Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

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.

A: It sounds like the technician did not bleed...

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?

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

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: Starting issue

Hi there. It is possible; although highly unlikely, that during the replacement of the belts and pulley, the mechanic may have forgotten to install a battery or alternator charging wire; which could have caused the battery to drain to the...

Q: Power Steering noise.

After the power steering pressure hose was installed, was the system bled or purged of air? If there is air in the system, the power steering pump will be noisy and you may see aerated or bubbly fluid in the...

Q: B2278 code for 2008 Ford Escape

Hello - You are correct that the torque sensor, or rather a bad torque sensor signal, is the cause of this problem. There is, however, a Ford Recall (Recall 14V284000) for this problem, so you don't have to do anything...

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...
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...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...