Handling An Overheating Engine

16 December 2017
 Categories: , Blog


The car's engine is the car's heart. It's what keeps the car moving reliably. When you start to notice that the engine is overheating, it's time to give your engine some attention. Follow these tips to keep your car running properly. 


There are a number of ways to stop your car from overheating:

  • keep coolant and oil filled
  • flush antifreeze every 30,000 miles
  • change oil every 7500 miles
  • keep an eye on the coolant gauge
  • regularly check for leaks


Neglecting to follow the simple steps above can create a big problem. The longer you neglect the issue, the more damage it will cause. The greatest damage occurs when antifreeze gets into the car's engine. This occurs through leaks and broken gaskets. When you have a leak or a broken gasket, you need to fix it immediately. When the antifreeze gets into the engine, it can warp the engine's cylinders. This is a much more expensive repair. Left unattended even longer, you may need to replace the entire engine. 

Signs of Overheating

The most obvious indication that your engine is overheating is steam escaping from the hood of your car. However, you can detect a problem before it gets to this point. Keep an eye on your coolant gauge. The gauge is typically very easy to read ranging from C for cool to H for hot with corresponding colors going from blue to red. Once the gauge reaches the red, your engine is too hot! You may also smell a burning smell coming from your engine. 

What to Do

When you do notice that your engine is overheating, take the appropriate steps to prevent any more damage. 

First, pull over to the side of the road as soon as it's safe to do so. Next, turn off your engine and let it cool off. This can take thirty minutes, so it's a good time to call work to tell them you might be late. Finally, it's time to diagnose and fix the problem. If you are not a properly trained mechanic, leave this to professional engine repair. Depending on the extent of the problem, drive the car to your nearest repair facility or call a tow truck. 

Important Disclaimer

If you do choose to examine your car yourself, do NOT remove the radiator cap until the car is completely cool. When depressurized, this cap will explode. If not cool, you can get severely burned. 

For more information, contact an engine repair service near you.