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Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chandler, Arizona
The best "compromise" for a coolant is definitely a 50/50 of ethylene glycol and water. for a motorcycle it has to be silicate free, the silicates will destroy the water pump mechanical seal. You also need to use distilled water, which you can get at the local Walmart for $.66 a gallon. Water from a faucet contains minerals and acids which will corrode the engine and radiator, and plug everything up. It won't happen overnight, it takes a couple of years, but the results can be disasterous. I have worked on way to many "swamp coolers" that were completely eaten up by the alkali in the water. Corrosion is like cancer, once started, it can only be gotten rid of by removing ALL of it, difficult to do when you can't get to it.
One thing I have had very poor performance from is "engine ice" I tried it because I live in AZ, and it gets HOT here. But what I found was, it takes longer for the engine to warm up, causing unnecessary idling, it runs just as hot as with ethylene glycol once warmed up, but it cools off faster when the engine has been shut off for just a little while, often requiring it to be warmed up again after sitting for just a couple of hours. Never had those issues with ethlylene glycol.
BTW, ethylene glycol is most definitely a coolant. DO NOT run your bike with plain water unless it is an emergency. Water has a MUCH lower boiling point than a 50/50 mix of water and ethylene glycol, and will boil under normal operating conditions. The temperature gauge, which was designed for coolant, will not show that it is overheating, because coolant would be fine at that temp. But plain water will boil, which results in uneven cooling, hot spots, and serious engine damage.
I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.
1997 Vulcan 750, purchased about a week ago
2006 Sportster 1200 Low
2013 Royal Enfield Bullet 500, converted to carb
2001 Yamaha XT225, heavily modified
2004 Honda Rebel 250
1979 Vespa P200E
2002 Vulcan 750 parts bike
1994 Yamaha XT225 parts bike