Yes, it is best to use distilled water and the anti-freeze has to be replaced before it gets too cold.!
No, color is only the preference of the manufacturer.
That is not good, at all. That could be a blown head gasket, or even a crack in your engine somewhere not visible. The only way to tell is to tear your engine down and find the problem. It would just be best to take it to a certified mechanic. To be sure it is coolant and oil, does your exhaust smoke come out Light Blue?
so that its up to temperature quicker and therefore can activate drs
If you only have water in your cooling system you will eventually get rust from the engine block. (bottom half of the motor) Put some antifreeze in it and change it every couple of years as it eventually becomes acidic and can damage alloy parts. You can do a litmus paper test on the coolant every service to check.
Check the coolant level in your reservoir tank when the engine is cold. If the coolant level is below MIN add coolant up to the MAX level, Some older vehicles may not have a reservoir tank, so check the level in the Radiator. BUT only when cold. Remove the Radiator Cap and if necessary fill to the desired level. If the coolant level is low, it may also be necessary to check the anti freeze content, purchase an anti freeze tester and follow the instructions. Once again, the engine should be cold to avoid scalding.
The cooling system on you car's engine is pressurized to reduce the evaporation temperature of the fluid, to make the system more efficient. If you open the radiator cap when the engine is hot, the fluid sprays out as the pressure equalizes. This can burn the s##t out of you, seriously. It's dangerous and wasteful of the coolant fluid. WAIT, an hour or so, to let the engine and readiator cool off, before taking off the cap. Then you can add water/coolant mixture. DO NOT PUT ONLY WATER into the system! Use a mixture of coolant and water, or straight coolant from the bottle.
the light is triggered by a switch inside the overflow bottle, If the coolant level is low when the engine is cold, it will trigger the switch to turn on the light until the cooant warms up and expands. The hot water expands and flows through the radiator cap and into the overflow bottle and shuts the light off. Then once the engine is shut off and cools down, the coolant will flow back into the engine again and empty the overflow bottle. so if the light is on, you need to fill the overflow bottle to the "cold" mark.
First, if you only look after it has disappeared, there is no coolant left to be leaking Second, coolant will often leak only under pressure, when it expands from being hot. This often happens when the car is moving, so cannot be observed, or escapes as steam. These leaks can be from small cracks in hoses, often under the clips; from pinholes in the radiator body; from under the pressure cap if the seal is badly worn. If some coolant is already missing, the remainder will heat up faster, setting up a viscious cylcle. In vehicles with an overflow bottle, overheated water goes to the bottle, to be sucked back later by the reduced pressure as the water cools again. In extreme overheating (boiling) the coolant can overflow the bottle, so less is available for sucking back later. Also if the hose to the bottle is cracked or loose, the reduced pressure will suck in air instead of water from the bottle. This leads to a situation where the radiator is quite low (so susceptible to fast overheating) while the overflow bottle contains water, so the user thinks there is enough water and never refills it. Coolant can also leak into the engine block, but this will not "keep" happening, as quite a small amount will cause the engine to stop functioning.
On a 1996 Mercury Sable : The thread on cap on the engine coolant reservoir is the pressure cap / radiator cap
A blown head gasket is about the only way to get water into the oil, it should be coolant though. If you are running only water in your radiator you have probably been experiencing some leakage or overheating issues and replaced the coolant with water as an emergency measure. ( plain water will do damage to your aluminum engine parts )
why does the coolant only leak when engine is off on my 1999 grand am?
Most vehicles have a coolant reservoir (a clear plastic tub) with a phrase "engine coolant only" printed on the cap. This is where you should add engine coolant.
Yes, you can. But if you leave in cold area you will have to replace with proper coolant closer to winter. Otherwise it will damage not only your radiator but also the engine.
Only in an emergency. Antifreeze/coolant provides anti-rust agents, water pump lubricants, lowers the freezing point, and raises the boiling point.
Engine coolant contains certain chemical properties that water does not. Coolant is used in cars, busses, trucks, and other vehicles, and it is never recommended to use water unless it is only a short-term fix until you can get more coolant. The main difference is freezing point. If you use water as coolant in the winter, it will likely freeze and crack your engine block. In the heat, water boils much faster and produces more heat.
Im guessing you mean engine coolant. Do not add water, only engine coolant unless you want to ruin your car. There should be a small tank to add water near the air filter place, or just follow the hose from the radiator the cap that says to not open when engine is hot.
Unless someone has put oil in the water bottle in error, there is an internal failure in the engine. The most common (but not the only) cause is that the head-gasket has failed.