How to Fix It When Your Car Heater Isn’t Working
There are few things more frustrating than jumping into your car on a cold winter morning and turning on the heater, only to find out that it isn’t working properly. This can be a serious problem, as driving in cold weather without heat can be uncomfortable at best and dangerous at worst. However, before you panic and take your car to the shop, there are a few things you can do to try to fix the problem yourself.
Check the Coolant
One of the most common reasons for a car heater to stop working is a lack of coolant in the engine. In this case, the heater won’t be able to warm up the air that’s passing over it, no matter how high you turn up the heat. To check the coolant level, first, make sure the engine is cold, then locate the coolant reservoir under the hood. It’s usually a large plastic tank with a cap labeled “coolant”. Make sure the coolant level is between the “minimum” and “maximum” lines on the tank. If it’s low, add more coolant and see if that fixes the problem.
Check the Thermostat
If the coolant level is fine, the next thing to check is the thermostat. This is a small valve that opens and closes to regulate the flow of coolant through the engine. If the thermostat is stuck closed, the coolant won’t be able to circulate properly, which will prevent the heater from working. To check the thermostat, start the engine and let it warm up. Then, feel the radiator hose—the one that connects the radiator to the engine. If it’s not getting hot, the thermostat is likely stuck closed and needs to be replaced.
Check the Heater Core
If the coolant level and thermostat aren’t the problem, there’s a good chance that the issue is with the heater core itself. The heater core is a small radiator located inside the dashboard that is responsible for heating the air that comes out of your car’s vents. If the heater core is clogged or damaged, it won’t be able to warm up the air, and your heater won’t work. To check the heater core, you’ll need to take the dashboard apart, which can be a tricky job. It’s best to leave this one to the professionals.
In conclusion, a car heater that isn’t working properly can be a frustrating problem, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll need to shell out big bucks for repairs. By checking the coolant level, thermostat, and heater core, you can identify the issue and either fix it yourself or take your car to a mechanic for repairs. Of course, if your heater has stopped working, it’s important to get it fixed as soon as possible to avoid any safety hazards on the road. Stay warm!