Should My Car’s Thermostat Be Changed?

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Triangle Radiator & Auto Service – Should My Car’s Thermostat Be Changed?

The role of your car or truck’s thermostat is to prevent its engine from overheating. Unless an engine overheats or is not able to attain standard operating temperature after driving for a few miles, the thermostat is probably functioning properly.

Should My Car's Thermostat Be Changed

What a Thermostat Does

Your vehicle’s thermostat is a very important component that is actually quite simple. It is a basic valve found in your vehicle’s cooling system. Its single task is to regulate how much coolant recirculates back into the engine. This helps to ensure that the coolant in the engine keeps within a particular temperature range regardless of the outside temperature.

When to Replace Your Car or Truck’s Thermostat

Since they’re such a basic device, thermostats typically don’t “go bad” over time. However, if you’re having other coolant system maintenance done at our shop, it could be a wise decision to replace the thermostat.

Besides this kind of preventive maintenance, this does not usually need to get replaced unless it stops closing and opening correctly. If it gets stuck in the closed position, coolant gets trapped coolant inside the engine and becomes overheated. If it gets stuck in the open position, the coolant will keep circulating through the engine and radiator, preventing the engine from getting to its operating temperature and its best efficiency.

Among the indicators that this isn’t functioning correctly are an engine that runs hotter than usual, or a car interior heater that does not generate enough warm air. A defective unit could also set off the check engine light. Since these signs can be attributable to other engine problems, the cooling system should in most cases be assessed by our mechanics before a decision is made to put in a new unit.

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