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What Should I Do When My Engine Starts to Overheat and Fail?

An engine failure or overheating can be a driver's worst nightmare, leaving you stranded on the side of the road with uncertainty and stress. While these situations are undoubtedly distressing, knowing how to handle them calmly and efficiently can make all the difference. Here is our guide to overcoming these headache-indulging situations.

 Step 1: Stay Calm and Stay Safe

The first and most crucial step is to remain calm. Panic can lead to hasty decisions, potentially putting you and other drivers at risk. Immediately signal and pull your vehicle to the side of the road, away from traffic. Engage the hazard lights to alert other drivers of your situation.

 Step 2: Turn Off the Engine

In the event of engine failure or overheating, turn off the engine as soon as it is safe to do so. Continuing to run an overheated engine can cause severe damage (for example, the parts can friction weld because of the temperature), while a failed engine might worsen with continued operation.

 Step 3: Do Not Attempt to Restart

Resist the urge to restart the engine if it has failed. Doing so may exacerbate the issue and cause further damage. Instead, focus on identifying the problem and seeking appropriate assistance.

 Step 4: Don't Check Coolant or Oil Levels 

One of the most common mistakes people make is opening the hood and unscrewing the coolant or oil cap. Don't make the same mistake as them! When your engine is running hot, the coolant and oil might boil, meaning there is a lot of pressure. The last thing you want is hot fluid to be sprayed all over yourself when you unscrew the cap. 

 Step 5: Call for Help

If you are unable to diagnose or address the issue yourself, call for roadside assistance or a towing service. Explain your situation and location clearly to ensure prompt and accurate assistance.

 Step 6: Do Not Lift the Hood

While waiting for help to arrive, refrain from opening the hood or attempting repairs if you are unfamiliar with engine systems. Modern engines are complex, and attempting DIY repairs can lead to further complications.

 Need Towin Services or Some of the Best Mechanics in the Game?

If you are in a sticky situation on the side of the road, call us at Lorentz Automotive, and we will come and pick you up! We will also make sure to repair everything wrong with your car - making your journeys much safer.

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