How do I stop my car from overheating?

About two weeks ago, my car started having problems with warming up. It wouldn't warm up at all after idling and the heater wouldn't work. I had to go to work so I drove it anyway. I went and got an oil change, and things were fine for about 5 days. It was warming up ok. Then one night at a friends house I tried to start it, it tried to start but wouldn't, making a repetitive DUT DUT DUT DUT DUT sound. After waiting about 15 minutes it finally started and I made my way home, the car again, not showing a change on the temp gauge And this RED lightening sign popped up when I was almo
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Once the car is completely cool, check the coolant level in the radiator. If low, that will cause overheating. If it is low, you might have a leak that should be diagnosed. If the level of coolant is correct and yet your vehicle was not warming up properly that is often a indication of a stuck open cooling system thermostat. However, now you are experiencing the opposite problem which is overheating. A stuck closed thermostat could cause that but so could a low coolant level, a non operational cooling fan, a partially plugged radiator, a faulty water pump, and other causes. The warning light you are referring to – the lightning bolt – signifies that there is a fault with the electronic throttle control (ETC) system. It is possible that the hard starting you experienced is a consequence of an ETC fault. What I would recommend is an overheating diagnostic(https://www.yourmechanic.com/services/car-is-overheating-inspection) as well as an inspection of the ETC system. With that the Mechanic will be able to identify the needed repairs and let you know of the cost to repair.

How to Identify and Fix Common car Problems ?

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The most common reasons a Dodge Nitro is overheating are a coolant leak (water pump, radiator, hose etc.), the radiator fan, or a failed thermostat. Coolant leak (water pump, radiator, hose etc.)
A damaged fuel system is the most common reason an overheated engine may not start. A faulty system can cause the motor to get hot and produce heat and vapor, which creates difficulty for the fuel to circulate in the engine. Blown head gasket. A blown head gasket could also be a significant cause of overheating.
Leaks are the #1 reason a vehicle begins to overheat. Leaks in hoses, the radiator, water pump, thermostat housing, heater core, head gasket, freeze plugs and a few other things can all lead to problems with the vehicle`s cooling system.
Technically speaking yes you can use plain water in your cooling system but it isn`t recommended as a long term solution and certainly not in extreme weather conditions.
If your vehicle overheats often and constantly loses coolant, the problem may be caused by one or more leaks in your cooling system. If your vehicle overheats in normal weather and traffic, you may need to add liquid to the system, replace the thermostat, adjust or replace the accessory belt, or check the water pump.
Can an engine survive overheating? Yes – as long as you respond quickly and don`t let your car go into full meltdown mode, it should be repairable. Too much heat can result in further complications, such as cracks leading to significant oil leaks or loss of performance.
Why is my car overheating but it has coolant in it? It could be that the coolant concentration is not correct, or you may have a bad thermostat, a failed water pump, broken drive belt, or a bad radiator or radiator fan.
Repeated overheating can be a sign of serious engine damage. Repeated use of an overheated engine can accelerate that damage rapidly. In extreme heat, core parts of the vehicle`s engine can crack, warp, and fail — resulting in instant death to your vehicle`s powerplant.
Sign 1: Temperature Gauge

While you might be tempted to think this reflects the outdoor temperature (some cars have this feature, too) the temperature gauge reflects how hot your engine is. When you see it rising towards the red temperature indicator, your engine is overheating.

Reasons a Dodge Nitro Heater Isn`t Working. The most common reasons a Dodge Nitro heater isn`t working are a broken heater blower motor, a problem with the thermostat, or a failed heater blower motor resistor. Search our network of RepairPal Certified shops near you to speak with a technician about your issue. Oops!
Poor quality or defective RAM can sometimes cause heating issues. Leaving it in will also shorten the life expectancy of your system if left unchecked. Don`t` worry too much.
Dust and dirt can accumulate on your RAM over time, which can affect its performance and cause overheating. To clean your RAM, you need to power off your computer, unplug it from the power source, and remove the RAM sticks from the motherboard.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

My heat in my car stopped working two days ago and now my car is overheating. I put antifreeze in my car and it’s still overheating 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix
ANSWER : Hi there – you may have 2 related events here, a coolant leak, and a problem with the heater system. The current issue may be air inside the cooling system, which can cause overheating, and a lack of heater function. The lack of heater function could have 5 causes: the engine is not getting up to correct temperature (center of the gauge) due to a malfunctioning thermostat, the heater control valve is not letting hot coolant into the heater core, there is a restriction in the heater system that is preventing adequate hot coolant flow through the heater core, the heater fan is not working to transfer heat from the heater core to warm air for the passenger compartment, or the air blend doors inside the heater are not working properly to route warm air to the desired vents. I would recommend a heater system inspection](https://www.yourmechanic.com/services/heater-is-not-working-inspection) by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will come to your location, diagnose this problem, give you an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs.

