Although you may love warm, fuzzy heat, your car needs to stay cool when the temperatures rise. An overheated engine can damage the vehicle and put your safety at risk. There can be many reasons why your car is overheating. The reasons are not limited to hot temperatures. Maybe your car is not working properly. Here are some commonly recognized problems that cause cars to overheat:
Every car is equipped with a cooling mechanism to keep the engine temperature low. If there is a leak, block, or pump failure, this cooling system will not work efficiently. In this case, the engine starts heating up. It can also happen in colder temperatures.
The vehicle thermostat controls the flow of coolant through the engine. Broken and malfunctioning can cause the thermostat to work ineffectively.
Oil helps lubricate the moving parts in a car and conducts excess heat away from the engine. If your car is low on oil, it can cause your car to overheat.
The cooling fan must be switched on and off at the right time to cool the engine properly. If the radiator fan is not working properly, the engine is likely overheating.
Here are our top 10 tips to help you make sure your car doesn’t overheat in summer.
Parking in the Shade
The simplest way to make sure your car doesn’t overheat is to park it in the shade, away from direct sunlight. Direct sunlight not only heats up the engine but also causes discoloration on the interior upholstery of the car like the body and seat covers. You might also consider tinted windows to keep sunlight out of the car and keep the interior relatively cool.
Finding shade to park your car has become a luxury, especially in cities like Toronto and Mississauga. If you know your car is going to be in the sun for long periods of time, it’s a good idea to bring sunshades with you.
Hot Air Exhaust in the Car
Leaving a car parked in an open parking lot with the doors and windows closed can trap a lot of hot air inside the car. It may be a good idea to leave the car windows down a bit so that air can circulate evenly throughout the car interior.
Opening Floor Vents
When entering a hot car, it can be tempting to turn on the air vents to blow the AC directly at you. However, when hot air rises up, experts recommend directing the airflow towards the floor so that you can more easily push the hot air trapped in the car. Once the car is cool you can open the upper vents.
Use the Fresh Air Setting
Using the air circulation setting in a car with the windows closed means you are getting the same warm air that is circulating in the car. Be sure to use the fresh air setting so you can let warm air in and cool air out.
Use the temperature gauge as an indicator of your car’s temperature. Make sure the device needle is pointing to the center. If it is showing signs of overheating, turn the car off and allow the engine to cool.
Be sure to check your coolant level and add coolant if necessary. Always wait for the engine to cool before counting the coolant. Before adding fresh coolant, have your coolant system completely drained by a mechanic every 40,000 miles.
If you’ve had your car for more than three years, chances are the battery is causing the car’s engine to overheat. Car experts can help you determine whether you need a replacement.