6 Common Reasons for an Overheating Engine
An overheating engine is a huge problem and can have the potential for automotive disaster. Being out and about driving and suddenly finding that steam is pouring from your engine will no doubt scare you. There could be a whole host of reasons as to the cause of such an issue, from something quite simple to something far more dangerous.
1 – The Thermostat
If the thermostat in the engine is running correctly, the engine heat will be dissipated and distributed properly and the temperature gauge will register within its normal parameters. If the thermostat quits working or fails to open at the appropriate time, the coolant flow will become blocked and prevent the coolant fluid from circulating in the engine system. That can cause your vehicle engine to overheat.
2 – Faulty Sensor
If there are no visible signs of the engine over heating, but your temperature gauge is indicating otherwise, you might take a look at the coolant sensor. If any sensor is faulty it will give out false readings and information and in this case will fool your car into believing it is over heating, when it fact it isn’t.
3 – Cooling Fan Issues
An inefficient or faulty cooling fan on your vehicle will inevitably cause over heating issues. When your vehicle uses the coolant through the system the heat it consumes it has to be exhausted somehow. In order for the radiator to perform its function properly, the cooling fan needs to be working at its optimal capacity.
4 – Low Coolant level
It is not just the water in your system that helps cool the engine. Coolant is vital throughout the year to help regulate inner temperatures. Throughout winter the coolant helps keep the engine from icing and in summer, from overheating. Low coolant levels can cause overheating. You can temporarily top up with water if you are stuck without coolant but you should replace the balance as soon as you can.
5 – Water Pump Issues
A faulty water pump is a sure sign your vehicle will overheat. If the pump fails to pump, the water fails to circulate and cool the system. If the water is not cooling the system, the heat will have nowhere to escape to and will therefore find other means of releasing. You will definitely see signs of overheating in your engine if your water pump is busted.
6 – Radiator Cap
You might think it is an odd thing to consider, but, if your radiator cap is not screwed down tightly, steam will escape from it and water too. When the water in your engine reaches boiling point it will bubble over and hit the hot metal on the outside, causing steam to escape out of the hood of the car. The best course of action is to stop, turn off the engine, let it cool down for at least 15 minutes and then top the water up, replace the cap correctly and start the engine again.