Car engine overheating: Cause and treatment?

Car engine overheating is a common problem that car owners face. When engine temperature exceeds safe levels, it can seriously harm the vehicle and even endanger the driver. Understanding the cause of overheating and knowing how to handle it is important to protect your engine and maintain your car’s performance. In this article, CARON PRO will help you learn about the causes of car engine overheating and provide some effective treatment methods to ensure the engine operates stably and safely.

What is car engine overheating?

The car engine is overheating

Car engine overheating occurs when the engine temperature exceeds a safe level. Car engines operate efficiently thanks to the process of burning fuel in the combustion chamber. However, the heat generated from this process needs to be controlled and cooled to ensure stable operating temperatures. When the cooling system has problems or is not working effectively, the car engine may not be cooled properly, leading to uncontrolled temperature increases and eventually overheating.

What causes car engines to overheat?

The car lacks coolant

The car lacks coolant

Coolant in a car plays an important role in heat transfer and cooling of the engine system when the vehicle is operating. When the vehicle lacks coolant, cooling performance is seriously affected, leading to the risk of engine overheating.

The cooling system in a car operates in a closed circulation system, so there is usually little loss of coolant. Therefore, if you see the coolant level dropping rapidly, there may be a problem in the cooling system. For example, the pipeline is leaking, the hole plug on the engine is corroded, the radiator radiator is damaged, the cylinder gasket is damaged, or the engine cylinder is cracked… This causes water leakage. cooling.

Coolant leaks can cause rapid water loss in the cooling system and affect the engine’s cooling ability. This threatens engine stability and safety and can lead to engine overheating.

The water tank is dirty

The water tank is dirty

The engine coolant tank easily becomes dirty if not cleaned regularly. When the radiator becomes dirty, it can become clogged, causing ineffective engine cooling and causing engine overheating in the car.

Since the coolant tank functions to contain and cool coolant before it is supplied to the engine, it must be kept clean to ensure smooth flow and effective cooling. When dirt accumulates in the radiator, it can clog vents and channels, affecting coolant circulation. When the cooling process is interrupted, the engine temperature cannot be regulated and overheating occurs.

Thermostat valve is defective

Thermostat valve is defective

The thermostat valve in a car has an important function in adjusting the amount of coolant through the coolant tank, thereby helping the engine cool down while operating. Therefore, if the thermostat fails, it will affect the engine cooling process. If not detected early and remedied, engine overheating can occur and cause overheating of the vehicle engine.

The thermostatic valve operates on the principle of opening and closing to regulate the flow of cooling water through the cooling water tank. When the engine reaches a certain temperature, the thermostat opens to allow coolant to flow through and cool the engine. Conversely, when the engine needs a higher temperature, the thermostat will close and limit the flow of coolant.

The fan is malfunctioning

The fan is malfunctioning

The engine fan is an important component in the cooling system that plays an important role in dissipating heat from the engine. When a problem occurs, the fan can greatly affect the cooling process, causing the risk of the car overheating because it cannot cool effectively.

The main task of the blower is to provide cool air inside the engine compartment to cool the temperature. When the engine operates and the temperature increases, the blower will operate to create air flow through the radiator, helping to dissipate heat and reduce engine temperature.

However, when the fan has problems or malfunctions, cooling performance will be seriously affected. For example, if the blower is not working properly or is not rotating, there is not enough suction or air pressure, not enough air flow is provided, which will cause poor cooling and the engine cannot be cooled properly. effectively. This can lead to engine overheating and the risk of the car overheating.

The water pump is malfunctioning

The water pump is malfunctioning

A malfunctioning coolant pump is one of the causes of car engine overheating. Water pumps often encounter problems such as water leaks, pump belts that are overstretched or too loose, and other problems.

The coolant pump in a car is responsible for providing coolant to the engine and ensuring the cooling process takes place effectively. However, when the pump has a problem, there may be loss of water or insufficient water flow needed to cool the engine. This leads to overheating in the car.

Some common errors encountered on coolant pumps include water leaks due to cracks or broken pump seals, pump belts that are too tight or too loose causing unevenness in water flow, and other problems. such as damage to the pump mechanism or damage to other important components in the pump.

The engine is lacking oil

The engine is lacking oil

Lack of engine oil can also cause the vehicle’s engine to overheat. Lubricants in cars play an important role in lubricating internal engine parts, reducing friction (preventing wear) and cooling the engine (preventing overheating). Therefore, when the vehicle lacks engine oil, the internal parts of the engine are not properly lubricated and cooled, causing overheating.

Lubricating oil is responsible for providing a layer of lubrication between touching surfaces in the engine. It creates a protective layer of oil to reduce friction between moving parts, such as pistons, camshafts and bearings. In addition, lubricants also have the ability to absorb and conduct heat quickly, helping to remove engine heat from important parts.

