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How Many Times Can An Engine Overheat?

The number of times that an engine can overheat depends on a few factors. If you’re driving in stop-and-go traffic, for example, the engine will run for longer periods and get hotter than if you’re cruising along a highway at a steady speed.

Other factors include:

How much work the engine has to do. An engine that’s working hard will heat up more than one that’s not. A vehicle with a heavy load or pulling a trailer, for example, would have to work harder than one without any extra weight.

How well your cooling system is working. Coolant leaks, plugged radiator fins and worn hoses all reduce the flow of coolant through the system. The result is more work (and more heat) for the engine.

How often you drive in hot weather conditions with your air conditioning on full blast (if equipped). That’s because A/C adds extra load to an engine by increasing both its internal friction and its drag on the vehicle as it moves down the road at high speeds.

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Last modified: November 5, 2022

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