Overheating Problems


Is Your Vehicle Overheating Giving You Problems?

Your car overheating can be caused by a few different determining factors. Is your car overheating around Plainfield, Naperville, Bolingbrook, IL? Stop by Last Chance Auto Repair in Plainfield, IL will look at it for free.

Is your car overheating? Know what to do if your car overheats? Have you flushed your cooling system lately?

Questions We Answer About Vehicles Overheating


Question: What causes my car to overheat?
Answer: So many choices, hmmmm. There are many different things can make your vehicle overheat. Maybe a bad radiator or even not enough anti-freeze (coolant) in your radiator. You may also need to check the water/anti-freeze (coolant) mixture. Water pumps go bad all the time, especially when it’s cold. Then the one no one wants to hear, well if they have some basic mechanical knowledge and know what I’m talking about, your all mighty head gasket.

Question: Do I need to flush?
Answer: Of course you need to flush, your cooling system, lol. Your vehicle’s cooling system helps protect your engine from overheating situations, which may be the #1 most common cause of breakdown and internal light to catastrophic engine damage plus even failure. A cooling system flush is considered a basic maintenance service that all car owner’s should know about. Coolant is typically a 50-50 mixture of water and antifreeze. The antifreeze (coolant) flows through your car’s radiator, water pump plus engine cooling passages to keep it operating at the proper temperature specification. Low coolant levels, dirty coolant can all lead to an overheating engine, which unless you want to pay big bucks on engine repairs shouldn’t be chanced. Hence the importance of a basic engine coolant flushing service.

Problems That Cause Your Car To Overheat


Maybe your coolant level is low. The coolant in your engine’s cooling system can become low due to evaporation through your overflow reservoir situation. As in hot coolant is recirculated into the reservoir and then a certain amount of steam will be produced. Which hence over time this can lead to lowering coolant levels in the cooling system. In other cases it may also be that the system was not filled properly after the last cooling system repair, service and or maintenance.

A leak in your engine cooling system. So many places to leak where do we start? Top off your coolant lately, maybe you left your radiator cap loose? Your radiator or heater cores become old and car develop pin holes through corrosion that may leak coolant under pressure. Likewise, radiator and heater hoses become weakened by the high pressure that they sustain until the hose ruptures and leaks coolant. Maybe it’s your water pump? Just before the water pump fails, it will often leak coolant from the weep hole on the bottom of your vehicles water pump. Cars have freeze plugs in the engine block that over time may start rotting which will hence start leaking. There are also a few places around the engine where gaskets can leak coolant hence intake manifold, water pump plus thermostat gaskets. Hmmmmm?

Thermostats go bad eventually. When a thermostat fails, it fails to open when required. What happens is your thermostat will act like a plug in the cooling system and it will keep your antifreeze from circulating through the radiator as required. The result is overheating. Changing your thermostat is considered basic maintenance in the automotive maintenance world.

Water pumps fail like clock work. If the water pump does not circulate your vehicles coolant, your car will overheat plain and simple. Water pumps usually are replaced as basic maintenance if you stay on top of your basic maintenance. Signs of a water pump failing can include a high pitched squeeking sound. Or maybe your symptom is the water pump starting to leak fluid from the weep hole at the bottom of the pump. This is a sign that the internal seal is failing. When this sign shows up, get the car fixed quickly because it will continue to only get worse.

Air trapped in your cooling system. Do you have air trapped in your cooling system? This one can sometimes be a little harder to diagnose to the regular Joe. Some cars have a bleeder on the thermostat housing or somewhere close that can be opened to release trapped air in a cooling system typically due to maintenance. If not maintenance typically due to a problem at hand.

Your radiator cooling fan isn’t working. Did your radiator fan quit working which is now causing an overheating issue? Check by starting your car and turning the air conditioner on while the car idles. The cooling fan should come on within a short time of enabling the air conditioner system. If it does not come on, you need to repair it or schedule it accordingly with your local auto repair shop. The repair might be replacing the fan unit. If your lucky maybe just the cooling fan relay went bad. Another possibility may be a blown fuse or and or even other electrical problems.

Your heater core may have become clogged. This problem is more typical on older and higher mileage vehicles. Oxidation, scale, and sludge can build up overtime if your cooling system is not maintained properly which eventually can clog your heater core. It can also happen as a result of adding too much stop leak to your cooling system. Hence a periodic radiator flushing of your cooling system can help, but if neglected long enough you may be headed for a heater core replacement service. Where trust us you’d rather pay for the 30-150 dollar coolant flushing over the all mighty, super expensive 500-1500 dollar heater core replacement service.

Your radiator cap needs to be replaced. A bad radiator cap is such an easy fix but getting to the point of knowing that the overheating problem is due to your thermostat not working properly can get quite frustrating. Without a radiator cap pressure tester, it can be quite difficult to diagnose. If your radiator is spilling fluid around the cap as soon as you stop the car when it is overheating, you found the problem. Unfortunately, this is not the usual symptom of a bad cap. If it was only that easy. If you have a shop or parts store in town with a cap tester, take it in and have them check it for you. Typically we check them out free of any charges as do most local auto part stores.

You may have a blown head gasket. Do you know the symptoms of a blown head gasket? Is white smoke coming out of  your exhaust pipe? If so that is a good sign that you have coolant pouring into your car’s cylinders mixing with your air fuel mixture and then trying to burn. If your head gasket leak is external, you will see puddles of coolant under your vehicle. When it gets bad enough your car simply will not re-start in some conditions.