Help! My Car is Overheating
Do you know how to recognize that your car is overheating and what to do if it is? It is very simple and something that every driver should know.
How do you know if your car is overheating?
- The temperature gauge on your vehicle’s dashboard is usually close to the middle. If this rises to ¾ or to the top you likely have a problem
- You could see steam coming out from under the hood
- The air conditioner could start blowing warmer
- There may be a burning type smell in the cabin
What should you do if your car is overheating?
- Turn your air conditioning off
- Find a safe space to pull off the road
- Turn your vehicle off
- Open the hood
- DO NOT EVER, EVER, EVER remove the radiator cap when your vehicle is hot or you could be seriously injured and burned.
- Look at the coolant tank to see if the fluid level is low (the plastic tank should be marked coolant and there will be a fill line).
- If the coolant level is low fill with water to the proper level
- Turn the vehicle back on and let it idle for a few minutes. Leave the A/C off.
- Watch the coolant tank as the water level will likely drop as water circulates through the engine. Keep adding water to the fill line until the level stops dropping.
Is your vehicle safe to drive?
- Once the water level is stabilized you should drive slowly and safely to the nearest repair facility
- Watch the temperature gauge. If it begins to rise, pull off the road and call a tow truck to help prevent serious engine damage.
- Your vehicle must be inspected to determine the cause of overheating
What causes overheating?
The cooling system is pressurized so leaks should be visible. These are the most likely causes of the problem and a relatively easy and inexpensive fix. Leaks may be found in:
- Coolant tank
Other issues may include:
- Faulty thermostat
- Blown head gasket
If you have any questions, please contact us.
Kia Country serves the greater Charleston area. If you live outside this region, please contact your local Kia dealer or Kia Motors America.