Uncovering The Mysteries Behind Engine Overheating

Engine overheating can lead to a dangerous road situation and an expensive fix. As an engine overheats, the components can slowly warp and crack while becoming molded and battered on the bumps, rises and falls of the road. The issue may not be as easy as putting in some new coolant, so if you're at a loss for your heat problems under the hood, consider a few overheating engine troubleshooting techniques.

Coolant Is The First Basic Check

Coolant and antifreeze have become a single mixture solution for many vehicles. The most common reason for an overheating vehicle is a lack of coolant, but the issue becomes complicated once you look deeper.

At the most basic level, some people simply forget to add coolant in the hottest days of the summer or antifreeze in the winter. Hot days can be easily and quickly solved by adding coolant, but a frozen day may require the car to sit on idle while thawing out frozen water from the radiator.

If the vehicle is old or has dealt with many years of improper heating or cooling, parts of the liquid system may crack. The radiator, which houses vehicle liquids and the water pump responsible for water distribution can leak coolant. You may need to replace the parts at an auto repair shop, but mechanics may be able to weld or otherwise seal the cracks if small enough.

If there is no crack, you may need to flush the coolant. As coolant and water dries up, the ingredients, impurities and debris can turn into a paste. The paste may clog up your coolant path, restricting access to cooler water transfer and leading to a hot engine. Visit an auto repair shop to have it flushed.

Sensor And Computer Problems

Most vehicles have a thermostat, which is usually in the water path. The thermostat opens and closes at different levels depending on water level to allow water flow. If the engine is overheating, more water is allowed. If the engine is at an acceptable temperature, the water flow is minimal.

Thermostats can become clogged, stuck or damaged. If the water flow is blocked, the engine will eventually overheat in hotter weather. If the thermostat is always open, the water will be at a higher temperature due to the constant cycling through a hot engine.

Thermostats can thankfully be replaced relatively cheaply. Unfortunately, if your thermostat relies on the vehicle's computer, you may need to visit an auto repair shop for diagnostic tests or even a replacement. Don't wait until your vehicle breaks down; take an overheating engine problem to an auto repair shop like Denville Transmission as soon as possible.