Updated at: 20-03-2022 - By: micdot

This article contains affiliate links. A little commission will be paid to me if you purchase something through one of the links. Although you may have heard that an overheated car is to be expected, this is not the case. Damage from an overheated engine might be substantial. As a result, if your car appears to be overheating while you’re driving, it’s best to pull over and take the necessary steps to cool it down. However, what are the 10 most common causes of car overheating?

Overheating is a problem that can occur for a variety of causes. This essay will only focus on the top 10 causes of overheating, because mentioning all of them would be too cumbersome. Broken components, on the other hand, may result in engine overheating.

What Are 10 Common Causes Of Overheating?

Without further ado, here are the top ten most common reasons for your car to overheat, as listed by auto experts:

1. Thermostat Issues

If your car is overheating, it’s possible that the thermostat valve is to blame. Overheating is caused by a lack of coolant flow through the radiator due to a malfunctioning thermostat. Thermostats are really valves or switches that control the flow of coolant in a vehicle. Various factors can cause it to malfunction or break. When your automobile starts to overheat while you’re driving, be careful to check it out.

2. Leaky Gasket

Whenever the head gasket has a hole in it, coolant will seep out, and the oil and water will mix together. Your engine will suffer greatly as a result, so have it rectified as soon as you can. If you ignore a leaking head gasket, you could end up with a ruined engine, which will cost you a lot of money.

3. Damaged Fan Belt

The engine may overheat if the fan belt is missing or broken. This is due to the fact that the fan belt also circulates air in the engine compartment to keep the area at a reasonable temperature. You’ll need a new one if your existing fan belt is broken or needs to be reinstalled after it has fallen out of the motor.

4. Faulty Water Pump

The engine’s water pump is a critical component for maintaining a steady operating temperature. As a result, your engine may overheat if the water pump is leaking or damaged. Dirt and debris can also cause problems with the water pump, so it’s important to clean the engine area on a regular basis.

5. Insufficient Coolant

Your engine may overheat if you add a small amount of coolant. To keep the engine running efficiently, coolant is pumped into the system. The coolant/antifreeze liquid is expected to reach a certain level, and your automobile manufacturer will mark that on the label. You may never have to deal with an overheating engine if you always use enough coolant. You should also follow the guidelines in your car’s manual when filling up the motor fluids.

It’s unsafe to try to drive a car without antifreeze or coolant in the reservoir.

6. Clogged Components

These vital components might become blocked or clogged over time due to engine deposits (as a result of dust and grimes that enter the engine bay when driving). If the clogged component contributes to the engine’s cooling, this could lead to overheating. After a few miles, wash the engine compartment to prevent this. It’s important to remember that the engine isn’t to be washed in the same way as the rest of the vehicle. It’s best to follow a car wash guide to avoid damaging any of the engine’s more fragile parts.

7. Low Oil

Overheating can be caused by low oil levels, yes. The engine’s health depends heavily on the quality of its oil (temperature and performance). The oil should be checked and topped off if necessary. You should always use the correct type of oil in your vehicle.

8. Clogged or Damaged Hoses

A car’s engine bay is filled with hoses that transport various liquids to various parts of the vehicle. Overheating can occur if one or more of these hoses are defective. Coolant circulates through hoses, so check the hoses first when dealing with an overheating engine.

Due to high pressure, the hoses can come free and fall off. If they’ve been damaged, simply reattach them to their original locations.

9. Leaks In Different Components

Over time, the gasket, hoses, pumps, etc., all have the potential to leak owing to the constant pressure they are under. Finding leaks in various components can be challenging, but it is possible that this is the cause of your engine’s overheating. Get help from a mechanic at an auto shop if you’re having trouble discovering the faulty components.

10. Dirty Engine

Dirty engines can overheat, even though it sounds awkward to you. Cleanliness is key when it comes to driving an automobile, since dirt and grime can obstruct the free movement of air and other vital fluids. Dirt and allergens in the engine compartment can be removed by running water through it.

Infrequent maintenance and accumulated filth in the engine compartment are the most common causes of overheating. Here are some helpful ideas for dealing with a sweltering engine.

What To Do When Your Car Engine Is Overheating

As soon as you see the “High Temperature” indicator light on your dashboard or realize that your car is getting hot, turn off the air conditioning and find a safe location to pull over. Before attempting to open the bonnet, wait for the car to cool down to avoid catastrophic burns on your hands. Check the coolant level to see whether it needs to be refilled. Do not start the car for some time, and when you reach at your ultimate destination, do not forget to troubleshoot the car to find out what caused the overheating.

Get it checked out by a mechanic who knows how to find out what went wrong if you can’t figure out what’s wrong on your own.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if you keep driving an overheated car?

If you continue to drive an overheated automobile, you face the risk of warping the cylinder heads, which can cause diminished power, excessive oil consumption, and misfiring. Belts, wiring, and sensors could potentially melt if your car’s head cylinder overheats.

How much does it cost to fix a car that overheats?

Repairing an overheated car might cost anywhere from $300 to $2000, depending on the type of car and the origin of the problem.

How do you know if you blew your engine?

White exhaust is an indication of a blown engine, while blue exhaust could indicate that your engine is ready to be blown out of your car. You may notice blue smoke coming from your engine if you’ve got a lot of raw engine oil in the combustion chamber.

Can you still drive a car with a blown head gasket?

Even though you can theoretically still drive your car with an engine that has a blown head gasket, it’s never a good idea.

Is it worth fixing a blown head gasket?

The repair of a blown car head gasket is worthwhile if the vehicle was in good condition prior to the head gasket failing.

How much does it cost to fix a head gasket?

It can cost anything from $1,624 to $1,979 to mend or replace a head gasket on a national average. There are $715 to $832 in parts and $909 to $1147 in labour costs for a typical project of this size.

What should I check after my car overheats?

It’s best to find a safe parking spot and inspect your radiator for water leaks as soon as you realize your car is overheating. Also check to see if your fan belt has broken, as these are two major reasons of engine overheating.


Ten common reasons of overheating are as follows: Ten of the most common causes of overheating have been identified based on our research. In the case that your car engine overheats, you can prevent it by washing the engine every now and again, refueling the required fluids, and scheduling regular tune-ups.