When I stop at the stop light or a stop sign my car shuts off.
ANSWER : It sounds like you may have a dirty or failing idle air control valve. The idle air control valve monitors the air intake as it is mixed with fuel prior to being injected into the engine at low speeds and at idle. This valve is controlled by the vehicle’s computer and will adjust idle speed based upon other measurements such as engine temperature, intake air temperature and electrical system load or voltage. This is also an important function when starting the motor as it allows the motor to run and idle on it’s own once the motor fires. When you accelerate, the engine RPM increases, and as you let off the gas, the RPM slowly returns to the normal idling speed with the help of the idle air control valve making the transition from a higher RPM back down to idle speed while adjusting the air/fuel ratio constantly to allow this to happen smoothly. When the engine RPM drops below the normal range of about ~800 RPM, this often times will cause the engine to stall indicating a dirty or faulty idle air control valve. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and inspect your vehicle.

I was stopped on the freeway, started to go about 5 mph, the car jerked and stop without warning like the wheels locked up.
ANSWER : Hi, thanks for writing in. I’d be happy to try to help. It is hard to definitively diagnose what the issue is. At first it seems like a transmission issue. Automatic transmissions are rather complicated and can do strange things when they malfunction. If not an issue with the transmission, you could also have a clutch issue. Always start by checking the simple components first. Check your transmission fluid level. Make sure your transmission filter is clean and debris free. When you have the transmission pan off, you can look and see if there are any metal shavings at the bottom. There is often a small magnet at the bottom of the pan designed to gather any metal shavings for a quick diagnosis. This is a sign of more serious transmission problems. Unless you have experience with automatic transmissions, it is not recommended that major repairs be done at home. I suggest taking your car to a transmission specialist for help.

car is overheating and leaking water and anti freeze
ANSWER : Coolant leaks can occur because of cracked hoses, leaking gaskets, faulty water pumps, or damaged radiators. When the coolant level goes low, the engine will start to overheat due to the low coolant level. I would first recommend giving the cooling system a visual look over. If it is not obvious where the coolant leak is coming from, I would recommed having the cooling system pressure tested in order to determine the leak source. If you would like to have your cooling system pressure testedcoolant is leaking inspection, consider YourMechanic, as a certified technician can come to your home or office to inspect your cooling system.

I put the wrong key in my car and a few weeks later my car just shut down and it will not start I believe it’s the computer but…
ANSWER : Hi there. What had happened is the wrong key set the security to the vehicle. This is to prevent the vehicle from starting with the wrong keys. Try removing the battery cables (+) and (-) for 13 minutes. During that time, put the original key in the ignition and turn it on. Activate everything in the car even though there is no power. Then remove the key and hook up the battery cables. The computer should have reset and reset the security. If the security is still being tripped, then I recommend seeking out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you

My car stops when engine gets warm and while I am driving I stop on red light and car suddenly turn off and I have to hit starter
ANSWER : Hello, from what you’ve described it sounds like you are having several different issues. The starter should have nothing to do with it stalling, but it will have something to do with the car restarting if it doesn’t turn the engine well. The stalling can be from the distributor or possibly a computer sensor.

The scenario where you hit a car from behind may be from another problem, alongside with the idling of the engine. Without knowing the model and engine size of your car I can only say so much. I would suggest having a mechanic do a thorough check of the entire car to check the engine, brakes, and computer systems to see if the problems can be identified and repaired, or at the very least quoted.

When i have my car running with my heat or ac on my car hesitates like it wants to stop when i’m stopped at a light.
ANSWER : As you may know, your car’s AC system when working properly puts an extra load on the engine at all times when it is running. When this happens, your car’s computer makes adjustments to compensate for this extra load on the engine. There is a component in your engine’s intake system called an idle air control valve that helps to control air intake as it is mixed with fuel during idle or low speeds. When this is dirty or not working properly (especially under load from additional power required for the AC), tis may cause incorrect adjustments to be made to the fuel mixture causing the hesitation you describe. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your home to take a look at your car to properly diagnose and repair your idle air control valve.

I got gas the day after my car stopped moving after applying the brake at a stop sign. Now it wont drive 2008 Chevy Aveo
ANSWER : Hi – first thing to check is for proper transmission fluid level. If fluid level is correct, this may be a transmission failure (forward clutches). I would recommend a transmission inspection by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will come to your location, diagnose this problem, give you an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs.