Q: Overheated after an oil change.

asked by on

I had my oil changed and car checked at a local Midas shop. I've had a transmission code for a while, but it's never been a major problem. They also said that I had a thermostat code and that I have to replace it. At first I didn't agree, because I've never had overheating or cooling problems, but it was the cheapest option of all suggestions, so I agreed anyway. The suggested repairs were only things of the suspension system. The check page also said everything is ok. I headed straight to LA and 2-3 hours later I stopped for gas. The car has been parked for not more than 15 mins. I left the gas station and less 8 miles after, the car overheated and started smoking. I stopped and opened the hood. The oil cap was missing and the oil was all over the engine. I checked the dipstick there was no oil on it at all. There was coolant everywhere as well. I had a good running car and 2 hours after the shop it broke down. What do you think was the initial trigger? Thank you for your time!

My car has 230000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

It sounds like the technician did not bleed the cooling system properly allowing an air pocket to remain in the system. When the air pocket settles after sitting it typically raises to the top near the coolant temperature sensor. Since air will heat up and expand more than coolant, once it hits the sensor, it will max out the gauge and create excessive pressure in the cooling system.

Midas is a national franchise and can bill other shops for warranty repairs. You can find the nearest location and call them for a resolution (or the original store).

With the vehicle cold, the radiator needs to be filled with a 50/50 coolant to water solution and then pressure tested for leaks. Chances are you will need to add up to half a gallon or more. The pressure test requires a special tool.

The oil cap obviously was left loose or off. The engine compartment needs to be washed and oil topped off.

It’s more likely that this was two individual problems caused by the same mechanic, rather than one problem that caused both issues. The thermostat code was just likely a computer monitored condition for early detection of a slow operating thermostat. It didn’t necessarily mean it failed, rather that it may have soon.

The company should take care of everything for you. If you are far away, you should request they pay for towing.

The next time your vehicle needs work, you should consider contacting a competent, qualified professional that won’t do this to your car, such as one from YourMechanic.

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. Overheated after an oil change.

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 have a 2008 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS V6 Automatic 6 Speed with a 105,000 miles. It has never had its transmission fluid changed.

Changing the oil will not hurt the transmission as long as the fluid is red in color. If the fluid has never been changed, I recommend replacing the oil pan gasket and transmission filter with servicing the oil from the...

Q: Brakes are failing no fluid leaks at all and brake fluid resevoir still full

An internal seal failure in the master cylinder is possible and that is easily tested for by either blocking off the master cylinder ports and/or using pressure gauges to measure pressure developed within the system upon pedal application. It is...

Q: Wired radio while driving car shut down

The cause of this malfunction is undoubtedly electrical in nature and perhaps includes blown fuses. Regardless of the underlying cause, if you request a no start diagnostic the responding certified mechanic will get the problem diagnosed and repaired for you...

Related articles

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...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.