(as appeared in the Nov, 2005 TSR)
By John Wright
As I sit at my computer thinking of the latest weather report and hurricane Wilma heading for south Florida it occurred to me that winter is knocking at our door here in the mid-Atlantic area. I am sure your T-type is safe and secure wherever you have it stored. But had you thought of the possibility of damage that can be happening while it sits there waiting for next season? Of course an oil change is in order as is checking and adjusting the tire air pressure. Topping off the gearbox and differential might be worthwhile too. But what about the coolant? The antifreeze and water mix in the block and radiator often go unattended and can become a pretty nasty solution, all by itself, over time. This tip I bring to you is from an acquaintance in the Morgan world that is a very prolific writer of hints and tips for Morgan sportscars. Fred Sisson’s book “Morgan Driver’s Bedside Reader” is chocked full of all kinds of information that can be transferred right over to our T-Types.
Fred writes that old coolant, working with the dissimilar metals in your car’s cooling system can create a “battery” that can deteriorate the metals in the engine and radiator. The radiator is of a thinner metal and is usually the first to go but it takes time, several years in fact. Fred’s tip is to use a digital voltmeter to check for this electrolysis taking place. Connect the – lead to the radiator. And then dangle the + lead into the coolant. A reading of 0.2 volts dc is good. 0.3 to 0.6 is marginal and any more would require a drain and flush and replacement of the coolant. Last I checked, regular antifreeze is $10-$13 a gallon. It’s not cheap anymore that’s for sure. Also, please dispose of any used coolant properly and safely. Everyone knows it is lethal to anyone or anything that would drink it. Pets and other animals seem to be attracted to its sweet taste.