Reasons for Car Engine Overheating

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Car engines tend to overheat because of lack of antifreeze in the vehicle or because of a thermostat that sticks closed, restricting the coolant from flowing through the motor. Discover the most common reasons for overheating engines with information from a certified master mechanic in this free video on car maintenance and repairs.

Part of the Video Series: Car Maintenance
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Video Transcript

Good afternoon, my name's Tom Brintzenhofe, certified master mechanic from Redding Pennsylvania, and today we're going to talk a little bit about why vehicles overheat. Now the first rule of thumb, when vehicles overheat is, a lack of antifreeze in the vehicle. If you have yourself a leak, or it's not checked regularly, and your fluid level drops, that's a good indicator it's going to cause it to over heat. Your second thing that may cause it to over heat would be a thermostat that sticks closed, not allowing the coolant to flow through the motor at all, so it will make it overheat. Those are your two biggest causes of engines overheating. Other issues that may come up is mechanical problems, you might have yourself a clogged catalytic converter, not allowing the engine to breathe, it will build up heat that's on the inside of the engine. Another case might be a blown head gasket. If you find your coolants low, and you happen to find a leak on the outside, and you have a little bit of white smoke coming out of your tail pipe, that's a good indicator you have a blown head gasket. That also will make it overheat. There's some other things, maybe a bad fan not moving enough air over the engine will make it over heat at idle, but those are your biggest causes of your engines overheating. Hopefully that will clear you up on why engines overheat.

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