A car overheating can happen to anyone, even if your car is new and in good shape. It’s more likely to happen in hot weather, and the older the vehicle the more often you can experience overheating issues with your engine. You don’t want to wait for this to happen to you in a blazing parking lot before figuring out how to respond. Learn today what you can do if your car overheats!
- Stock Your Car. If you live in a hot area, you should always keep a bottle of coolant in your car for just such purposes. If you don’t have one, you can walk to or call a local Auto shop for assistance. In addition to coolant, you should keep a gallon of water in your car, which will work in lieu of coolant and also keep you from dehydration if you end up stranded.
- Watch The Gauge. Make it a point to keep an eye on your temperature gauge. If it appears to be rising into the red, turn off your AC unit. It makes your engine work harder, which can cause overheating. If that doesn’t work, you may actually need to turn on your heater to alleviate some of the extra heat from the engine.
- Pull Over. If nothing is working, pull over and turn the car off. You’ll need about 30 minutes for the engine to cool. Pop the hood if you can from inside the cab, but don’t touch the fiery hood if you can’t.
- Top Off Fluids. Add coolant and water to your radiator in a 50/50 mix. If you only have water that will work - but only temporarily. Be sure you’re not adding in cold fluids to a hot engine, because that can cause serious damage.
- Drive To A Professional. Overheating usually signals something wrong, so take it to an auto body shop as soon as you can. You could have a crack that is leaking radiator fluid. If your coolant tank is still full, you may have an electrical or mechanical issue like a broken fan belt, water pump issue, or faulty thermostat. All of these should be fixed quickly by a professional to keep your car running in peak condition.