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Hey guys, my daily 2018 Crosstrek is at 50kmiles and noticed that the coolant overflow tank is empty and its a little dirty inside, like road salt coming through a gap in the top hose. Well I was wondering what coolant i should use, I saw the “Subaru super coolant” on amazon but was wondering if I can use something else at a the local autozone.
I have left over Mopar HOAT coolant but im not sure sure if it would mix? Could I use that or what do you guys suggest? Thanks guys
 

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Has Butch tires
2018 Orange Subaru Crosstrek Limited
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In the absence of any facts to the contrary I would stick to the Subaru coolant. While the idea seems pretty simple ("move the heat from here to there) the complexity of the damn system seems to steer me towards using OEM as the choice with the least number of potential problems. Hate to think of another coolant messing up a seal or something for a tiny savings in $
 

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Needs a Butch car
2020 Crosstrek Premium
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I would be mildly concerned about the different chemicals mixing and doing something they're not supposed to. It's not a big risk - I wouldn't hesitate to put something else in it if I was in the middle of nowhere and needed to make it home, but since you have the time and capability, I'd just use OEM.
 

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Use the blue Subaru coolant only
Yep..no brainer
Did you not check the coolant level at all? Since it is empty you need to remove the cap (cold) and insure the radiator is filled to the top. Subaru fails to join the modern world and have the overflow pressurized for some reason. They are not alone. GM was ahead of their time 30 years ago.
 

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Before you ordwr the super blue online, check you local Subaru dealer. I got mine there cheaper than any online seller could provide.

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Hey guys, my daily 2018 Crosstrek is at 50kmiles and noticed that the coolant overflow tank is empty and its a little dirty inside, like road salt coming through a gap in the top hose. Well I was wondering what coolant i should use, I saw the “Subaru super coolant” on amazon but was wondering if I can use something else at a the local autozone.
I have left over Mopar HOAT coolant but im not sure sure if it would mix? Could I use that or what do you guys suggest? Thanks guys
Subaru's long life super coolant (per the back of their bottle) is an ethylene glycol based product. Zerex makes equivalent coolant for all the manufacturers. Zerex Asian Blue is also an ethylene glycol based Phosphate-HOAT product and is silicate and borate free. I use Zerex Asian Pink in all three of my cars: Fit, Elantra, Corolla. Regarding your car, you certainly can call Valvoline (Zerex) at
Valvoline Products
  • 1-800-TEAM-VAL
  • 1-800-832-6825
 

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Yes some blue phosphate HOAT maybe compatible but for same price just get Subaru one and sleep peacefully, coolant nowadays doesnt offer better performance except longer change interval. I bought one bottle and still half bottle left after 3 years.
 

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Sahuarita, Arizona USA 2019 Crosstrek Limited
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Don't mix coolants. If you contaminate the factory coolant with something else, the factory coolant may no longer be good for 137.5 k miles. I think you will find that warning in your owners manual.

Even though brand-X may be "compatible", I wouldn't go with brand-X unless I was replacing ALL the coolant.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Ok sounds good, thanks for all the replies. Ill go to the dealer Tuesday to get the coolant. But I have one more question, the one hose that goes into the top of the overflow isn't sealed that good, and i can see that road salt/dust is in the overflow. Doesn't look normal to me and ill clean the tank but how can i prevent this?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Yep..no brainer
Did you not check the coolant level at all? Since it is empty you need to remove the cap (cold) and insure the radiator is filled to the top. Subaru fails to join the modern world and have the overflow pressurized for some reason. They are not alone. GM was ahead of their time 30 years ago.
Yea i opened my rad cap and saw coolant, its weird though because I don’t remember being low on coolant ever, just noticed it today changing the oil. Im not leaking any nor do i smell any. Ill keep an eye out for it.
 

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Get a jug from Subaru, and just make sure you add to the cold level after it sits overnight. After you drive for an extended time, top it off at the hot level when you park it. You should never have to open the radiator cap, just add to the overflow. I’m used to checking my 16 Trek. It doesn’t have a temperature gauge? Yup. Has a blue light, that goes off when the idle kicks down, and the temperature is recommended to be good to drive. I’ve topped it off this way on occasion, since it was new. Nothing excessive so far. They do really recommend the super coolant though, and not mixing with anything else.


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Older Hondas have the same light which stays on while the engine is cold. Toyotas/Vibes have speed limiters that keep your speed down until a certain temperature is achieved. Regarding coolant, companies have been making equivalent parts and fluids for years that meet or exceed manufacturer requirements. If you can buy OEM parts/fluid at a reasonable price, then fine, use it. But the scare tactics to keep dealership service departments in business is getting old. There are plenty of facts out there that negate the "I wouldn't use anything but OEM fluids" statements.
 

