I did finally just order the restore from ryderfleet after calling about 15 or so local shops to no avail. Ended up with Ford's VC-9 as well since Ryder requires 4 minimum orders on Restore+. Anyways, with as hard as it was for me to get the required flushing chemicals and as hard as it is for others with no alternatives spoken of when asked; I went on a searching quest and came up with what seems to be some acceptable silicate cleaners.
1. Caterpillar 6V4511 & 4C4611--Cooling System Cleaner
2. ACDelco 10-5037/GM 19286424--Heavy duty cooling system cleaner
3. Penray 200264--Oil Purge-Cooling system cleaner
4. Citric acid/Alkaline Cleaner Solution (?Homemade restore?)
5. John Deere TY15979
"Converting to Cat ELC
Itís easy to convert to Cat ELC. If youíve
been using a conventional heavy-duty, lowsilicate
antifreeze/coolant, first clean your
system with Cat Cooling System Cleaner
6V4511 or 4C4611 or a similar commercial
cleaner at the change interval."
--I would say this product is actually a direct replacement for Restore (compared to 6V), as it is the 'quick-flush' version to be used at coolant change over. The last 2 numbers of the p/n may change depending on amount, this is for a 1 gallon container.
--This product is to be added into the cooling system in trucks still being used, claiming that it takes full effect after a couple or more weeks. Which tends to make me think that it could help in cleaning up an oil cooler that is on it's way out, but not quite yet. Or maybe just put it in while your waiting for time to do a complete flush/cooler R&R. Same deal with the p/n.
Cat fluids Page 35-36
"ACDelco Announces New Heavy Duty Cooling System Cleaner
ACDelco announces the availability of a Heavy Duty Cooling System Cleaner safe for removing rust, scale and deposits, including silicate gel, from the cooling system quickly and effectively. This product contains a detergent that removes oil and grease, as well as a corrosion inhibitor to reduce corrosion of engine metals during the cleaning process. The part number is 10-5037, which includes a package of six 16-ounce containers of the new cleaner. Contact your DDG or local ACDelco rep to order."
Pretty straight forward, they now make a cooling system cleaner that will clean out the silicate. Can pick it up at ACDelco or a GM dealer. Fairly new, bulletin just came out in May of this year. It seems to have replaced GM's use of the Prestone Heavy Duty cleaner.
ACDelco bulletin Page 4
Delco to Gm p/n reference
3. Penray Oil Purge
"Penray 200264 Oil Purge Cooling System Cleaner is specially formulated to remove oil, hydraulic and transmission fluid from heavy duty cooling systems. It disperses dropout, and helps remove silicate gel, scale, build-up and other deposits. Requires less flushing than other cleaners Penray Oil Purge will not harm seals and metals."
The way they say it 'helps' remove silicate gel lends me to believe that it may not be as effective as necessary. But could be used if it's all you can find, though, I don't know how available it actually is or where it's stocked.
4. Citric acid/homemade Restore
I first came upon this idea from a thread on this site actually.
Originally Posted by spoonfedblue
....I worked for Roush Industries for about 2 years. In that time, I was heavily involved with the development of the 6.7....I remember doing several cooling system flushes on test mules in the early stages of the 6.7.
Anyway, when we did these flushes (trucks were running G-05, which is Premium Gold) the first step was mixing distilled water with CITRIC ACID powder, in the hopes of dissolving gelled up silicates in the system. After that we flushed with VC-9 and distilled water....the trucks were equipped with flowmeters in the EGR cooler inlet and outlet hoses, and there was a 10%-15% increase in flow just after the citric acid flush. This was all before they switched the trucks to OAT coolant....
I think it was a 12oz cup to 1 gallon of water.....You can buy citric acid powder online, apparently it's used for canning?
So that's that....Now, with the MSDS available on Fleetguard's site all the information they give you on ingredients is potassium hydroxide which is simply an alkaline base used in cleaners. However, with plenty of searching around I bumped into another website that seems to have a more descriptive MSDS for restore. Chemcas Restore MSDS
On the Chemcas site I found that Restore had a 50%(20-40% by wgt) concentration of guess what....Citric acid. Along with 5-30% of sodium hydroxide, which is basically the same thing a KOH just less powerful since sodium is smaller. Both still Alkaline bases, they may have slightly changed the formula over time (not sure which is most current). Guess what else has citric acid......Caterpillar 4C4611: 10-20%....Couldn't find much info on the Penray or ACDelco MSDS or ingredients.
I would say it seems pretty clear that the right solution of Citric Acid does a good job at removing silicate gel. I might suggest adding an alkaline base like KOH or NaOH, just enough to get the Ph of the solution to around 9-11 since that's what Restore has along with some other cleaners.
5. John Deere
For what it's worth, I found some PDF manuals that said Fleedguard's restore and restore+ can be used as an alternative to Deere's TY15979. However, it appears
JD quit making it and just say to use Fleetguard's stuff. Figured maybe someone might still find it on a shelf at a tractor place.
To summarize.............There ARE alternatives.