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From digest.v6.n877 Mon Jul 14 06:24:37 1997
From: Bob Stommel <>
Date: Sun, 13 Jul 1997 11:03:40 -0500
Subject: Fluid, fluid, and more fluids

Here's my two cents to add to the recent posts on antifreeze. I've owned my 78 320 since 1984. In the past thirteen years, I've used whatever phosphate-free antifreeze happened to be available at the time, mixed with distilled water. In 150,000 miles, the water pump has been replaced only once. When I rebuilt the engine at 125,000 miles, the engine block had minimal corrosion in the water passages. Here's the secret: flush the cooling system once a year -- don't wait the two years suggested in the owner's manual. In fact, if you want long life out of your engine, transmission, brakes, etc. the key is to take your car to your mechanic (or better yet, do it yourself) once a year to change coolant, brake fluid, gearbox fluid, and differential fluid. If you're on the track several times a year, change the brake fluid at least twice a year (for my driver school cars, I change the brake fluid in the early spring before the first school and then again in the fall -- about 6 months apart). If you're a certified track junkie, you might want to flush the brake fluid more often.

Spend the extra money on preventive maintenance and drive it forever.

Bob Stommel

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