Overheating is one of the most common problems car owners experience, although many don’t recognize what’s happening until after they’re at the mechanic. By learning more about this problem, you can better determine when it’s time to see a professional rather than wait to see if the problem improves. With this issue, in particular, it’s crucial to visit a mechanic as soon as you notice any of the issues below.

1. Smell From Engine
If there is an unusual smell coming from your engine, don’t assume this is from pollution or driving too long. The odd smell you’re detecting is actually from the rubber gaskets, seals, and other pieces of plastic as they heat up. This is a very common sign of overheating that should be addressed as soon as possible.

2. Temperature Light is On
If the temperature light on the control panel is on or the gauge is not in normal range, this is a sign that the operating temperature of the car is too high. Don’t ignore this, especially if the gauge is in the red.

3. Ticking Noise
This noise is the result of the oil in the engine heating up and becoming so thin that it doesn’t properly protect the moving parts within the vehicle. By the time you hear this noise, there is already a problem, as this means that the necessary lubrication is not being presented where it’s needed.

4. Steam in the Hood
Perhaps one of the most stressful signs of overheating is the one that you can see: steam coming from the engine. This is caused by boiling coolant, which produces steam that eventually pushes out of the hood. If you notice this, you should shut off your engine immediately to avoid excess damage.

5. Your Engine is Slowing
When your the engine in your car overheats, the pistons will expand and eventually cause the crankshaft rotation to slow. This will reduce your driving speed, which will easily become apparent if you’re not able to keep up with traffic as normal. Normally this sign of trouble is accompanied by a strange smell and noises coming from the enginecar overheating cotes.