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Was speaking recently with another owner who shared he had treated his stainless steel coolant pipes with inside/outside ceramic coating.
We had been talking about the coolant pipes radiant heat that tends to warm the cabin.
I initially thought this was a pretty good idea but with more thinking I am finding there are two sides to coating the pipes.
On one side, the inside/outside coating will serve to reduce the outside temperature of the coolant pipes, just as occurs with ceramic coated exhaust headers. Those cooler pipes …should… result in a cooler cabin.
But then I realized the heat blocked from radiating off the coolant pipes is heat that remains in the coolant, unlike in an exhaust system where the heat has a point of exit.
So in theory, coated coolant pipes will provide a cooler cabin at the expense of increasing the coolant temperature.
Open to everyone’s thoughts and opinions on whether the increased coolant temperature has the potential to be a problem.
For the sake of this discussion, let’s assume the cooling system is a fully functional, upgraded aftermarket system capable of 200° idling on a 105° summer day

Sent from me using a magic, handheld electronic gizmo.
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Ceramic coating on headers tends to keep the heat inside the tubes a bit better than uncoated tubes, but it does not reduce the outside tube temperature very much. The product is good at keeping header tubes from rusting, which is more of what it was designed to do.  I know some people claim that you can put your hand on a ceramic coated header tube with the engine running and it won't burn you. Before you try that I suggest that you get a laser pointed heat gun and point it at the one of the tubes. The temperature reduction isn't that great, which would be about the same as coating the coolant tube pipes. Considering the amount of room under a Pantera where the coolant pipes go, there isn't much that can be done to insulate or shield the pipes. In my opinion if you want to reduce your cabin temperature, spend your time and money and improve your air conditioning system efficiency. I moved my air conditioner condenser to the front of the car and it was the best money that I ever spent. Of course if you already have engine cooling issues, then a front mounted condenser will only make it worse. My car is Arizona abused and summer tested and the modification worked for me.

@davidnunn posted:


Stainless steel isn't a very good conductor of heat, so I don't think ceramic coating really hurts heat dissipation very much. Now, if the tubes were aluminum . . .

I'd have to agree with David.  I don't think it will make a measurable difference in coolant/engine temperature.

1. The coolant tubes do not serve to reduce coolant temperature.  They merely transport the hot coolant to the heat exchanger (radiator is the exit point for heat in the coolant).

2. As David pointed out, stainless is a lousy conductor of heat, so probably no difference in coolant temps from passing through the tubes.  I put stainless headers on my Mustang and find that an hour after shut down they're still too hot to work on the engine.  On my Pantera with ceramic coated headers I can comfortably work on the engine around the headers about 20-30 minutes after shut down.

I certainly agree that coolant tubes are not …designed… to reduce coolant temperature. But since that radiated heat is heat that is no longer contained in the coolant, the coolant tubes are indirectly reducing the coolant temperature.  

Like others, especially with stainless tubing, I don’t think the retention of that radiated heat, seen after ceramic coating the pipes, will make a noticeable increase in coolant temperature.

But I do think reducing that radiated heat will, to at least …some… extent, reduce cabin temperature.

mostly all theory and conjecture, hard to empirically prove one way or the other, but I am leaning towards coating my stainless pipes.


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