Total Lubricants is reminding garages about the importance of appropriate engine oil and coolant selection in helping to keep customers’ vehicles on the roads as the cold weather sets in.

The advice follows the bitter cold weather and snow chaos the ‘Beast from the East’ brought to the country earlier this year and recent reports suggesting that the UK could be hit by up to four months of snow this winter.

Engines have to work even harder in winter, and lubricants and coolants play a key role in maintaining the reliability of vehicles.

Cold weather reduces the effectiveness of oil and makes it thicker meaning it does not circulate through the engine as easily as thinner oil, which can lead to damage to the engine components, and even failure to start.

Using the right type of premium quality oil that provides outstanding wear protection is therefore essential to engine health and performance during cold weather. If it is too thick it may prevent the engine from starting and if it is too thin, it won’t provide adequate protection. The ‘W’ on the code on the label stands for ‘winter’ and indicates the oil’s cold weather ability. The lower the number next to the ‘W’, the more effectively it will perform in cold weather. 

The entire TOTAL QUARTZ engine oil range offers excellent engine protection, reduced component wear, enhanced fuel economy and improved performance. It also features Age Resistant Technology (ART) which fights against friction, corrosion and deposits within the engine and therefore reduces potential cold start issues.  

As well as oil, it is also important to check the coolant level and concentration regularly during the winter months to ensure protection at sub-zero temperatures. Coolants are a necessity all-year-round, but the winter brings significant challenges that can affect the performance of the cooling system, making it more difficult to start vehicles on freezing mornings.

The cooling system helps prevent damage caused by freezing, cavitation, corrosion, overheating and the formation of deposits.

Should the cooling system not function correctly, the engine will begin to fail, as could the radiator, water pump, head gasket or engine block. In the worst-case scenario the engine could overheat and seize.

Total Lubricants offers a suite of premium quality and officially approved OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) products for cars and a raft of other vehicles. The range, which is formulated based on Organic Acid Technology (OAT), includes ready-to-use and concentrate types, and many products that provide protection against freezing, even as low as -37°C.

TOTAL GLACELF and COOLELF coolants contain the additives required to protect a full range of different types of vehicles, while providing exceptional performance in freezing temperatures.

The GLACELF SI-OAT is the concentrate which is added to de-mineralised water at different concentrations to give the desired low temperature operation: Freezing point -20°C at 33% and -37°C at 50%. This product is a ‘very-long-life’ antifreeze made of monoethylene glycol, whilst the COOLELF SI-OAT -37°C is already mixed ready for use.

The advantages of OAT are:

  1. Increases heat transfer efficiency.
  2. Extends life of the coolant.
  3. Has superior high temperature aluminium protection.
  4. Extends water pump life by up to 50%.
  5. Offers excellent cavitation protection.
  6. Offers high temperature oxidation stability.
  7. Reduces cooling system scaling and deposits.
  8. Requires less product disposal.
  9. Offers environmentally friendly inhibitors.
  10. Decreased maintenance costs.

Bob Wood, technical engineer at Total Lubricants, said: “Ensuring vehicles start first-time and keeping them running smoothly presents more of a challenge in winter, so, when the temperature starts to drop, it’s worthwhile using appropriate and high-quality lubricants and coolants as this can help keep engines operating in peak condition while protecting vital components.”

To find out more about TOTAL COOLELF and GLACELF and TOTAL QUARTZ call 01977 636304, email or visit