Fairfax Auto Repair

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Prevent and Protect Your Car from Overheating

There’s nothing worse than having your engine overheat on the highway, and with the summer travel season approaching, you want to make sure your cooling system is running efficiently. While the cooling system normally works to convert heat energy from gasoline into air, if it malfunctions, it can literally add more fuel to the fire.

It’s important to get regular maintenance on your cooling system in order to ensure that your vehicle is running at the optimum temperature. You should also be keeping your fluids topped off, especially your anti-freeze levels. This is especially necessary if you plan to take long trips this summer, or regularly using your A/C. In the event your car does overheat while you're driving, here are several steps you can take to ensure your safety, and protect your vehicle.

1) If your car begins to overheat PULL OVER IMMEDIATELY. If you notice your temperature gauge is fluctuating rapidly, or stuck in the red H area, pull over and check your engine. Be careful, as there may be steam under the hood.

2) Turn off the A/C and Open the Windows. The less stress or force applied to your car’s engine the better. Also, turning off the A/C will allow your engine to temporarily cool off.

3) DO NOT OPEN YOUR RADIATOR CAP. There have been several emergency room visits due to radiator burns. If your car is overheating, pull over and allow time for the vehicle to cool down before opening the hood.

4) After your engine has cooled down, TOP OFF FLUIDS. Once the radiator has had time to cool down, add water and be sure to top off your anti-freeze level if necessary.

While these steps can be taken to save your car if it starts to overheat, it is important to take the necessary precautions to keep your cooling system working. Check out our website to see the specials and services we offer on cooling system maintenance, or schedule an appointment today to have your system checked.