What to Do When Your Car Overheats

There’re a few things in life that are certain—death, taxes, and your car will experience some form of mechanical turmoil at some point. While some issues can be prevented with routine maintenance, some are more unexpected than others. One of these is overheating. While today’s engines are equipped with advanced cooling systems that are designed to prevent the problem from happening, it still does. 

How Can I Tell If My Engine Is Overheating? 

The most frequent sign of an overheating engine is steam hissing from underneath the hood. Aside from this, the dial on the engine temperature gauge might be maxing out at “H”. Aside from the visual signs of an overheating engine, you might smell a strange odor coming out from the front of your car. 

What Do I Do If My Engine is Overheating? 

If Your engine starts to overheat, there are a few steps you should immediately take. 

Turn Your Heater On – Doing this will transfer the heat from your engine block to the interior of the passenger compartment. This won’t solve the problem, but it will help alleviate some of the stress. 

Pull Your Car Off the Road – No matter where you might be heading to, it’s best to pull off the road and stop the engine. If you have roadside assistance such as AAA, give them a call and have them tow you to a service station. 

Don’t Open Your Hood Too Soon- While you might feel tempted to pop the hood and pour some coolant in the engine, it’s best to wait 15-20 minutes. If your engine has overheated, it’s more than likely that the coolant has risen to temperatures of 200 degrees. 

Add Coolant to The Radiator- After you’ve given the engine time to cool down, add coolant to the radiator. (It’s always best to keep water & antifreeze in your trunk for just such an occasion.) After pouring the coolant in, start your engine. If you notice the temperature gauge drop slightly, then it’s safe to proceed to a service station.  But use caution, coolant won’t fix the entire problem. 

Take Your Car to Be Serviced by a Mechanic- An overheating engine can be an indication of a much larger problem. Today’s cars are more complex than ever, and a mechanic will be able to assess the issue properly. 

If you live in the Sarasota area, then you already know all about what the heat brings—good and bad. For the hottest deals in the area, come down to Scotti’s Auto Sales. For directions, inventory and services visit https://www.scottisautosales.com/. You’ll be glad you did.