Don’t Let Your Car Overheat

man having trouble with overheating car engine
Your engine has to work hard to generate the power to drive your vehicle, and it also generates a lot of heat in the process. That’s why vehicles come with a cooling system to keep those temperatures from rising too high. However, certain factors can overtax the engine or inhibit the cooling system from doing its job, which can quickly lead to engine overheating. When that happens, it’s important to identify the problem and act quickly, so remember these tips suggested by Nationwide to protect your engine from overheating damage.

Why Do Cars Overheat?

With all the parts and components tied to the engine and cooling system, there’s a number of things that could go wrong and lead to overheating issues. It’s typically more complicated than a matter of hot weather, as cold weather can actually freeze your car’s coolant and stop the flow in the winter. The coolant system could also experience a blockage, spring a leak, or exhibit a host of other malfunctions with its lines and pumps.

Trouble with the cooling fan could lead to overheating as well, and even the temperature gauge could fail to properly regulate the flow of coolant through your engine. There’s a multitude of reasons to get your vehicle’s oil changed on a regular basis, and in this case, skipping your oil change can lead to low levels of engine oil, which means you won’t have enough oil to remove excess heat.

Warning Signs

When your engine starts to overheat, it should give off some telltale indicators that something’s wrong. You’ll likely see the temperature gauge on your dashboard start to climb into the high zone, and you might also notice a strangely sweet scent or burning smell coming from your car. You should also look out for steam coming from under your hood.

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What to Do If Your Engine Overheats

If your car starts to overheat, you shouldn’t keep driving. Pull over as soon as you can safely do so, then shut off the engine. Give your car time to cool down (at least 10 minutes), and open the hood to let the heat out faster. Without turning on the engine, turn your key to the first position, which will turn on the accessories. This should allow you to check gauges to see if the temperature and fluid levels are normal. To stay safe, call for roadside assistance and let a professional mechanic like the ones at Amigo Toyota address the source of your overheating issue.

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