Q: Loss of power, likes to run hot and occassionally get close to overheating

asked by on

Before a cross-country road trip, changed radiator fan and motor mount but left cracked radiator alone until it failed on the road / overheated with lots of smoke. Changed radiator, still overheating. Changed thermostat, still overheating. Finally car started losing power and now wondering if it's the water pump or did the overheating (almost went to the "H" many times); cause permanent damage? Why wouldn't 4 different mechanics recommend changing the water pump from the beginning?

My car has 108000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Most importantly, you need to understand, that when the engine overheats and the coolant level gets low, the sensor that relays the temperature to the gauge is reading the temperature of the air in the engine. The sensor normally reads the coolant temperature, but when the coolant level is too low, it gets its its temperature signal from the air instead. The air temperature will typically much lower than that of the coolant, and therefore, the actual coolant temperature can be much higher.

Repeatedly overheating the engine can cause serious engine damage, such as a warped cylinder head, blown head gasket, or any of several other possible issues. It would be best to have a certified mechanic, such as those available at YourMechanic, do some diagnostics to identify why the vehicle is still overheating and make the repairs that are necessary.

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. Loss of power, likes to run hot and occassionally get close to overheating

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: Car won't accelerate when I press the gas pedal.

The lack of acceleration or starting may be caused by many different things, but may be a sign of a failing throttle position sensor. The throttle position sensor (TPS) is a sensor used to monitor the throttle position of the...

Q: What does it mean that my rotors are glazed? Is there anything I should do?

Usually when someone says the rotors are glazed, they mean that the surface has acquired a high polish form long term use. Sometimes this might lead to brakes that screech when you are coming to a stop. If that is...

Q: Power cutting off, then come back with the alarm going off

Hello. There are a couple of causes that come to mind in this case. Battery cables, electrical system grounds or the electrical control unit (ECU) all come to mind as possibilities. It is safe to say a vehicle that...

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 Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...