We’ve all seen it before: that person on the side of the road, standing in front of a vehicle with the hood up as steam and smoke billow out. It’s a problem that’s unmistakably linked to your radiator and concerns your engine’s ability to cool itself when working at top capacity.
For that person battling smoke and steam on the side of the road, it usually means putting in more coolant and driving directly to an auto repair shop in Williston, ND before the engine overheats again. In serious cases, it may even mean a tow is in order. Regardless, it’s a problem that needs to be fixed before it gets even worse.
So how do you keep radiator issues from popping up to cause you grief? There are a few ways to prevent them from arising, or at the very least, spot them before they leave you stranded with an overheated engine:
- Keep coolant levels steady: Ensuring your vehicle always has enough coolant is paramount for keeping your engine environment at an appropriate temperature. Low coolant levels can mean an inability for your engine to manage high heat. Keep your coolant topped off at all times, especially in the summer months.
- Watch for leaks: In addition to keeping coolant levels managed, it’s also critical to make sure you’re not leaking coolant. Keep an eye on your driveway or garage pad for colored stains or fluid of any kind. Coolant leaks are common—especially in the Midwest, where salted winter roads can erode vehicle components.
- Engine heat levels: There’s most likely an indicator or gauge on your dashboard for high engine heat. If this light flips on or the gauge goes up, it’s worth paying attention to. Spikes in temperature here and there may be easy to ignore if an overheat doesn’t happen, but they’re actually a warning sign that one is on the horiz
- Coolant color: Most coolants are yellow, green or blue in color. If you check your coolant and it’s a brown or black color, or seems thicker or more viscous than it should be, it’s time to schedule an appointment with an auto repair shop in Williston, ND. This generally means rust is affecting your coolant and will hinder your radiator’s ability to control engine heat.
- Keep engine maintenance scheduled: If your engine is running at its best, it’s going to be more fluid in its operations and easier to cool. One of the best ways to ensure your radiator is doing its job is to take care of your engine. A gunky engine is going to require more effort to cool and manage temperature, so by maintaining your engine you’re actually maintaining your radiator!
An overheating engine can be easy to avoid if you pay attention to the warning signs and keep up to date on your routine maintenance. In doing so, you’ll save yourself a lot of grief and the inconvenience of being sidelined with an engine that’s billowing smoke and steam! To schedule an appointment for routine maintenance, contact Chaney Total Auto & Exhaust Repair today.