When driving out on the road, you need to keep a check on several things in your car. Fuel levels, tire pressure and the engine working are some of the more critical aspects. One of the most important signs you need to look out for is ensuring your car is not overheating.
So how can you do this? The good news is- you don’t need to be a car professional or expert to recognize the signs for a well-running car and one that needs attention. However, if you own a car and if you drive it, you do need to learn all the basics.
This article will help you understand when your car is getting too hot and what you can do to prevent it. In addition, we have talked with experts and professionals in the automobile industry to give you some helpful car tips.
Check Your Coolant Line For Leaks
“If your car is consistently overheating, you’ll want to check for a leak in the coolant line. Often, black smoke rising up from under your hood is from a leaking fluid boiling when it comes into contact with the exterior components of your hot engine. If you see smoke rising from under your hood or even seeping through your AC vents, that’s a pretty good indication that you have a leak. Coolant smells very sweet when it burns, so if you’re catching whips of pancake syrup while you drive, there may be a break in your coolant line. An auto shop can apply air pressure to your coolant tank to help find and patch the hole.”
Jake McKenzie, Content Manager Auto Accessories Garage
Park Under a Shade Or Get a Sunshade Cover
“Prevent overheating by parking your car under a shade. You can feel just how hot your car is after you park it under the scorching sun, and I’m sure you do not like that unpleasant feeling. Parking under a shade not only prevents you from feeling the heat inside the car but also, doing so protects your car. You can also prevent the paintwork and the inside area from damage. If you can’t find a shady spot on your destination, get a sunshade cover ready for your car.”
Liam Johnson, CEO, TheHitchStore.com
Check the Radiator Cap and Coolant Levels
“If your car overheats, it quickly destroys essential components of a car’s engine and other parts. Check the radiator cap for damage and do periodic radiator flushing. Check the coolant levels regularly and look underneath the vehicle where it’s normally parked to make sure that it’s not leaking below. The drive belt should be checked for wear and tear as well. If you notice your car is running hot as indicated by the gauge on the dash, turn off the AC to reduce the engine load and pull over as soon as possible. If you continue to drive with it running hot this could cause significant damage that would cost more to repair than the car is worth.”
Joseph Giranda is the Director of Commercial Relations CFR Rinkens
Change Your Car Battery Regularly
“If you don’t remember the last time you changed your battery, you should have a professional check on that for you. If you haven’t changed your battery in a while, this can cause the car to have to use more energy which results in more heat.”
Matt Seaburn, President of Rent-a-Wheel
Coolant, Hoses, Fans and Driving Habits
“The first and most important thing is having coolant. Without a good radiator cap you will retain nothing once the car gets hot. Replace your cap if the seal starts to look different. Second is hoses: Make sure there are no bulges near hose clamps. Hoses actually feel squishy when they get old, when they start feeling thin, replace them before bad things happen. Fans: most cars are equipped with electric fans. Older cars have a fan with a clutch driven by the crankshaft of the motor. If the fan clutch goes bad it can do two things, lockup and make a ton of noise like a jet taking off, or freewheel and cool absolutely nothing. Wiggle your fan, if it has play back and forth it’s time for a new clutch. Coolant level: You have a coolant overflow tank. It needs to be checked and the fluid level maintained. If you see the overflow getting lower each time you check it, you might have a small leak. Sometimes cars get a little head gasket leak and burn water slowly. Either way it needs to be addressed. Coolant has a distinctive smell. As soon as you smell coolant when driving you should stop and determine if it is your car. Driving with no coolant will overheat an engine within minutes and possibly ruin the entire motor. Carry a gallon of water with in the trunk so you to help yourself and others. Driving habits: Driving in the midday sun during a hot summer while towing a trailer up a big grade with your air conditioner on will usually not end up well. Being smart about when you drive and how you drive can eliminate most problems. A well-maintained vehicle eliminates the others.”
Ken Beckstead, Cigarette Pollution Solutions
If, after following all the advice on here, you are still experiencing overheating, you may need a trip to the mechanic to have it professionally checked out. You may need to stop driving, turn off your car, and call for auto repair help. You don’t want your car breaking down on the roadside. The risk of it resulting in even more damage isn’t worth it. Needless to say, car overheating is an area where you simply can’t compromise or ignore.