What To Do if Your Car Overheats?


Cars have advanced over time and newer vehicles typically have cooling systems that are sophisticated enough to pick up high temperatures and engage the fans to keep your engine the right temperature despite the weather. However, regardless of the year of your car, overheating is still a possibility. That is why it is important to be prepared and know what to do if you find yourself in said situation.

Why is my car overheating?

There are various contributing factors that can cause a car to overheat. Leaks as well, as typical wear and tear, can cause an engine to overheat. Various driving conditions can also contribute to a cooling system failure, such as stop and go traffic on a very hot summer day here in Texas. Although, regardless of the reasons behind your engine overheating, the most important thing is how you react and handle the situation, as safety comes first.

To prevent this problem from happening your best bet is to make sure you are taking your car in regularly here in McKinney for an engine service. Keeping the various parts of your car in check and in proper functioning order will usually prevent such things from happening.

What should I do if I sense my car is overheating?

As a starter, you should always make sure you have coolant and a jug of water on hand. This will likely be a solution if your car is overheating. Take note that if you must top off the coolant or water while the engine is still a bit warm, you should do so while the car is still running and in neutral or park (of course with your brake on if there is no one else to sit in the driver’s seat).

#1 If you see that your temperature gauge is going up into the red zone or your car signals you that the temperature of your engine is too high, you should immediately turn off your air conditioner. Reason being that, your AC draws a lot of energy from your engine and turning it off will decrease your engine’s strain.

#2 If you notice that the problem is not getting any better, you should turn on your heater at full blast. This may seem to contradict and very undesirable on a hot summer day, but this enables some heat to transfer away from the engine and may save it from more permanent damage.

#3 If nothing is getting better still, you should pull over as soon as you can. Turn off your engine and pop your hood. Make sure to pop your hood from your driver’s seat and not by hand, at least until the engine has had a chance to cool down a bit. Usually, it takes about 30 minutes or more for the engine to cool down to the necessary point. Your next step may need to be calling a tow truck to bring your car to the experts here at Nortex Lube & Tune.

#4 Once your engine has had a chance to cool off you can proceed to check the coolant tank. If it is empty it is possible that your car has suffered a leak. If you look under your car and notice a puddle or dripping then it is likely the problem is, in fact, a leak. To top off you can use either coolant or water but remember that the water will only last you so long.

As for how to top off your radiator tank, you should carefully open up the radiator cap by placing a cloth over it firstly to protect your hand, and then tilt it away from you as it opens. You may then proceed to pour in the coolant or water. Remember, as mentioned above, to never pour cold water into an engine that is still hot as this can cause the engine to crack due to the sudden change in temperature.

If you have any more questions or would like to schedule a consultation don’t hesitate to contact us today. Remember the importance of regularly bringing your car in for a service to ensure these types of situations don’t happen to you. Here at Nortex Lube & Tune your satisfaction and safety are our top priorities. Call us or come by today.


Car Tips