What to do if your car overheats: 10 must-know things for Pinoy drivers

Updated Mar 06, 2021 | Same topic: Survive driving in the Philippines

Helpful tips and guide on how to lower your engine's temperature!

The cooling system plays a vital role in your car. That’s why we always need to check this particular system to avoid overheating or it can damage your car’s engine. Once you see that your car is starting to overheat, follow these steps we prepared so your car can avoid further damage and you could determine what to do next.

The following steps show the details to fix it earlier before your vehicle’s engine damages itself and you end up paying for more than your cooling system.

Whether you’re on the go, in a hurry or you just can seem to stop the car; there is a way for you to calm down your car’s rising temperature without having to go to the mechanic. For starters, Philkotse.com will tell you about the right way to lower your engine’s temperature if it is ok for you to pull up on the side of the road.

1. Put a halt to your drive

Your temperature gauge will most likely be the first one to tell you that your engine isn’t in a really good mood. Once you notice that the pointer is directed at the H area then we suggest you pull over immediately. The H in your temperature gauge stands for Hot and continuing your drive will only make the situation worse.

Be mindful of the weather as well, the Philippines is well-known for being a tropic country and the sunlight and temperature here can be unforgiving. This could contribute to your engine’s temper.

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Once you notice that the pointer is directed at the H area then we suggest you pull over immediately.

2. Pop up your hood

Get out of the cabin once you pop the hood and let all that unnecessary steam out. Also, make sure that you know your car well, there could be a risk of you burning yourself if you hold on to the wrong pieces.

3. Wait before you open the radiator pressure cap

Imagine all the intense pressure that built up within that small space. If you pop the cap immediately, steam and radiator fluid could spew out and burn you. Wait until the cap is cooler.

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If you pop the cap immediately, steam and radiator fluid could spew out and burn you. Wait until the cap is cooler.

4. Get a visual on your coolant

Feel free to check your coolant tank and take note of the level that the remaining fluid reaches. Most cars will have a coolant tank with lines that indicate the maximum as well as the minimum amount of coolant that the car can drive off with. Check if your coolant is still within the safety levels; if your coolant is below the indicator mark then that could be the reason why your engine is heating up out of the ordinary levels. You may also result in these procedures if they apply to your car.

  • Top-off your reservoir with some coolant until the indicated maximum line. Most cars will let you refill the reservoir even while the engine is still raging hot.
  • If only a radiator is present and no coolant, you need to wait for the engine to cool before you attempt to check the level of fluid.

>>> Read more: Distilled water vs Coolant: Which is the best product for your radiator?

5. Check for leaks in the car’s cooling system

If you think your cylinder head or radiator may be damaged, they may be a pesky leak in your car’s cooling system. If you have a good amount of knowledge about cars then we suggest you check the cylinder head or the radiator for any signs of a clear leak.

We promised that you wouldn’t need the help of a mechanic here but if you don’t really know what you’re doing, we suggest you accept this as a last resort. They should be able to conduct an easy procedure called a pressure test on your car's cooling system.

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If you think your cylinder head or radiator may be damaged, they may be a pesky leak in your car’s cooling system

6. Use your old noggin

Take common sense and apply it to this situation once you feel like you’ve done everything right. If you were able to point out the problem to a mere low-level of coolant; and you were able to top it off then you should be good to go. However, if you’re still on the dark side, then call for help or resort to these options;

  • If your car is out of coolant and you don’t have any to fill it up with then just don’t drive the car. This will save you from thousands worth of engine damage.
  • If help is reachable, then take advantage of it. Your car is better off towed than acquiring more damage if you force to drive it.

Like we promised we also spilled some tips for you to use on your hot engine in a case where driving your precious car is necessary. This is usually if you’re stuck on the side of the road in the middle of who-knows-where and the time is far from daylight.

>>> Related: Car's overheating with full coolant: What's wrong?

7. Turn your AC off

Turning the air conditioner on aggravates your engine to extremes you can’t imagine, especially in the case of an undependable cooling system. Make sure you turn this off to lighten the pressure you are exerting on your engine.

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Make sure you turn the AC off to lighten the pressure you are exerting on your engine.

8. Turn on your heater instead

The heater in the car uses in-house engine heat. So if you use the heat coming from the engine, you are actually using it as an exhaust to release some of that damaging heat. If you don’t like turning off the AC and turning the heater on instead, then open the windows so you’ll be comfortable as well as to release the heat.

9. Keep a close eye on your temperature gauge

If this doesn’t work as fast as you need it to be, then turn off the engine or a moment.

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Keep an eye on the temperature gauge on your dashboard.

10. Turn the engine off when you can

If you are in the middle of traffic then turn your engine off every time you come to a halt that will last more than a minute. This will lighten the load on your engine and it can cool faster. Make little stops when you’re stuck in traffic; for example, at a red light or any situation that will let you do so.

>>> See also:

Hanna Sanchez

Hanna Sanchez

Author

Hanna is one of the most competitive swimmers in the country during her day. It was not long before she discovered her passion for the automotive industry as well. Nowadays, she balances her passion through writing as well as coaching.

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