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Discussion Starter #1
Was reading my owner's manual last night and it said don't use "alcohol"...use calcium chloride.

I thought pretty much everyone was getting away from CaCl due to the potential corrosion issues?

I understand the specific gravity of the CaCl solution is killer high, but....per Deere you have to fill the tire pretty full to make sure the wheel stays wet (no air contact to promote that corrosion).

Seems like windshield washer fluid or even a 30% propylene glycol solution would be safer for the wheels and allow you to fill to any level you want?

:dunno:
 

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Was reading my owner's manual last night and it said don't use "alcohol"...use calcium chloride.

I thought pretty much everyone was getting away from CaCl due to the potential corrosion issues?

I understand the specific gravity of the CaCl solution is killer high, but....per Deere you have to fill the tire pretty full to make sure the wheel stays wet (no air contact to promote that corrosion).

Seems like windshield washer fluid or even a 30% propylene glycol solution would be safer for the wheels and allow you to fill to any level you want?

:dunno:
Yeah, the owner's manuals are still pretty much old school when it comes to liquid ballast. My dealer uses windshield washer fluid 90% of the time unless someone specifically asks for Rim Guard (beet juice). I would not use Calcium at this stage of the game.
 

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Both of my large AG tractor ( bought used) came with CaCl filled rears. I wish they had used RimGuard (beet juice).
Given enough time you will have corrosion with CaCl. It's heavy and low cost are the main reasons it's still widely used.
My guess is JD does not recommend alcohol is danger/liability. Hit a broken off "TEE post", puncture a rear tire, and alcohol sprays on your hot engine and you have a fire to deal with.
 

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Im no expert on the tire fluid issue, and thats mostly due to me avoiding filling tires due to the calcium chloride corrosion issues.
Its real, and its bad. There is no way to avoid having air in the tire with the calcium. Its been said that using tubes mitigates the corrosion issue, but it doesnt.
The exact reason is unknown, though its been speculated that some chemicals can leech through the rubber tube, and while I dont know about that, I do know that when checking the tire pressure, which needs to be done once in a while, some of that will escape and get on the wheel. One there, it will eat through the paint or powdercoat and rust the wheel.

Some fluids contain chemicals that can attack the rubber, which wouldnt be good obviously. I cant recall which ones do that.

I also know that you either fill the tire or you dont. There really isnt a half way on that. There is a proper fluid level and then theres everything else.

Others can give you much more specific answers Im sure as to why it should be done that way.
All the variables are why I stick to cast iron for weight.
That and the fact that I need to remove it once in a while, which is impossible to do with fluid filled tires. At least not without a lot of time, effort and maybe mess.
 

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All the variables are why I stick to cast iron for weight.
That and the fact that I need to remove it once in a while, which is impossible to do with fluid filled tires. At least not without a lot of time, effort and maybe mess.
Remove the tire or remove the ballast?
 

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Methanol solution

Both of my large AG tractor ( bought used) came with CaCl filled rears. I wish they had used RimGuard (beet juice).
Given enough time you will have corrosion with CaCl. It's heavy and low cost are the main reasons it's still widely used.
My guess is JD does not recommend alcohol is danger/liability. Hit a broken off "TEE post", puncture a rear tire, and alcohol sprays on your hot engine and you have a fire to deal with.
The product recommended for rear tractor tires is a methanol solution. I was talking with one of the guys at a warehouse where it's stored. They poured some out on concrete one day and tried to light it- said they had a heck of a time getting it to burn. Evidently there's both some water and some retardant in it as well as pure methanol. I won't say it can't burn but evidently it's not as flammable as you might think.

Treefarmer
 

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It's a little more expensive at around $3.00/gal, but I've had very good success with non-toxic RV antifreeze. Just check the label carefully as there are some flammable versions starting to be sold at some stores.
 

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It's a little more expensive at around $3.00/gal, but I've had very good success with non-toxic RV antifreeze. Just check the label carefully as there are some flammable versions starting to be sold at some stores.
When I bought my 2720 the dealer charged $100 to fill both rear tires with washer fluid.
 

