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Q: Car is overheating and not sure why.

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I am not very car saavy so I mistakenly allowed my coolent to empty out completely which caused smoke to start coming from under the hood. I had a friend who knew a little about cars so he said I just needed coolent. I put coolent in and then it started working fine again but the next day while on my way to work the needle still was going all the way to and even past the red line for the temperture but no smoke or any other signs telling me it is overheating and it still runs even past the red line. I am not sure why else it would be overheating if I already put coolent. It has never had this issue before.

My car has 111000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The first thing you will need to know is that the coolant does not go low except for normal small amounts of less than a small cup a year. If you added more than a cup full then you have a leak in the cooling system somewhere. Now that you ran the engine hot until it smoked you may have caused major engine damage to the cylinder heads. You will need to have the cooling system diagnosed to find the leak and then see if engine damage happened from the overheating. If you would like, a certified technician from YourMechanic can come to your home or office, to inspect your vehicle and address the overheating issue.

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