Interesting two-minute tech:
I do not believe that a radiator can be affected by electrolysis. I have no faith in the report. I had purchased a new radiator and within a few months it had failed. It had developed a leak in the center of the core the warranty time had expired and I purchased a second radiator it also failed with leaking around the outer core. The culprit was electrolysis as determined by the radiator shop and the supplier. I am very conversant with electrolysis and it is not possible for a radiator to be affected by electrolysis. The debate escalated somewhat and the supplier had a multi page document justifying their determination, the document was completely bogus. They offered several examples of electrolysis however offered no cures and offered hyped up pep talks to the staff as to what a good job you are doing inspite of the all the failures. After further discussions and a week of deliberation they agreed that my problem was not electrolysis and replaced the radiator. The shop that sold the radiator told me a story of a customer that returned 6 - 8 times to have his radiator replaced because of a severe electrolysis problem my response was an overwhelming bravo sierra. On the box there is a large red CAUTION that you must use distilled water or the warrenty will be void. They offer an additional solution you can buy our waterless coolant (which is glycol) and is an electrical conductor anyways. I have to stop here I am getting a bit emotional.
I wonder if new lead free solder could have any thing to do with it?
The test only shows electrolysis taking place in the entire cooling system. The radiator is just a pace to test for it. I saw an IH 786 with less than a 1000 hours on it that had pin holes in one of the sleeves. The antifreeze was bright green and floated all the balls on the tester but it was producing .9 volts. The damage is occurring above .3 and can be stopped by changing antifreeze with fresh. Watch an EDM machine cutting something. That's what takes place when you have bad antifreeze. The damage won't so much be the radiator, think more expensive.
In order for a radiator in an automobile to be affected by electrolysis, the entire vehicle would have to become a cathode (-) and a like vehicle or metal object would have to be the anode (+). A medium would have to be present to (usually moisture) to create a means for the ions to flow or circulate from the cathode to the anode creating hydrogen and oxygen gas. This whole process is nearly impossible to create.
As an example: there were two float equipped airplanes parked on a very damp grass area on the ground stored for the winter months. After the storage season had terminated it was found that the aluminum floats on one airplane were severely corroded and the other airplane floats were un- damaged. After a thorough investigation it was determined that the airplane with the damaged floats became the cathode (-) and the un-damaged airplane became the anode (+). It was further determined that the undamaged airplane had a faulty electrical component (electric wind-up clock) and therefore created the process of anode to cathode ion circulation. In this case one airplane became the anode and the other became the cathode and the electrolyte medium was the damp grass. The floats were attacked because they were closest metal component to the flowing electrons. In an automobile this would be almost impossible to occur. I filled an aluminum pot with tap water (this would therefore represent the radiator) and achieved a reading of .15 volts. There is no battery involved. By adding a light sprinkle of salt the reading elevated to .34 volts. Any particulate in the water (coolant) will assist the efficiency of the ion flow, this does not mean electrolysis is occurring and eating up your radiator. The people creating these reports usually have a vested interest or something to sell. I have a 26 T that I have owned for 55 years I think I am the third owner and the radiator is original and has had no extra care or maintenance and it is as good as new in appearance and efficiency. Radiators will take a lot of abuse and not fail. Failures are usually related to manufacturing faults, chaffing, freezing and mechanical damage and general road hazard debris. If there is any hint of a manufacturer fault, the electrolysis theory will surface. I do not believe a radiator can be attacked by electrolysis it is virtually impossible. I will however stand corrected if somebody can unequivocably prove otherwise.
".... a faulty electrical component (electric wind-up clock)....
How does that work????
You can find a lot of bogus crap on the internet if you look hard enough. Use a reasonable mix of 50/50 ethylene glycol and water in your cooling system. You won't have any problems related to corrosion or electrolysis.
Chad. - in a word NO.
Most lead free solder is Tin Silver Copper instead of Tin-Lead.
The main difference other than no lead is the melting point.
Tin lead = 183C
Tin-silver-copper = 217 C
David and Royce
This has nothing to do with radiator damage. It is only a test to ensure anti freeze has not become acidic. If it in fact does become acidic, it allows transfer of electrons from one part to another.
The late Carl Davis (model T guy) worked on farm equipment all his life. He had nothing to sell me as he explained why he was overhauling a 8 year old tractor with less than 1000 hours. He showed me the sleeves that had pin holes in them. The 8 year old antifreeze was bright green and floated all 5 balls saying it was good to -40. I promise the man that had to overhaul the engine would likely to this day remember what happens when it becomes acidic. I also bet he changes his antifreeze at two years.
If you wind the clock to fast it will produce static electricity that can cause a spark.
If the spark is near gasoline it could cause an explosion
If the explosion is in a beer can it could fly across the room and hit a light switch.
If the light switch is connected to a light (imagine that) the light might turn on.
If the light turns on it might startle a cat.
If a cat gets started it might run.
If the cat runs a dog might think it wants to play
If a dog thinks a cat wants to play it might start chasing it
If a dog chases a cat the cat may swat the dog's nose
If a cat swats a dog's nose it might bleed.
If a dogs nose bleeds the blood might get on your new white carpet.
If the blood gets on your new white carpet your wife WILL get mad.
If your wife gets mad you will be in trouble
DON'T touch the damn clock!!!!
Gary is spot on with the warning and unwanted results of problems with IH!! This in farm country has been a known fact for many years!!! Bud in Wheeler,Mi.PS,I actually know of two people that spent several thousand's of dollars because of this problem!! You can make a study of empty beer cans if it will help! Bud.
In the farm world it isn't just IH, John Deere had problems with the 30 series and the 40 series they started putting water filters on them. JD also sells an additive that you can add to the antifreeze to prevent electrolysis. and yes I did put some in my T, figured it couldn't hurt.
Follow the directions on the Prestone or whatever brand of ethylene glycol anti freeze container. You won't have any problems with electrolysis, corrosion, freezing, or anything else.
Three cylinder Ford's as well. Diesel is more susceptible than gas as the sulphur in the fuel if there is any leakage after combustion into the cooling system is sulphuric acid. The exhaust leakage is sulphur dioxide and when mixed with water becomes sulphuric acid.
It is preventable if one heeds the warnings. Watch a YouTube video of an EDM cutter and understand that sour antifreeze will allow this on a slower scale.
This has nothing to do with radiator damage.