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The product recommended for rear tractor tires is a methanol solution. I was talking with one of the guys at a warehouse where it's stored. They poured some out on concrete one day and tried to light it- said they had a heck of a time getting it to burn. Evidently there's both some water and some retardant in it as well as pure methanol. I won't say it can't burn but evidently it's not as flammable as you might think.

Treefarmer
I know your referring to a specific tire fill solution but I just wanted to point out a fact.

Alcohol was mentioned above, the spirit that most people think of when thinking alcohol is ethyl alcohol or ethanol the stuff being made from corn now and added to our gasoline and the key component on alcoholic drinks. The Methanol you mentioned is just another form of alcohol, methyl alcohol. Typically distilled from wood, and commonly know an wood alcohol, it’s the toxic stuff that can cause blindness in large enough doses.

Alcohol’s are many and varied, ethyl and methyl being just two common ones. Without specifics on the type being incorporated into whatever solution that’s being discussed it’s impossible to know it’s potential effects or dangers.
 

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My local Gateway charged $28 to remove and re-fill a front tire on a 150 horse 4WD tractor. Plus the repair. I stuck a antler in the tire and the fluid was like a small water hose spraying all the way back to the shop.

The biggest issue is weight!! But that's the point.. Even though the tire was flat, it's still plenty of liquid and it's heavy..
I took the tire off and trailered it to town.. Once the repair was done, you better have some good help or a fork lift. It ain't no joke folks!! And would hurt you bad if it fell on you!
Depending on the tire size of course.

I haven't noticed and corrosion or paint gone from the rim. I wouldn't be afraid to use it again.

I think the key is getting it done by somebody who knows what they are doing.

Did I say,, HEAVY!!
 

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In field service

My local Gateway charged $28 to remove and re-fill a front tire on a 150 horse 4WD tractor. Plus the repair. I stuck a antler in the tire and the fluid was like a small water hose spraying all the way back to the shop.

The biggest issue is weight!! But that's the point.. Even though the tire was flat, it's still plenty of liquid and it's heavy..
I took the tire off and trailered it to town.. Once the repair was done, you better have some good help or a fork lift. It ain't no joke folks!! And would hurt you bad if it fell on you!
Depending on the tire size of course.

I haven't noticed and corrosion or paint gone from the rim. I wouldn't be afraid to use it again.

I think the key is getting it done by somebody who knows what they are doing.

Did I say,, HEAVY!!
In field service is not always available but when it is, go for it. We have one or two servicing dealers in the area who will come to the field, fix or replace a tire on the tractor and be gone. They have compressor powered fluid pumps to remove and replace ballast liquid and compressor powered clamps to break the bead free from the rim. It's still hard work but actually easier and quicker to change a large tire on the equipment than take the wheel off, haul it to a shop and put it back on the equipment.

Unfortunately, it's not available everywhere but when it is available I'd recommend going for it.

Treefarmer
 

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In field service is not always available but when it is, go for it. We have one or two servicing dealers in the area who will come to the field, fix or replace a tire on the tractor and be gone. They have compressor powered fluid pumps to remove and replace ballast liquid and compressor powered clamps to break the bead free from the rim. It's still hard work but actually easier and quicker to change a large tire on the equipment than take the wheel off, haul it to a shop and put it back on the equipment.

Unfortunately, it's not available everywhere but when it is available I'd recommend going for it.

Treefarmer
Oh yeah,, I know,, service calls cost money too.. This particular time they couldn't come and I had to have it fixed for the next day so I took it to them..
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Alcohol’s are many and varied, ethyl and methyl being just two common ones. Without specifics on the type being incorporated into whatever solution that’s being discussed it’s impossible to know it’s potential effects or dangers.
Yeah, and this is why I put quotes around the word "alcohol" in my original post.

As someone who is pretty familiar with alcohols in general (and also imports about 100 million pounds per year of ethanol, propanol and butanol) I had to shake my head at such a generic and really meaningless statement in the manual.

Some of the alcohols we make are solids at room temperature and have flash points of 400F. And no small amount of iso-tridecyl alcohol is sold for use in......windshield washer fluid! :)
 
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