Car breakdowns are definitely inconvenient. However, what’s more, inconvenient is when you don’t know what to do in case it happens to you. Most people know how to handle their vehicle when they get a flat tire, However, if your car is already smoking, do you know what to do?
A smoking car due to an overheated engine is a sure cause of delay. And it can also be a cause of panic especially if it is your first time experiencing it. To help you out with that, here is a guide on what to do when your car engine overheats.
The car engine can overheat due to a variety of reasons. First of all, it could be due to a problem with the cooling system. If heat is trapped and unable to escape, then that can overheat the engine. This could be due to a leak in the cooling system, a broken water pump, a faulty radiator fan, or a clogged coolant hose. With whatever reason it is, you need to make sure you deal with the problem immediately. That is to avoid serious and permanent damage to your vehicle.
When the engine overheats, the engine could fail. However, you can prevent this from happening if you catch signs that your engine is starting to overheat. If you are able to cool the engine before it fails, the damage received will be less. Here are signs to watch out for:
When you notice your car’s engine overheating, below are the steps you should take:
If you notice the signs of your engine overheating, the first thing you should do is switch off the air conditioning. This decreases the stress your engine receives. You could also turn on the heat so that the heat from the engine is pulled away. Just make sure not to drive too far because you’d be the one to suffer from overheating.
The next thing you should do is to find a safe place to pull over. Shut off your car and allow your engine to cool off for about 15 minutes. You’d be able to see the temperature gauge return to normal when your engine cools.
While waiting for your engine to cool, you could call for a towing service to bring your vehicle to the auto shop. There it would be checked thoroughly so that any damages could also be repaired.
It is best to keep a bottle of coolant handy so that you’d have something to use in cases like this. Check the level of the coolant and when it is low, topping it off could help protect your engine. It could cool off the engine to prevent further damage.
Topping off work if the coolant level is low. However, it would not be very helpful when the coolant hose is clogged or when the problem is in your water pump or radiator.
You have the choice here to have your car towed or to drive it to the nearest auto repair shop if you still can. If you choose to restart it and drive it, make sure you take note of the temperature gauge. If the temperature rises again, you have to pull over again and let it cool. It would be more convenient and quick to just have it towed to the auto shop of your choice.
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