Top 5 reasons why you car is overheating 1. There is no coolant in your vehicle: Coolant can be lost by leaking eternally or internally through the combustion chamber. Check for leaks around the radiator, water pump area, thermostat housing, throttle body area, check upper radiator hose and lower radiator hose. Check for hoses going through the firewall to the heater core. Also, check for leaks on the passenger mat. If so, the heater core is leaking. 2. Non Operating Fan: If your vehicle is overheating sitting at the stop light, there is a good chance the fan is not functioning. Give power to the fan by using a jumper cable from the battery negative and positive directly to the fan. If it does not turn on replace the fan. In addition, the fan turns on when it reaches above 200 F or more depending on the vehicle make and model. Also the fan should turn on when the temperature gauge needle reach above the center line. If it does not turn on, replace the fan. If the vehicle has a fan clutch, check with the engine running, use a newspaper and touch the impeller of the fan. If it stops, the fan clutch is faulty. Becareful when performing this, it can be dangerous. 3. Stuck closed thermostat or faulty radiator cap. Usually, when your vehicle overheats, it is recommended to replace the thermostat and radiator cap. It is rather inexpensive and may cause overheating. Check the radiator cap for rust, if it looks rusty it’s time to replace it. 4. Clogged radiator: To test for a clogged radiator, run the engine until the temperature gauge reaches the centerline. Turn the engine off and disconnect the battery to prevent the electric fan from turning on. Place your hand on the radiator and check the left and right side, top and bottom of the radiator. It should feel warm/hot all around. If one side is noticeably cooler, the radiator is clogged. Remember; be mindful when touching the radiator as this can lead to burns. 5. Failed water pump: There is really no good way to test for a failed water pump other than finding leaks around it. Usually, the water pump is located on the same side as the drive belt, serpentine belt or timing belt. If you see a puddle of coolant around that area suspect a leaky water pump. Now for the addition not mentioned in the top 5. Blown head gasket: Remove the engine cap with the engine off. Look for milky substance if it is milky suspect a blown head gasket. The coolant is mixing with the engine oil. In addition, if the engine is misfiring or has zero compression when doing a compression test, suspect it as well. Always use a blown head gasket tester to confirm this. Air in the cooling system: Air in the cooling system can cause the vehicle to overheat. Start by bleeding the air at the bleeder valve or use a spill free funnel and let the vehicle run until all the air is removed. Clogged catalytic converter: An engine needs to inhale and exhale. If the catalytic converter is clogged the heat lingers around and overheats the engine. Usually, a vehicle has a hard time passing over 30-40 mph when the catalytic converter is clogged. Also if you get a p0420 code using a scan tool, usually that is a catalytic converter code. And lastly Blockage: Check for leaves or mud blocking the radiator fins. Use an air compressor to blow the leaves away or clean off the mud with a garden hose. I hope this top 5 is useful in self diagnosing your vehicle and Don’t forget to give me a thumb and subscribe. Any question, leave a comment below and I will help you answer your question.
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