When your car malfunctions from overheating, it will not only break down in the middle of the road but you may have to deal with irreparable engine problems all together. For this reason, knowing what causes your car engine to overheat could help you prevent it from happening or understand the best cause of action to take when that happens. Here are a few of the common causes of your car engine overheating.
The internal combustion processes that go on in your car's engine often produce heat. Coolants are usually needed to keep the heat at considerable levels. Therefore, if you have been having overheating problems regularly, the first thing you want to check is your coolant. Usually, improper circulation of the coolant will result in overheating problems. The improper circulation itself will be caused by three major coolant problems. The first and most obvious reason is low coolant levels. Refilling your engine coolant and making an effort to check the level regularly should help solve the problem. However, remember that low coolant levels may be caused by leaks from things such as a burst hose. Therefore, before you rush to refill the coolant, it would be a good idea to start with a pressure check for any leaks at your local auto service shop.
You could also be having coolant clogs and this are oftentimes caused by faulty parts such as a collapsed hose so make sure to check for those. Last, you could be using the wrong coolant so it's of vital importance to always stick to the coolant suggested by the manufacturer in your owner's manual.
The thermostat acts as a coolant regulator based on the temperature levels. Usually found between your engine and the radiator, it works by restricting the coolant from flowing to your engine until it warms up to a given degree of temperature. The thermostat is often closed and will open when this temperature is achieved. However, a defective thermostat, especially a broken one, may remain closed. This means when the temperature levels has been reached, there will be no coolant being released to your engine block and this is how you end up with an overheated engine. Have the thermostat checked for faulty issues and replaced as necessary.
If debris clogs your radiator, the efficiency of your car's cooling system will be affected and you may end up with an overheated engine. This is because blockages in your radiator will cause airflow problems. A thorough car wash should be able to clean out any debris. You want to check for build-up in the radiator too, especially oil build-up. This type of build-up is oftentimes a sign that the radiator's head gasket is blown. Last, look for any damaged radiator fins and have them replaced.