, dark place till you need to use it again in the fall or early winter months.
4. test the stored anti-freeze. This will let you know if it is too diluted to use. If it expands too much, then it is not worth using.
When you go to reuse your old anti-freeze, do the test first. If it passes then you simply winterize like you are supposed to and you are done with this task for another year.
In some cases, RV owners have reused their anti-freeze for 2 to 4 years. And if you do store it, don’t skip the test step.
There are different filters you can use. How clear you want the liquid will dictate which filter device you will use. One owner used a paint strainer that had a size of 110 to 120 microns.
Another owner used a funnel with a screen at the bottom or a coffee filter. Both devices should work well. Even a fine mesh strainer will work. Just make sure not to use your wife’s best food strainer for this task.
If you do not want to use a filter or a strainer, you can catch the anti-freeze in a clean bucket, let everything settle, then carefully pour the fluid back into your water system.
The choice is yours and uses the right method and tool that works best for you.
This is something you would have to judge with each passing year. Some owners have used their old anti-freeze for up to 4 years. That seems to be a good benchmark to go by.
You may be able to use it for a longer period of time but you have to remember the shelf-life of this liquid. Once opened and used, it does not keep its effectiveness as long as the new pure RV anti-freeze does.
Make sure to date the container you are storing it in so you will remember how long it has been since you bought it new. But if the anti-freeze has been contaminated and you can’t filter it out, or water got inside, then it may be best to just buy new. Then dispose of the old anti-freeze the right way.
Reusing your old anti-freeze is a good idea if you live on a tight budget. It doesn’t take long to drain or store the fluid and it may save you time from running to the landfill to dispose of it.
Just watch out for contaminants, and shelf-life, and make sure your container seals up nice and tight. That way you know how many years you have to use and reuse RV anti-freeze. Pinching pennies in the right situations does not make you a miser.