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...and just make sure you add to the cold level after it sits overnight. After you drive for an extended time, top it off at the hot level when you park it.
Wrong. Crosstrek coolant overflow tanks do not have "cold" and "hot" markings for the fluid level. Crosstreks have "FULL" and "LOW" level markings. The owners manual states that if the cold engine coolant level is close to or lower than the LOW level mark, add coolant to bring it up to the FULL level mark. Therefore, after it sits overnight you want to add coolant up to the "FULL" level mark.
 

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Wrong. Crosstrek coolant overflow tanks do not have "cold" and "hot" markings for the fluid level. Crosstreks have "FULL" and "LOW" level markings. The owners manual states that if the cold engine coolant level is close to or lower than the LOW level mark, add coolant to bring it up to the FULL level mark. Therefore, after it sits overnight you want to add coolant up to the "FULL" level mark.
You are correct as far as the wording. But my car always reads full, and doesn’t go past the full line after I have driven it for an extended period of time. And after the car has sat, it never goes below the top low line level. So if I were to top off to the full level when it’s cold, are you saying that it’s not going to be above the full level after I operate the car ? If it wasn’t 20 degrees right now, I would definitely go outside and check. I’ll definitely pull the owners manual tomorrow, and check this. I do appreciate you updating me. We are not talking about a lot of fluid. But if that’s the case, I’ll definitely keep it at the full level all the time.
**Ok, so I did face the cold,and pull my owners manual. If you are married, I’m gonna tell you something that you probably haven’t heard for some time. You are correct, Sir. Tomorrow, I’m gonna top off and maintain. Thanks.

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Has Butch tires
2018 Orange Subaru Crosstrek Limited
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Older Hondas have the same light which stays on while the engine is cold. Toyotas/Vibes have speed limiters that keep your speed down until a certain temperature is achieved. Regarding coolant, companies have been making equivalent parts and fluids for years that meet or exceed manufacturer requirements. If you can buy OEM parts/fluid at a reasonable price, then fine, use it. But the scare tactics to keep dealership service departments in business is getting old. There are plenty of facts out there that negate the "I wouldn't use anything but OEM fluids" statements.
I haven't studied this. If there is a set of coolant characteristics that are clearly defined by Subaru and another company makes a substance that meets those characteristics in all respects there is no reason to pay more for Subaru coolant. I suppose it would be like oil meeting SAE requirements. If oil meets all requirements then it seems to me you can use it. There are some subjective and some objective feelings about different types of oil, I get it, but if something is made to precisely accomplish what is required then I agree with you...although we all know that green coolant is better than red coolant...just because.\;)
 

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So if I were to top off to the full level when it’s cold, are you saying that it’s not going to be above the full level after I operate the car ?
When topped off cold to the FULL line, the coolant will rise above the FULL line when hot but there is plenty of headroom in the overflow tank for that thermal expansion.
 

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I haven't studied this. If there is a set of coolant characteristics that are clearly defined by Subaru and another company makes a substance that meets those characteristics in all respects there is no reason to pay more for Subaru coolant. I suppose it would be like oil meeting SAE requirements. If oil meets all requirements then it seems to me you can use it.
Look at your owners manual. In the case of engine oil Subaru recommends a particular viscosity and API/ILSAC specifications but not a specific brand, Subaru or otherwise. However in the case of coolant Subaru recommends Subaru Super Coolant as opposed to a set of coolant characteristics.
 

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Has Butch tires
2018 Orange Subaru Crosstrek Limited
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Look at your owners manual. In the case of engine oil Subaru recommends a particular viscosity and API/ILSAC specifications but not a specific brand, Subaru or otherwise. However in the case of coolant Subaru recommends Subaru Super Coolant as opposed to a set of coolant characteristics.
I guess the question is does the Subaru coolant have properties that are important or essential to engine operation that are not described in the information on viscosity and API/ILSAC specifications. Is there an objective reason to insist that only Subaru coolant be used? My point is that for a small amount of $ it is simple to be sure I will not unintentionally harm my engine/cooling system given my ignorance of exactly what is needed. Easier by far to use the stuff Subaru recommends but I can't deny that something else might work as well...in fact can't deny that the Subaru stuff isn't being made at some giant coolant factory that uses applicable base liquids and then dumps some food coloring into the mix to differentiate the same basic stuff.
 
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