Q: Engine gets hotter sitting in traffic - 2007 Chevrolet Malibu

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my temperature gauge runs a little above half while I'm sitting in traffic but as soon as I get back on the highway and get it steady flow the temperature will drop down to half. I see no leaks under the car no steam coming from the engine or loud squealing noises from the water pump. is it safe to drive from California to Washington? Thank you very much

My car has 146000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi there. This could be normal operation, but the cooling fans could be starting to have issues. Perform a visual inspection of the cooling fans to make sure when they come on that they operate properly; they should move a lot of air and not spin slowly. If the fans operate normally, then all should be ok.

However, I strongly suggest having a qualified technician, such as one from YourMechanic, come to your location to perform an inspection on the vehicle prior to the trip to avoid unexpected surprises such as overheating.

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