Comprehensive Guide to Handle Car Overheating

You are driving down the road to work, listening to the radio, and humming along when suddenly BLAM! And smoke starts coming out of your engine bay. You check and see that your thermal gauge is indeed on the 'Hot' end and is gripped by panic. Well, what do you do now? And what should you do to prevent such a situation from occurring again? Car Overheating is a classic and serious problem, and we have put up this guide to help you with exactly that!

Why Do Cars Overheat?

Well, car heating problems happen for a variety of reasons. Some of these could be:

1. Faulty thermostat

The thermostat is the part of the engine that controls the flow of coolant. If the thermostat stops functioning properly, the coolant isn't transferred to the engine when required, and this causes overheating.

2. Water Pump Issues

As the name suggests, this device pumps water that cools the engine, in and out. Car engine overheating can often be a result of a faulty water pump causing no absorption of the engine heat and thus overheating.

3. Damaged Radiator

The radiator houses the architecture that lets the water pass, cooling the engine. If this framework does not work at its optimum capacity, cooling is severely reduced, and overheating occurs.

4. Other reasons

Faulty pipes and bad quality coolant are some of the causes of engine overheating.

What To Do When Your Car is Overheating?

When your car is overheating while you are on the road, the first thing to do is:

1. Pullover calmly to the side of the road. Let your car cool down a little bit in the shade if possible. This gives the car time to cool itself naturally and you to think.

2. Turn on the heater to the maximum. The heater will pull in the heat from the engine. This works well by balancing the thermodynamic equilibrium and thus, cooling the engine.

3. Do NOT open the coolant bay immediately. Unless you want to get splashed by boiling hot coolant, let it simmer down for approx 4-5 minutes before opening the lid. Other fluids may be boiling at this point, so be careful when you open the bonnet as well.

4. Top up your coolant. If your coolant level is low, top it up with coolant. You should carry an extra bottle of coolant with you. If coolant is not handy you may use water in emergency cases only.


When you are safely home/at your destination, the next important thing to do is to get your heating car looked at by a professional. An overheating engine may be a result of one or more issues that aren't always apparent. An experienced professional with experience can deduce the root of the issue and help you get rid of it to keep you safe in the future.