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I have a 2008 4Runner SR5 V6. I need to flush my cooling system. Does anyone know if I am supposed to use the red or pink coolant? Also, about how much do I need (I'm trying to decide if I need to order two containers)? I found some Pentofrost pink coolant on Amazon. Can I use that or is it imperative I use Toyota-brand coolant?

Answers from the Automotive Experts

Brandy Schaffels, Editor at, Inc.

You can download owner's manuals for your 2008 Toyota 4Runner at this Toyota link: According to the manual, “Toyota Super Long Life Coolant” is used in your Toyota vehicle at factory fill. In order to avoid technical problems, only use “Toyota Super Long Life Coolant” or similar high quality ethylene glycol based non−silicate, non−amine, non−nitrite, and non−borate coolant with long−life hybrid organic acid technology. (Coolant with long−life hybrid organic acid technology is a combination of low phosphates and organic acids.) Do not use plain water alone. Please contact your Toyota dealer for further details. While you MAY be able to use a different coolant, I would suggest that you stick with what your manual suggests. There is much discussion on the topic here: You can always confirm your choice with your dealership, or for additional assistance, please find an AskPatty Certified Repair Shop at and they can help you diagnose coolant and perform the flush.

Jessica Howe, Automotive Expert & Coach at


Thank you for writing in. Only use the red coolant, not the pink. Toyota does recommend that you use their specific brand of coolant, because it has a very particular chemical composition. While there are other types and brands that are likely "compatible", its not worth the potential issues caused by different chemicals in the system. The amount of money you would save by purchasing this other coolant won't be worth the issues it may cause further down the line. Stick with Toyota coolant, or at the very least a coolant that claims it is compatible with Toyota cooling systems. Good luck!

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