What to Know About Overheating in your Car.

4 minutes, 46 seconds Read

By Quick Auto Brain

If your car is a modern, computerized vehicle with sophisticated sensors and warning systems, you might think overheating isn’t a concern. After all, with the temperature gauge on your dashboard sitting comfortably in the middle, it’s unlikely to happen. But when an engine is getting very hot it is not something that should be ignored. One of the most important precautions you can take to prevent overheating in your car is to have an idea about your temperatures and how they should be running. This will help you in case you do begin to notice signs and symptoms of your engine overheating. Here are few signs that indicate that your car might be shutting down because it is overheat.

Your car engine gets hot under the hood. That’s normal. But when it gets warm enough, something weird happens: usually an alarm goes off in your car to alert you that you need to pull over. This is important because overheating can ruin your engine – or even explode it. You should never ignore this alarm and always stop your car as soon as safely possible. Once you’ve pulled over, you should know why your car is overheating. By knowing the reasons for overheating of your car, you can do a better job at preventing it from happening in the future!

Your Cooling System

The overall cooling system of your car keeps a standard operating temperature for the engine by circulating coolant, or antifreeze, through the engine to the radiator, thus pulling heat away from the engine. The fan that blows your radiator causes the radiator to dissipate the heat of the coolant coming from the engine. In simple terms your coolant transfers the heat in the engine to the outside.

What is Overheating?

Engines made today are typically built to be durable, but when heat generated by a vehicle’s motor is well above the normal operating temperature, the devices made to cool this heat distribution may begin to fail, potentially causing permanent damage to not only the engine, but also the gaskets, hoses and seals that are designed to keep the engine running. When there is failure in the cooling system the heat in the engine begins to rise till the engine shuts down


  1. Reasons for overheating

2. Is there a high temperature alarm or warning light on?

3. A new coolant smell; is there a leak or puddle?

4. Engine cooling system pressure test.

5. The radiator cap.  In some models, the radiator cap contains pressure relief valves and safety features that allow excess pressure to escape instead of damaging parts of the cooling system. The radiator cap must be removed, cleaned and inspected periodically. If it is beyond repair, a new one must be installed.

6. The cooling fan. A malfunctioning fan can cause the engine to overheat at highway speeds because the mechanical belt-driven fan may not turn fast enough when your vehicle reaches highway speeds.

7. The water pump. Some water pumps are driven by gears, while others utilize serpentine belts. In either case, improper lubrication can cause premature failure of the water pump bearings and damage to the internal components of the water pump itself. Water pumps are mounted on the engine and take normal wear and tear while the engine is running — especially if the belt or tensioner has been loose in the past or needs replacement now.

8. Is overheating happening only when idling or traveling at

There are a variety of reasons that a vehicle can overheat, the five major reasons are listed below.

A Malfunctioning Thermostat.

The thermostat job is to keep coolant from going into the engine until the engine is warmed up this will allow the vehicle to reach operating temperature faster. If the thermostat has a problem it can shut up and not allow the coolant to flow into the engine adequately.

Water Pump.

Damaged Water Pump

The water pump is what pumps the coolant through the engine, where the coolant absorbs the heat in the engine and sends it to the radiator to dissipate the heat. A faulty pump may either stop the flow of coolant or reduce the flow which will increase the heat of the engine.

Low Coolant

If every component in your cooling system works but there is no coolant or inadequate coolant the system will have no medium to transfer heat hereby causing the engine to store up heat and begin to overheat.

Bad or Broken Hoses

The hoses are what move the coolant through the engine, it goes between the engine and the radiator. When there is a damaged, loose, cracked or clogged hose this will cause the coolant to leak and cause pressure in the cooling system.

Broken Hose

Damaged Radiator

The radiator is where the coolant goes to get its cooling back, so if the radiator fan is damaged by burning out or physical damage on the radiator itself. The coolant will stay hot, and returned to the engine hot this will cause the engine to heat up and overheat. It is advisable to replace the fan or the radiator if this conditions are noticed.


This is why you should periodically check your vehicle to ensure that the temperature gauge is functioning properly and that all hoses, seals and gaskets are in good working order. Even vehicles or trucks with a good cooling system can experience problems, so be sure to look your entire vehicle over every year. Spending the time and money to do this now will save you time, money and headaches while avoiding an overheating condition that may occur later. Check out further explanation on overheating by Auto repair guy https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GglmDo6-78

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