Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: My car is overheating. I have to run the heater to keep the temperature gauge on the half mark.

asked by on

My car overheats when its running. If my car is idling it doesn't overheat. To keep the car cooled down I have to run my heater all the way all the time. I've never seen steam or heard noises coming from the engine. I also don't have any air conditioning when I run the a.c.

My car has 185765 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi - there are a couple of possibilities for your overheating situation. The thermostat may not be opening properly, preventing hot water from circulating to and cooling in the radiator. The water pump may be failing and can’t circulate enough hot water through the radiator. If the head gasket on the engine has failed, combustion gases from one or more cylinders "superheat" engine coolant very quickly.

If the coolant level is low, and there are air pockets in the engine, the coolant is literally "boiled away" inside the engine, creating far higher temperatures than a "full of coolant" engine. I would recommend having your car inspected by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, to determine why the car is overheating.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  • Home
  • Questions
  • My car is overheating. I have to run the heater to keep the temperature gauge on the half mark.

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: Speedometer Working only after cold starts and Stops working after temperature increases and drops to zero and stays there

Hello, thank you for writing in. The vehicle is likely going to have an issue with the vehicle speed sensor or the wiring between these components. Both of them can be tested. The vehicle speed sensor is responsible for passing/generating...

Q: Jerky Engine Symptoms...

Hi there. It's quite possible that the fuel pump pickup is clogged with debris or wearing out, if these symptoms happen when there is less than 1/4 tank of gasoline. It's always a good idea to not run the vehicle...

Q: Overheating problem

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 1991 Oldsmobile Cutlass Calais. With the other items replaced and a continued overheating situation, you may want to consider replacing the coolant water pump. Any time a vehicle overheats, it is a...

Related articles

P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
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...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...