Did you just look down at the temperature gauge on your dashboard and realize that your car is overheating? This is a very serious situation that should NOT be ignored! You need to Google “car overheating what to do” right away to find out how to react.
Far too often, people see that their car is overheating and keep right on driving it down the road. Then, they’re surprised when they start to see smoke coming from their engine and eventually see their engine go up in flames. You should avoid allowing things to get to this point by knowing what to do when your car is overheating. It could very well stop your car from catching on fire.
If you’ve arrived here after looking up “car overheating what to do,” welcome. We’re going to walk you through what it means when your car is overheating, what could be causing it to overheat, and how you should react to the situation. Let’s get started!
Car Overheating? What to Do at the First Sign of Trouble
If you see that your car is overheating, you might think that the first thing you should do is look up “car overheating what to do.” But before you do that, do this: Shut your car off! Pull it right off to the side of the road and shut it off so that it doesn’t get any hotter than it already is.
When your car is overheating, it means that there is too much heat that has built up in your engine. Your engine might be able to withstand this heat for a little while. But if you continue to add more heat to it, it’s going to be a problem. It’s why you need to make sure you shut your car off sooner rather than later.
What Could Happen If You Continue Driving a Car That’s Overheating?
Let’s say that you don’t heed our advice and you continue to drive around in a car when it’s overheating. It’s not going to be too long before you start to experience some big problems with your car. Here are just a few of the dangers of driving in a car that is overheating:
- The hoses in your car’s coolant system might begin to burst
- Your engine’s cylinder heads might start to get warped
- You might experience a blown head gasket in your engine (and it’s one of the WORST problems you can face when it comes to your car!)
- Your entire engine might start to melt
- Your exhaust system might get damaged
With these things in mind, it shouldn’t come as any surprise to hear that driving a car that’s overheating is one of the dumbest things you can possibly do. You could basically ruin your car in a matter of just minutes by allowing it to continue to overheat. You’ll be way better off pulling over, turning your car off, and Googling “car overheating what to do.”
Why Is Your Car Overheating?
Just because your car overheats doesn’t mean that you’re never going to be able to drive it again. But before you get it back out on the road, you’re going to need to figure out “car overheating what to do” and then get to the bottom of why your car started to overheat in the first place.
Cars can overheat for any number of reasons. Check out several of the reasons why you might find yourself behind the wheel of an overheating car below.
1. You’re Low on Coolant
All cars have coolant systems in them that are specifically designed to stop the engines in them from overheating. These systems are very complex in nature, but in order to do their jobs, they need to have one simple thing in them: Coolant.
As the owner of a car, it’s going to be your responsibility to check on your coolant levels every so often and make sure you have enough coolant in your car. If you don’t, it’ll only be a matter of time before you’re sitting on the side of the road Googling “car overheating what to do.”
Your car’s coolant reservoir should be pretty easy to find when you pop your hood. You should sneak a peek at it every so often to see whether or not you have enough coolant in your car. If you don’t, you will need to add some to the mix. You will also need to check your coolant system for leaks to be sure your car isn’t losing coolant all the time and putting itself at risk of overheating.
2. Your Water Pump Is Broken
You might have more than enough coolant in your car. But if your car isn’t able to circulate that coolant around, it’s not going to do you very much good. It’s up to the water pump in your car to keep the coolant circulating at all times so that it’s able to do its job.
Your water pump might go bad every now and then, though. In some cases, it’ll be because your water pump is simply too old to keep up with your car. In others, it’ll be because you have dirty coolant flowing through your coolant system and causing complications.
Either way, you might find that a water pump is to blame when you’re wondering, “Car overheating, what to do?” If that is the case you’ll need to replace your water pump as soon as possible so that it’s able to get the coolant in your car moving around again.
3. Your Engine Doesn’t Have Enough Oil in It
Most people know that the oil in their engine is there to keep all the moving parts in it lubricated. But what they don’t always realize is that the oil is also designed to keep your engine cool as it passes through it.
If you don’t have enough oil in your car at any point, your engine could suffer the consequences for it. Your engine could very well begin to overheat simply because of a lack of oil in your car. You’ll need to schedule an oil change ASAP to bring your engine’s temperature back down to earth.
