Four Symptoms of a Bad Car Thermostat

February 15, 2021 10:27 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

A car’s thermostat is a small but integral piece of equipment that helps the engine run at the right temperature. The thermostat helps moderate the temperature of your engine by allowing coolant to reach the radiator and cool the engine. If you’re a driver in New Palestine, IN, you need to make sure this crucial car component is operating correctly. Broken car thermostats can impact the performance of your engine and can lead to costly repairs down the road. Check for these four symptoms that tell you when to replace the thermostat in your car.

See if your temperature gauge is running hot

If you suspect your car is having thermostat issues, checking the temperature gauge on your dashboard is the first thing you should do. As you start your car, the temperature indicator should be on the cold side of the gauge. If your car’s thermostat is working correctly, you should notice the temperature gauge creeping up gradually as you drive. Eventually, the indicator should generally settle near the middle of the gauge, right at the midway point between cold and hot. This shows you that your engine is operating at the optimal temperature.

You might notice that the indicator doesn’t stop at this midway point, but instead keeps going all the way to the hot side. In this case, you can safely assume that your car’s thermostat is stuck closed, preventing coolant from flowing into the engine. When you see this happening, head to your auto repair shop to get the problem fixed before engine damage occurs.

See if your temperature gauge is running cold

Many drivers in New Palestine, IN think that a bad thermostat only makes an engine run hot. In fact, your car engine could be running cold if your thermostat needs repair. Broken car thermostats sometimes are stuck open, allowing coolant to continually move through to the radiator and making the engine cold. When you notice the temperature gauge struggling to reach the midpoint, it’s a good idea to have a professional perform a thermostat inspection.

Check the thermostat manually

Usually, the easiest way to tell whether you have a bad thermostat is by manually checking the temperature gauge yourself. Once you’ve used a pair of needle-nose pliers to remove the thermostat, put it in a bowl of hot water. Watch the temperature gauge of the thermostat as it adjusts to the water temperature—if the reading on the gauge doesn’t move, or if it shows a very different temperature than the water temperature, you know there’s a problem.

Check coolant levels

Monitor your coolant levels if you suspect an issue with your car’s thermostat. Fill your coolant tank to the line and check the level after you’ve driven for a few days. If the coolant levels drastically change, you likely have a thermostat issue.

If you detect a problem with your car’s thermostat in New Palestine, IN, don’t hesitate to get a professional opinion. Knowing when to replace the thermostat in your car can save you money by reducing your need for costly engine repair. Contact Auto Air & Heating, Inc. to repair this crucial component and keep your engine running properly for years to come.

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