Stangger - are you saying that ratings don't mean a thing - just buy any old ELC coolant? When you see ratings, they indicate a certain minimum quality which is a good thing. Now, I agree - Just because the rating isn't there doesn't mean that the quality isn't there, but why risk it? EC-1 was picked as a common standard so that the consumers (us) could have some degree of assurance that the product is going to work. With all the DexCool problems, and now the concerns over the Gold gelling, I sure wouldn't be advocating that any and all ELC coolants are good.
That being said, I certainly don't know what ALL of the ELC coolant choices are - maybe they all carry the EC-1 rating (who knows). Maybe there is a better standard (rating) to be looking for (also who knows). Also, no doubt that there are ratings that indicate a better quality product for diesel applications, but since the EC-1 rating is SUCH a common one, if an ELC coolant didn't carry it, I don't think I would want to consider it.
Point in case -
I have a bottle of Prestone antiofreeze in the garage. It says it is "for any make and model" and "can be added to any color antifreeze". Also on the label it states "Extended Life Coolant". BTW - I am quoting the label, and not advocating choosing coolants by color.
No where on the labeling does it give ANY rating - there are no statements regarding conformance to certain specifications - at all.
A person would be crazy to use that coolant in there diesel truck.
I am not aying that the ratings do not matter.
What I am saying is EC-1 is a rating developed by Caterpillar. It is tested and spec'ed ONLY by Caterpillar. Every engine manufacturer has their own coolant spec. If I develop a coolant, I want it to have as many ratings as possible, because if it doesn't I limit my customer base. CAT's EC-1 rating is developed by CAT engineers, specificlaly for CAT product.
Take a look at this brochure:
Now this is a link to a fleetguard sales brochure which is a Cummins product, I use fleetguard because I get it for employee cost. I do not submit that it is a superior choice only that it is an acceptable choice. The reason I provide this link look at the riht side of the various products, you will see a dozen specifications. Each manufacturer publishes their own spec.
It is a short term money maker. Engine company X develops a coolant product and then says in order to meet our warranty standad your coolant must be subjected to X hours of testin and meet Y parameters. Of course that engine company already has the coolant ready for you to buy, Now other manufacturers scamble to meet the new spec and will in time, but in the interim (often 6-18 months) a company has an exclusive coolant (or lubricant) that they can charge what they want for. This makes high margin business.
Personally I want my coolant to meet all these standards. If it was JUST CAT EC-1, I'd probably stay away. My contention was more with his phrase that CAT's standard is the most stringent and the gold standard by which all is measured.
5 years ago 88+% of all new OTR trucks built had either CAT or CUMMINS engines in them. So if you met the CAT and CUMMINS standard you could play in the largest market share, on highway trucks. CAT stepped out of that business 4 years ago. Cummins today is the only independent engine producer for OTR tractors. Every other engine manufacturer eithe produces their own truck or owns part share in a truck company. This isn't a good or bad thing just informational.
The next piece of coolant is the controversy around OAT technology...but that is a thread unto itself.
I've ran OAT compleat and regular compleat without issue in my 6.0, but that is a sample size of 1, so it is statistically insignificant.
To be honest, if you follow their service scheudle and advice the ford complete gold is perfectly acceptable. But not many follow that guideline, and it is way to tight of a tolerance to failure for my preference.