4. Your Thermostat Is Bad
There is a thermostat in your car that operates much like the thermostat that you have in your home. It keeps an eye on the temperature in your engine, and when it gets to be too high, it tells your coolant system that it needs to spring into action to bring the temperature in your engine back down.
The problem is that, if your thermostat ever goes bad, you’re going to be searching “car overheating what to do” before long. That’s because your thermostat isn’t going to tell your coolant system that it needs to get to work, and that’s going to result in your engine heating up quicker than it should.
You’ll have to replace a bad thermostat so that it’s able to regulate the temperature in your engine again. Until you do that, your car is going to keep on overheating on you and giving you fits.
5. Your Radiator Is Busted
When you think about a radiator in a home, you think about how it helps to heat the home up. But in the case of a car, a radiator actually helps to keep its engine cool when it starts to heat up. It decreases the temperature of coolant, which then allows the coolant to pass through the engine and cool it off.
There are a bunch of fans inside of a car’s radiator, and if any of them experience issues, it’s going to lead to problems with the radiator as a whole. You’re going to find yourself scrambling to find out “car overheating what to do” when your radiator isn’t working like it’s supposed to.
Repairing or replacing the radiator in a car isn’t going to be cheap. But it might be the only way to cool your car’s engine off when it’s overheating.
How Can You Stop Your Car From Overheating All the Time?
Have you started to notice that your car is running hot almost every single time that you drive it? This is bad news. You’re going to have to figure out what you’re going to have to do to stop it from overheating on you since you could be forced to face further issues down the line if you don’t do something.
First and foremost, you should let your car cool off and then check to see how much coolant there is in it. If there isn’t enough coolant in your car, that’s going to be your problem right there! You won’t have to spend too much time reading articles on “car overheating what to do” since adding coolant will likely fix the problem.
But you might have to dig into the problem a little bit deeper in some cases. If you find that you have enough coolant in your car, your water pump could be the issue or your radiator could be causing you problems. You’ll have to explore every avenue when trying to diagnose why your car is overheating.
And at the end of the day, you’re likely going to have to rely on a mechanic to get to the bottom of why your car won’t stop overheating. They’ll be able to—safely!—experiment with your car and get it to overheat to see why it’s doing it. It’ll help you avoid driving around in a car that’s running hot more often than not.
How Much Will It Cost to Get a Car to Stop Overheating?
If the only thing you have to do to get your car to stop overheating is add coolant to it, consider yourself lucky! You can usually do this by spending less than $20 at an auto parts store.
But if you have some other issue with your car that has you Googling “car overheating what to do,” you might have to prepare to pay a pretty penny to remedy the situation. Most of the other problems that we’ve talked about here are going to be relatively expensive to fix.
How expensive? Well, here is what you should expect to pay to fix some of the issues that we’ve discussed here:
- Water pump replacement: Between $450 and $600
- Thermostat replacement: Between $190 and $230
- Radiator replacement: Between $575 and $775
Still, paying these kinds of prices will be way better than paying whatever it’s going to cost you to repair or replace parts of your engine. In fact, the cost to repair or replace parts of your engine when your car overheats too much will usually be so high that it won’t even make sense to do it.
Can You Sell a Car That Overheats on a Regular Basis?
Does it feel like you’re Googling “car overheating what to do” every few weeks because of another issue with your car? If so, it might be time to cut ties with your old car and move onto something else. There is no sense in spending a small fortune trying to get an old car to stop overheating.
You might not think that a car that overheats all the time would be worth much. But guess what? You could potentially put quite a bit of money into your pockets by selling your old car to a company like Cash Cars Buyer. We’ll pay top dollar for your car and haul it off for you so that you don’t have to worry about trying to drive an overheating car to us!
Intrigued? This is how you can sell your old overheating car to Cash Cars Buyer:
- Fill out our form to let us know a little bit more about your car
- Give us a little while to come up with an offer for your car
- Decide whether you want to accept the offer that we make you or reject it
- If you accept our offer, tell us when and where to pick up your car and drop off your cash
We try to make selling an old car as easy as we can! You won’t have to spend all your time Googling “car overheating what to do” after working with us. Contact us today to get more information on how to sell an old car.