Even when the temperatures outside are not too hot, you may have found that your car tends to overheat fairly quickly after you start driving. If so, there are a couple of possible reasons why this keep happening.
1. Your Car's Coolant System Has a Leak
One of the most common reasons why a car overheats is that there is a leak in the coolant system. This system includes not only the radiator but also the overflow tank, hoses, and the water pump.
When your water or antifreeze leaks out from any of these parts, even if it is just a slow drip, the amount of coolant will decrease, making it harder for the system to cool your engine down. Then, as the coolant level decreases, it is more easily evaporated by the heat of the engine, which further reduces its level.
If you suspect a leak, check the level of coolant in your radiator to see if it is where it should be. Also, look at the overflow tank, which is usually a milky white container located on either side of the engine.
Just be careful when you check the fluid, as the system keeps it under pressure, especially when the engine is hot. If you attempt to remove the cap without waiting for the car to cool down, you may be splashed with hot coolant and seriously burned.
2. The Water Pump Is Failing
If you find that the coolant level seems to be normal, another possible reason why your car is overheating is that the water pump is failing. The water pump is what is responsible for pulling the coolant out of the radiator and circulating it throughout the engine. However, if the pump goes bad, it will either circulate very little fluid or do so sporadically, making the engine overheat in spurts.
Besides an overheated engine, another sign that your water pump has a failing motor is a horrendously loud screeching noise coming from under the hood of your car. At first, this sound may only be heard intermittently. However, as the pump's motor continues to fail, you will start hearing this noise constantly, starting a few minutes after the engine warms up.
No matter the cause, if your car continues to overheat, the excessive temperatures may cause damage to your engine, seals, and hoses, as well as increase the possibility of your car breaking down completely. As soon as possible, take your car to an auto repair service so they can find the issue and take the necessary action to fix it.