This section is from the "Henley's Twentieth Century Formulas Recipes Processes" encyclopedia, by Norman W. Henley and others.
In order to prevent freezing of the jacket water, when the engine is not in operation in cold weather, solutions are used, notably of glycerine and of calcium chloride (CaCl2). The proportions for the former solution are equal parts of water and glycerine, by weight; for the latter, approximately 0.5 gallon of water to 8 pounds of CaCl2, or a saturated solution at 60° F. This solution (CaCl2+6H20) is then mixed with equal parts of water, gallon for gallon. Many persons complain that CaCl2 corrodes the metal parts, but this warning need do no more than urge the automobilist to use only the chemically pure salt, carefully avoiding the "chloride of lime" (CaOCl2).
A practical manufacturing chemist of wide experience gives this:
A saturated solution of common salt is one of the best things to use. It does not affect the metal of the engine, as many other salts would, and is easily renewed. It will remain fluid down to 0° F., or a little below.
Equal parts of glycerine and water is also good, and has the advantage that it will not crystallize in the chambers, or evaporate readily. It is the most convenient solution to use on this account, and may repay the increased cost over brine, in the comfort of its use. It needs only the occasional addition of a little water to make it last all winter and leave the machinery clean when it is drawn off. With brine an incrustation of salt as the water evaporates is bound to occur which reduces the efficiency of the solution until it is removed. Water . frequently must be added to keep the original volume, and to hold the salt in solution. A solution of calcium chloride is less troublesome so far as crystallizing is concerned, but is said to have a tendency to corrode the metals.
Mix and filter 4.5 pounds pure calcium chloride and a gallon of warm water and put the solution in the radiator or tank. Replace evaporation with clean water, and leakage with solution. Pure calcium chloride retails at about 8 cents per pound, or can be procured from any wholesale drug store at 5 cents.
A solution for water-jackets on gas engines that will not freeze at any temperature above 20° below zero (F.) may be made by combining 100 parts of water, by weight, with 75 parts of carbonate potash and 50 parts of glycerine. This solution is non-corrosive and will remain perfectly liquid at all temperatures above its congealing point.
As an excellent remedy against the freezing of shop windows, apply a mixture consisting of 55 parts of glycerine dissolved in 1,000 parts of 62 per cent alcohol, containing, to improve the odor, some oil of amber. As soon as the mixture clarifies, it is rubbed over the inner surface of the glass. This treatment, it is claimed, not only prevents the formation of frost, but also stops sweating.
Alcohol, glycerine, and calcium chloride have been recommended for the, protection of acetylene generators from frost. The employment of calcium chloride, which must not be confounded with chloride of lime, appears preferable in all points of view. A solution of 20 parts of calcium chloride in 80 parts of water congeals only at 5° F. above zero. But as this temperature does not generally penetrate the generators, it will answer to use 10 or 15 parts of the chloride for 100 parts of water, which will almost always be sufficient to avoid congelation. Care must be taken not to use sea salt or other alkaline or metallic salts, which deteriorate the metal of the apparatus.