Can You Drive a Car that’s Overheating?
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Can I Drive My Car if It Overheats?

By 8  am on

Can I Drive My Car if It Overheats?


Although it’s possible to continue driving your vehicle when it’s overheated, doing so poses dangerous risks for you, your passengers, and your automobile. Therefore, you should never drive a car when it overheats. Instead, it would be best to visit an automotive mechanic right away for assistance. Having a professional identify the issue and suggest maintenance solutions could lower the risk of accidents and injuries and keep your vehicle in good working condition.

Continuing to Drive

After turning off your car and letting it sit for a while, monitor the vehicle and look for a high reading on the temperature gauge or alerts like flashing dashboard lights. If you see none of these signs, it may be okay to continue driving your vehicle. However, going to an automotive dealership or mechanic is necessary to get immediate service. While it may seem like the car’s problems are gone, there’s likely still an issue with the engine, so it would be dangerous to continue driving. If you notice the vehicle heats up again on the way to the nearest repair shop, turn your car off and call for assistance immediately to prevent further damage.


The first sign is typically an engine temperature warning light. This generally appears as a thermometer symbol and/or the word “TEMP” on the dashboard. If you touch your hood and notice it’s hot, this could be a sign the automobile has overheated. Another warning sign to pay attention to would be a loud ticking noise. This is the result of a hot engine.

Coolant on the ground is another sign, and it occurs as a result of a blown head gasket. After this occurs, the motor oil and coolant will typically mix and leak out of the gasket onto the ground. An overheated engine is often irreparable, so it’s necessary to take care of your automobile and always have auto insurance.

Regular Inspections

Although regular wear and tear from driving a vehicle can cause it to overheat over time, there are steps you can take to lower the odds of this problem and other automotive issues. A low coolant level is one of the top reasons a vehicle overheats, which is why you should monitor your coolant regularly. Checking this issue could allow you to add more coolant or take other steps to prevent overheating.

During an inspection, a mechanic can look at the cooling system and determine if there are any leaks or other problems. At that time, the repair professional can service your cooling system to repair leaks and reduce the chances of overheating, allowing the car to continue running efficiently and correctly.


In addition to getting regular inspections, there are other steps you can take to keep your vehicle running smoothly and reduce the risk of overheating. For instance, driving in cold temperatures when unnecessary is something to avoid. Extreme temperatures can negatively impact the engine and cause your vehicle to overheat. It’s also best to drive slowly, which reduces the force on your engine and lowers the demands on the vehicle’s cooling system. Another precautionary method to try is keeping your windows rolled up, reducing the odds of additional heat building up and causing the car to overheat rapidly.

If your car is overheating, it could cost you a lot of money and stress if you don’t take care of the problem quickly. It could even pose a danger to you and other drivers, so don’t take a chance. At Altra Insurance Services, your safety is our primary concern. We provide reliable, affordable auto coverage as well as homeowners, renters, and motorcycle insurance. San Diego residents should call us today at (619) 404-6311.

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