Imagine driving somewhere far away, and all of a sudden, your Jeep overheats. Smoke is coming out of the engine and the red gauge is rising. It’s quite disconcerting, but you don’t have to panic. Take a deep breath and think of ways to cool down your Jeep’s engine.
Tip #1 Turn off the vehicle’s A/C
While driving, turn off the Jeep’s A/C and crank the heat to the maximum level. You’ll be surprised to know that this technique actually helps cool down the temperature on your vehicle’s engine bay.
Tip # 2 Pullover
After pulling over somewhere safe, turn off your Jeep’s engine and let it rest for at least 15 minutes. Pop up the hood and let the smoke subside before attempting to touch any components of the engine. Do not touch any parts with your bare hands to avoid the risk of getting burned.
Tip #3 Diagnose the Problem
Once your Jeep cools down check the engine and do your best to identify the root cause of the overheating issue. There are many factors that may cause your Jeep to overheat. While waiting for a professional to check your car, you can do temporary fixes to help resolve the issue.
So what do you need to do in case of an overheating engine?
Check your Jeep’s radiator.
Oftentimes, a clogged or damaged radiator or a leak on the radiator hose is the cause of overheating problems in any vehicle.
- Check your radiator cap. A simple problem like a broken radiator cap can cause overheating. Even a small hole or a crack on the cap can produce air pockets in the coolant, which is bad for your vehicle’s cooling system. You can easily replace it with high-quality Jeep replacement parts like the Crown Radiator Cap.
- Check your radiator’s coolant level. Add coolant if needed. Any vehicle that does not have a sufficient coolant level will overheat. Sometimes a sudden decrease in coolant level can be caused by a leak in the radiator hose or a broken radiator cap. In case there aren't any visible leaks in the radiator itself and its components, but your Jeep is still losing coolant, you might have a blown head gasket, a damaged cylinder head or bores, or a manifold leak. Also, check if the existing coolant is clean or has any sediments. If it has debris, the Jeep might already need a radiator flush. Some mechanics might recommend that you do a radiator flush once every five years or every 100,000 miles. Never use water as a replacement for coolant. Don’t forget to check the condition of your coolant reservoir. If it’s broken or has any leaks you can opt to replace it with top-quality OE replacement coolant reservoirs like the Crown Coolant Bottle.
- Check the radiator itself. It may need cleaning or if damaged, it may already need a replacement. Sometimes off-roading rigs like Jeeps are exposed to harmful elements like mud or debris, damaging or clogging the radiator. A broken radiator will definitely cause the engine to overheat.
- Check if the radiator fans are working. These fans are vital in keeping the engine cool. A working radiator fan should switch on while sitting in traffic because it mimics the movement of rushing air in the engine.
Check your Jeep’s thermostat.
Make sure that it’s working properly. A broken thermostat will block the proper passage of coolant in the engine’s cooling system. Replace it if needed. There are affordable Jeep replacement parts like Crown Automotive that sell thermostats for most Jeep models.
Check your Water Pump.
Having a faulty water pump disallows the proper flow of coolant in the engine’s cooling system. Make sure it’s working properly because if not, it will definitely harm your engine.
Check your Jeep’s oil level.
Any vehicle that’s low in engine oil will overheat. A sufficient oil level lubricates your engine’s components. This eliminates friction among moving parts, decreasing excessive heat on the engine.
Check the belts.
Check your vehicle’s fan belt. A loose or broken belt can cause the water pump to malfunction. Check for visible cracks on the belt’s surface. Replace if necessary.
Check the catalytic converter.
A bad catalytic converter prevents proper exhaust flow. This can cause a vehicle to overheat.
Try to remember the instance when your Jeep overheats. Does it happen very often? Did it overheat while driving or while waiting in traffic? Having the correct answer to such questions can be handy in diagnosing a vehicle’s problem.
Always remember that Jeeps aren’t your typical vehicle. It undergoes more wear and tear compared to regular vehicles. It is vital to have it checked every now and then. Vital engine components may easily get damaged while off-roading.
We can’t expect every driver to be a gearhead. Some are just your regular drivers that are not confident when it comes to tinkering with their cars. If this is the case, avoid fixing your car by yourself. You will just cause more damage to the vehicle instead of fixing the problem. Wait for a mechanic to check your vehicle.
Make sure you have emergency contact numbers saved in your phone in case you need to be rescued. In case you have done everything to cool down your car, and you simply can’t wait for an emergency team to help you, you can also opt to drive to the nearest gas station. Do not forget to monitor the temperature gauge while you drive. Some gas stations have small auto mechanic shops that can help you with your overheating issue. They also sell different kinds of engine oils, coolants and are equipped with water. These are vital in keeping your vehicle cool.
Overheating is one of the most common car problems. If your vehicle shows any sign that it is overheating, do not take it lightly. With proper vehicle maintenance, such issues can be easily avoided. You can avoid an expensive engine overhaul by simply replacing or fixing the parts that can help you eliminate the problem.