Q: Car overheated and battery light came on, now car won't start.

asked by on

I was driving to work and heard a sound like gravel being turned for about 20-30 seconds. Shortly after that my battery light came on and the temperature of the engine started to go up very quickly. The clock and heat went out as well, though the headlights and radio stayed on. I checked under the hood after I got to work and the vehicle had time to cool off. The coolant top had popped off and all the coolant was gone. I went to to start my car later and it wouldn't turn on, however, the battery light was still on.

It sounds like you have had a failure of one of the belt driven accessories under your hood. The pulleys attached to you engine have bearing in them so they can spin freely. When one of these bearings fail you can hear a sound of gravel being turned as you described. It is then possible that the belt could be damaged to the point where it slips off or breaks. This will cause your water pump to stop circulating coolant in your engine which could cause it to overheat and blow off your radiator cap. It will cause your alternator to stop charging your battery so you could lose electrical power and turn the battery light on. I would ask for help from a mechanic to check your serpentine belt system for any issues and make the necessary repairs.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Car overheated and battery light came on, now car won't start.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: I drove through a puddle and my car won't start.

Hello, thank you for writing in. The crankshaft position sensor would cause the vehicle not to start if there was an issue with it. With that being said, there may be a variety of other issues due to the water...

Q: Electrical problems with speedometer, lights and tachometer on 2011 Mini Cooper Countryman

Hello. Yes it is likely that there was a fuse blown when installing the battery. The fuses that are of the most likely concern are F21,F40, F9, and F5. I recommend checking the wiring under those fuses as well. It...

Q: No heat in car and engine light on for overheating

Hi There, Your heating issue may be due to a faulty heater blower motor or potentially a bad heater core. As you may know, the heater core is a small radiator like unit that circulates the hot coolant from the...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...