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Coolant Question

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15
13
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
California
So in about I am going to do my first track day With some friend. The track doesn’t allow the use of antifreeze/glycol coolants. I dont really know much about this, so I’m wondering if Water wetter is good or I’ve also seen vp racing offer product. Also does this pose any eng damage?
 
I wanted to do this exact thing and switch to water only but I live in the Northeast and my garage gets below 32 at times. If I drained the radiator and overflow tank at the end of the season would I still be at risk for freeze damage from any remaining water in the block??
 
What about a little heater to keep the temp above 32 during those cold times?..........just a thought..................
I have a heater installed in the garage but it turned out to be useless. My garage is 24x30 with a full attic so heat just disappears and the heater would have to run constantly to keep the garage above 32 most days in the winter months (although we had a pretty mild winter the last year or two). My electric bill goes crazy just using a space heater in the house for a few hours (no gas service in my area). I use a large kerosene torpedo heater when I need to work in the garage during the winter and while it gets the garage nice and warm, it will go through a full tank or more of kero to do that and I can't just keep it running all the time.
 

xr7

TMO Addict?
727
856
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
10-20 Years
Minnesota
I wanted to do this exact thing and switch to water only but I live in the Northeast and my garage gets below 32 at times. If I drained the radiator and overflow tank at the end of the season would I still be at risk for freeze damage from any remaining water in the block??
If you don't drain the block you are risking busting the block. I would put anti-freeze in it for winter storage, the cost of a couple of gallons of anti-freeze is nothing compared to possible damage if there is enough water hanging up some where to cause damage.
 
If you don't drain the block you are risking busting the block. I would put anti-freeze in it for winter storage, the cost of a couple of gallons of anti-freeze is nothing compared to possible damage if there is enough water hanging up some where to cause damage.
Sounds like the best option
 

Mad Hatter

Gotta go Faster
5,359
4,390
Santiago, Chile
very true, I was thinking of track only. But if you are going below zero, it would be wise to have some antifreeze in the car!!!
 
86
136
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
West
I don't believe that there would be any danger of damaging the block if the system was drained and the cap the degassing tank left loose and the draincock were left open. Any remaining water in the engine could freeze but would have plenty of room to expand as it does, so it could not damage the block.

The question that needs to be answered is whether it is worth the effort? Maybe so if the tracks that you run on only allow water. If coolant is allowed, then using a dilution rate that provides the freeze protection that would be required for your location would make sense to me. It would also provide the corrosion protection for the system, that you will have none of while running straight water.
 
I don't believe that there would be any danger of damaging the block if the system was drained and the cap the degassing tank left loose and the draincock were left open. Any remaining water in the engine could freeze but would have plenty of room to expand as it does, so it could not damage the block.

The question that needs to be answered is whether it is worth the effort? Maybe so if the tracks that you run on only allow water. If coolant is allowed, then using a dilution rate that provides the freeze protection that would be required for your location would make sense to me. It would also provide the corrosion protection for the system, that you will have none of while running straight water.
My car is only used on-track so my primary focus is keeping water temps as cool as possible. I don't want to say I don't care about corrosion potential since I just invested a chunk of money on a 3-pass radiator. I felt that the small amount of water left in the block during the winter might not be an issue. I never considered corrosion. I have never had an issue with coolant at tracks I have run so far in the NE so that's not an issue. I guess what I really need to know is how much of an impact will a bit of coolant have on temps vs straight H2O and water wetter? I have never monitored my water temp so I don't know how high it has gotten but will have a gauge this year.
 
899
556
I am in north Delaware. I put in anti-freeze for the winter and then flush multiple times with distilled water in the spring. Unfortunately, you only get 1/3 - 1/2 of the coolant out when you drain the radiator. The last fill is with distilled water and two bottles of water wetter (I use two because it also provides corrosion protection and pump lubrication). I have also been to VIR in the late fall where the temps where below freezing overnight and early morning.
 
1,294
1,300
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
5-10 Years
Lenoir City TN
I am in north Delaware. I put in anti-freeze for the winter and then flush multiple times with distilled water in the spring. Unfortunately, you only get 1/3 - 1/2 of the coolant out when you drain the radiator. The last fill is with distilled water and two bottles of water wetter (I use two because it also provides corrosion protection and pump lubrication). I have also been to VIR in the late fall where the temps where below freezing overnight and early morning.
You can use an airlift to place a vacuum on the system which will draw more of the coolant out of the block than just draining the radiator. It cuts down on some of the flushing.
 
899
556
Just curious, what track doesn't allow antifreeze/glycol coolants? I know the reason behind it but for track days seems a bit overtop Imo

Until you or someone else has a hose burst, overheat and purge coolant on the track, or there is an accident that puts coolant all over the track. When you put your car into a wall because of one of these, you might reconsider. If your lower radiator hose bursts or gets damaged, it will spray coolant onto your front left.....
 
141
252
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
3-5 Years
Central Florida
Until you or someone else has a hose burst, overheat and purge coolant on the track, or there is an accident that puts coolant all over the track. When you put your car into a wall because of one of these, you might reconsider. If your lower radiator hose bursts or gets damaged, it will spray coolant onto your front left.....
Like I said, I’m just curious which tracks. My local tracks (Daytona, Sebring, FIRM) don’t enforce this rule for HPDE
I’ve done most of my track days in Europe & the UK so learning all about tracking a car in the US
 
6,676
8,786
No competition organizations ( IMSA, SCCA ,NASA,, or any short tracks) allow antifreeze on the racing surface in competition vehicles that I'm aware of. For HPDE or autocross they might make exceptions.
Antifreeze is worse than ice , and doesn't clean up very well.
 

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