Auto Service: Why You Need to Maintain Your Car

Welcome to my blog. My name is Ken. One day, I was driving home from work when the engine in my car failed. While I waited for the recovery truck to arrive, I realised I didn’t have a clue what went on underneath the bonnet of my car. I signed up for an auto service course at my local community college, so I could gain the skills I needed to properly maintain my car and repair it if something when wrong while I was on the road. I wanted to start a blog to pass on these skills to other people so that they can look after their automobiles.

Easy Tips to Avoid Engine Overheating


You can avoid one of the most common causes of car breakdown by ensuring that your car engine does not overheat. By knowing a few simple facts about the secret inner workings of your car's cooling system, you can prevent this potentially serious situation.

Follow this quick guide to ensure that you never face engine failure from overheating and avoid the frustration of expensive repairs.

Know Your Cooling System Basics

The car's modern combustion engine produces heat, which converts into mechanical energy and drives the engine. Any excess heat needs to be quickly and efficiently dispersed through the cooling system. The job of the cooling system is to:

  • circulate coolant through the engine and remove heat via the radiator and
  • maintain a constant temperature for peak operating efficiency

The main system components are the radiator, cooling fan, thermostat, heat sensors, water pump and the belts, hoses and clamps that keep things together. Knowing what can go wrong with these will have you well armed against overheating problems.

Prevent Leaks in the System

Leaks are most likely to occur around the hoses and near the welds on the radiator. If the vehicle is losing coolant, the radiator will become low on fluid, and you may spot signs of greenish coolant on your garage floor. If this is the case, then you need to arrange for pressure testing at your radiator repair shop without delay.

You can prevent these troubles by checking your coolant level on a weekly basis. Your cooling system is easily identified, as it has a coloured cap. The transparent coolant tank allows you to check the level at a glance.

Take care when checking coolant levels. It is vital that you do not open the cooling system to add fluid while the vehicle is still warm. The contents are under substantial pressure, as well as being scalding hot. The best practice is to leave the car to cool overnight.

Avoid a Blocked Radiator

Some common causes for a blocked radiator are dead insects, dirt, gravel and other loose debris. These can usually be spotted and removed with a quick look under the bonnet and then check of the coolant for contaminants such as floating dirt particles.

A blocked-radiator problem can be easily avoided with regular vigilance and flushing with the correct coolant, rust inhibitors and anti-freeze. However, if you have bought a used vehicle and the previous owner was not diligent, you may inherit a radiator problem. A blockage will require the care of experienced car radiator repair professionals.

Check For a Faulty Thermostat

The thermostat can become stuck in the closed position and block the flow of coolant to the engine. The thermostat is located under the upper radiator hose that runs back from the engine to the radiator.

Run the vehicle until it warms up and then feel the hose. If it doesn't become warm to hot, then the thermostat is probably at fault. If you are not confident in replacing it yourself, a quick trip to the repair specialist is the easiest solution.

A Cooling Fan Glitch

The cooling fan is attached to the inside of the radiator. It is electric and runs only when it is needed. A heat sensor determines the temperature when it needs to automatically kick in.

If the fan is not automatically engaging when your engine is running and warm, then the sensor is likely to be the culprit. Fortunately, this is an inexpensive part and is very easily replaced.

Heat is a formidable enemy to your car engine. The slightest indications that your vehicle is running hot should be checked out immediately. The instrument panel temperature gauge warning, or any smells and sounds that might point to excessive heat, need prompt investigation. It is vital that you take your car to the local radiator shop without delay.

Driving the vehicle without solving these problems is asking for trouble. Remember, a simple repair that may only amount to just a few dollars could end up saving you thousands.


8 September 2016