What to do when your car overheats - Hyundai Genesis Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-08-2010, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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What to do when your car overheats

If you guys are getting the same type of weather we're getting here right now. This is something that will definitely help you out. I personally had a really bad experience before with trying to open a steaming radiator cap. So hopefully this will prevent anything like that from happening to you. I copied and pasted this article for you guys to read.

What to do if your car overheats

With blazing temperatures reaching into the 90s and to more than 100 degrees in many parts of the country, itís important to pay attention to your car and look for signs that the engine may be overheating. This can be your carís quick route to the junkyard--if you donít act fast.

An overheated engine can occur at any time; hot days and stop-and-go traffic are an especially tough combo. Be aware of the temperature gauge in the dashboard creeping up into the red zone or a warning light screaming ďTEMP.Ē Or worse yet, steam billowing from under the hood. Lots of things can cause an engine to overheat, such as a loss of coolant due to a leaking hose or radiator, a worn or broken fan belt, a bad water pump or thermostat, or an electrical problem. It can even overheat on a cold day if the coolant is too diluted with water to keep it from freezing.
If your car has a temperature gauge, get to know where the needle is normally. If itís higher, that could be your first sign of trouble. Get hoses and belts checked periodically. Replacing these or a thermostat often costs less than $100 to $200; larger repairs will be pricier. But thatís still far less expensive than repairing or replacing an engine.

Here are some steps to take if you notice your car starting to overheat.

1. Turn your heater on full blast. That helps drain some heat from the engine while you find a place to stop. It is a helpful little trick to use even when the temperature gauge is running high but not in the red zone.

2. Get off the road and stop. As soon as you can, drive to a safe location and turn off the engine.

3. Lift the hood. That will help the engine cool down faster. But donít do it if steam is coming out. And donít remove a hot radiator cap. Hot, pressurized coolant and steam could erupt from the radiator, burning your hands. And never add cold water to an overheated engine; the abrupt temperature change can severely damage the engine.

4. Let the engine cool down. Normally it takes at least a half hour to an hour for a hot engine to cool down. If you want to call for roadside assistance, nowís the time. You might need a tow truck.

5. Check the coolant tank. Itís a translucent plastic tank located under the hood, near the radiator. If itís empty, suspect a leak, which youíll be able to detect if thereís liquid dripping from under the engine. Engines are designed to use coolant thatís a 50/50 mixture of antifreeze and water. If you have coolant in the right mixture, you can add it to the coolant tank or the radiator--but only after itĎs cool to the touch. If you donít have coolant, you can simply pour water into the coolant tank so you can limp along to a repair shop. On the other hand, if thereís plenty of coolant in the tank, the overheating could be caused by an electrical or mechanical problem. Adding more coolant wonít help.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-08-2010, 05:25 PM
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really helpful info there. i had a few of my cars overheat before already. i didnt realize pouring water to make it cool down was a bad idea. ive been doing that everytime i overheat. plus that trick with the vent, i never knew about that.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-09-2010, 08:59 AM
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Call for help.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-21-2010, 06:03 PM
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Very cool! thanks for posting this! I would never had thought to use the heater to remove heat from the engine. Fortunatly I have not had a car overheat on me in a very long time. Knocking on wood!
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