When the vehicle is low on engine oil, the oil level is low or gone, the parts inside the engine will no longer have enough oil to lubricate effectively. This can lead to high friction between parts and increased engine overheating. When there is no oil to cool and lubricate, the engine temperature will increase rapidly and cause overheating.

Engine malfunction

Engine malfunction

In addition to problems related to the cooling system, problems within the engine system can also cause overheating of the car’s engine, such as sudden shutdown, strange noises, or burning smells. To ensure efficient engine operation, good coordination between many parts is very important. In particular, the air supply system and ignition system play an important role.

A problem with any part of this system can affect the fuel combustion process and cause many problems, including engine overheating. According to experts, some common errors include clogged fuel injectors or misaligned injection angles, delayed spark plugs, problems with the pressure regulator, and the combustion chamber in the cylinder accumulating many pieces of coal (causing hinders heat dissipation), and clogged air filter, and many other errors. All of these errors can lead to engine overheating and related problems.

The weather is too hot

The weather is too hot

Besides the causes mentioned, cars can also overheat due to operating for too long under high temperatures in hot conditions. This situation often occurs especially on older cars, when the cooling system does not work effectively, leading to increased engine temperature.

When a car operates in hot weather, high ambient temperature along with the impact of sunlight can increase the temperature in the engine compartment. This is especially true for older cars, where the cooling system may have been used for a long time and has poor performance.

The cooling system, including the water pump, blower, radiator, and other components, needs to work effectively to cool the engine. However, after a period of use, these parts may become worn, damaged or not work as expected. This results in the cooling system not being able to cool the engine well enough, causing increased temperature and the risk of overheating.

How to handle overheating of a car engine?

In case you can stop the car immediately

When your car has a problem with the engine overheating, take the following steps:

  1. Stop in a safe place: Avoid stopping in places with a high risk of fire and explosion, such as gas stations or in dangerous areas.
  2. Open the car’s hood: Before opening the hood, check carefully. If the hood is too hot to touch or shows signs of releasing too much steam, wait a while for the hood to cool before opening it. While waiting, you can quickly cool down by spraying water on the hood. Once the hood has cooled, open it slowly and carefully as hot steam may escape.
  3. Wait 5 – 10 minutes for the car to cool completely: After opening the hood, wait another 5 – 10 minutes for the car to cool completely before proceeding with the next checks.
  4. Check the coolant tank: Note only check the coolant tank when the radiator cap has cooled. When opening the radiator lid, open it slowly to let the heat escape gradually. Avoid opening it quickly to avoid the risk of splashing water while the coolant is still boiling. If you detect a lack of coolant, add more coolant or use clean filtered water as a temporary emergency solution. However, after that, please rinse the cooling tank as soon as possible and replace the specialized coolant. If the coolant is still full, check the pipes, blower, and water pump.
  5. Take the car to a garage for inspection: After the engine has completely cooled down, take the car to a garage for inspection and troubleshooting. If the vehicle still shows signs of rapid engine overheating after a short distance, call a rescue service to tow the vehicle back and continue inspection and repair.

In case the vehicle cannot be stopped immediately

As a rule, when the car overheats, the first thing to do is stop the car immediately. However, in case the vehicle is moving in a busy road and cannot stop immediately, you can take the following steps to reduce engine temperature:

  1. Open the windows completely: This allows hot air to escape the car and create ventilation, helping to reduce the temperature inside the car compartment.
  2. Turn off the air conditioner and turn on the heating and radiator fan: Turn off the air conditioning system and switch to heating mode and turn on the radiator fan. This way, the heating system will use heat from the engine to warm the air in the car, helping to reduce engine temperature.
  3. Turn on your emergency lights: Turn on your emergency lights to let other vehicles know that you have a problem and need to stop safely.

After performing the above steps, try to find a safe location to stop your vehicle, like the side of the road or an open area. After stopping the vehicle, turn off the engine and wait at least 10-15 minutes for the engine temperature to cool down before continuing with inspection and troubleshooting.

Note that reducing engine temperature is only a temporary solution. To completely fix the problem, take the vehicle to an auto service center to have the cause of engine overheating examined and treated.

Reputable car repair address?


CarOn Pro – 5S standard car service system

Caron Pro is trusted and known by customers as a chain of 5S standard auto repair service centers. With extremely modern equipment, genuine spare parts, skilled technicians, a full range of services at extremely affordable prices and quality. With a variety of services and products, CarOn is committed to providing the most dedicated quality and service.

Please contact us immediately via Hotline: 1900633612 or 0919009069

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Lot P3, Thi Cam Street, Xuan Phuong, Nam Tu Liem, Hanoi
Phone: 0919009069
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455 Hoang Quoc Viet, Co Nhue 1, Bac Tu Liem, Hanoi
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Km14, National Highway 32, Lai Xa, Kim Chung, Hoai Duc, Hanoi (next to Hoai Duc welcome gate)
Phone: 0384653472
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Phone: 0963598600

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