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What to Do if Your Vehicle Overheats

We're in the middle of summer in Colorado. The combination of mountain driving with some warmer temperatures will put extra stress on your engine. What do you do if your vehicle happens to overheat? Here are some helpful tips from Colorado Springs' own LightHouse Automotive.

1. Turn the A/C Off

The first preventative step you can take when you notice your vehicle is running hot is to turn off the air conditioner. Even turning the temperature dial to hot can be helpful as it will draw away the hot air from the engine. With the A/C on, your engine will be working harder and overheating becomes a real concern.

2. Pull Over

If the engine does actually overheat to a point where you see steam coming from under the hood or the dashboard temperature gauge displays a warning, you will want to pull over as quickly as you can to let the car cool down.

3. Let the Vehicle Cool Down

Take a few minutes to let the vehicle cool down before attempting to get back on the road. In some cases, this may be all you need to do. If the overheating persists, then it may be a sign of a bigger problem.

4. Be Careful

If you are pulled over and decide to check under the hood yourself, be very careful. Remember your engine is overheating, so everything in there will be even hotter than normal. Be extremely cautious when removing the radiator cap to look inside or add fluid/water. Pressure, heat and steam can build up to dangerous levels. Never touch the cap with your bare hands unless the vehicle is completely cooled down. 

5. Seek Help

If your car is overheating and won't cool down enough to let you continue driving to your destination, call for roadside assistance. If you are able to keep driving, but have had persistent overheating issues, you'll want to bring your car into an auto repair shop for a detailed inspection. Let the professionals identify and fix the problem. A minor repair now can prevent major engine damage in the future. If you ignore an engine that regularly overheats, that engine will not last long and you'll be looking at thousands of dollars to have it replaced or rebuilt.

For all your engine and cooling system repair and maintenance needs in Colorado Springs, count on the auto repair experts at LightHouse Automotive. Call our shop today at (719) 465-0302 or schedule your service appointment online.


Car Care Tips
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