Failing to keep a close watch on how your car is operating can lead to a number of problems, not the least of which is overheating. Unfortunately, when a vehicle overheats, a lot of damage can occur, leading to costly repair bills. Below are some signs that you should watch for that could indicate that your engine is too hot as well as tips on how to prevent your vehicle from overheating in the future. A little bit of preventative maintenance can go a long way toward protecting your vehicle, minimizing the chances that you will need to make expensive repairs.
The role of your vehicle’s radiator is to keep the engine cool. In order to accomplish that, it uses a mixture of antifreeze and water that is circulated through the engine and radiator. Most experts recommend using a 1:1 ratio of antifreeze to water to get the best results. You should regularly check the coolant level to make sure your engine doesn’t overheat for lack of coolant. There is also a thermostat, rubber hoses and a water pump that is used to keep your engine at the right temperature. If either malfunctions, your car to overheat. In short, there are a few systems to keep your car’s engine running cool, and the most important thing is to make sure you have plenty of coolant.
Mechanical parts like thermostats and water pumps do fail occasionally, but these parts don’t require any maintenance. That’s why we advise to make sure your coolant is topped-up, keeping in mind that water pumps and hoses can leak, but if you are paying attention, these failures don’t have to mean catastrophe for your car.
Watch For Signs Of Overheating
Watch your car closely for signs that the engine is overheating, keeping a watchful eye on the temperature gauge. For instance, a sudden spike in coolant temperature could mean a leak. If this should happen, pull off the road as soon as safely possible and shut off the engine. Call a tow truck to get your car to your mechanic asap to determine the overheating problem..
Oftentimes, engines that are overheating will also give off some steam and may emit a strong odor. Another obvious sign of an overheating engine is if the temperature gauge on your dashboard moves towards “Hot,” indicating that the engine is too hot. You may also have problems with hoses bursting or leaking due to age or damage.
There are quite a few different things that can cause an engine to overheat ranging from a faulty thermostat to leaks in the cooling system. Other common causes include broken radiator fans, leaks in the head gasket, a broken water pump, a clog in the radiator, a belt that is loose, a cylinder head that has cracked, or an inadequate amount of antifreeze in the radiator. While there are other causes, these are the most common.
If you suspect that your car is overheating, shut off the engine right away. Contact a repair service in the immediate vicinity to have your vehicle towed to a nearby shop. Avoid the temptation to continue driving your vehicle if you notice that it is overheating. The minute that you see the temperature starting to rise, shut off the engine right away to avoid causing major damage.
Watch Your Temperature Gauge!
As we noted above, one of the best things you can do for your car is to watch the gauges. Pull over ASAP and shut off the engine when you notice a problem. This will help save your engine from permanent damage, as overheating is a serious engine problem. Also, watch for leaks or puddles of antifreeze under your car – a sure sign of trouble to come. Just by paying attention and not driving an overheated car can make a work\ls of difference.