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Top 3 Signs You Need a Coolant Flush

The summer heat presents unique challenges to vehicles in the south. Thankfully, your vehicle has measures in place to keep your engine protected. This important task is largely placed on your engine’s cooling system and the antifreeze that keeps it running. It is essential to keep this coolant fresh with manufacturer-recommended coolant flushes. So how do you know if you need a coolant flush? Here are the top signs of this needed service, brought to you by the mechanics at Chapel Hill Tire.

Vehicle Overheating and High Temperature Gauge

The primary role that coolant plays in your vehicle’s functioning is keeping your engine temperatures low. If you find that your temperature gauge is always high and your engine is frequently overheating, chances are that you need a coolant flush. Allowing your engine to overheat can cause serious, costly problems, so it is best to visit a mechanic at the first signs of temperature issues. 

Sweet Maple Syrup Car Smell

One distinct sign of a needed coolant flush is an engine smell that may remind you of pancakes. Antifreeze contains ethylene glycol, which is known for its sweet-smelling properties. As your car burns through coolant, it can put off smells that drivers often compare to maple syrup or butterscotch. While the smell may be nice, it is a sign that your engine needs attention as it burns through your antifreeze.

Recommended Maintenance, Signs, and Symptoms

Beyond these two distinct signs that you need a coolant flush, other indicators tend to be more ambiguous, such as unusual engine noises. When you hear an engine noise or notice that something seems astray, it is essential to bring your vehicle in as soon as possible (or have a mechanic come to you). Other considerations to look for include:

  • Leaking Fluid – If your antifreeze is leaking, you may notice a blue or orange liquid beneath where you parked your vehicle. Without normal coolant levels, your engine will begin to quickly overheat. 
  • Seasonal Attention – Coolant issues can happen year-round; however, vehicle overheating is most common in warm months. You should make sure that your car is ready for summer with fresh coolant, oil, and other needed maintenance before your engine faces any risks.
  • Maintenance Schedule – When all else fails, check your owner’s manual for guidance. The care routine of your coolant can be impacted by the age, make, and model of your vehicle as well as your driving patterns, former care routines, the climate in your area, and other factors. This makes it essential to comprehensively care for your vehicle. 

If you are still unsure of whether or not you need a coolant flush, bring your vehicle to an expert for insight. A professional mechanic can advise you on whether or not this is the service for you. If you do need a coolant flush, a professional can complete it quickly and affordably. 

What is a Coolant Flush?

Simply adding more antifreeze to your engine might temporarily relieve coolant problems, but they will not solve the source of your issue. This is where a coolant flush can help. An expert will begin by ensuring that your coolant is not leaking. If there is a leak, they will need to first find and repair this issue. Once they confirm that there is not a larger problem with your system, they will remove all of the old, burnt antifreeze. 

Your mechanic will also use professional-grade solutions to eliminate any existing debris, dirt, sludge, rust, and buildup that your system may be holding. A mechanic will then finish the coolant flush by adding fresh antifreeze to your engine along with a conditioner that will keep it protected for longer. This process improves the health and protection of your vehicle, so you will likely notice an immediate boost in engine cooling and performance following this service.

Chapel Hill Tire Coolant Flush

If you need a coolant flush, the experts at Chapel Hill Tire are here for you. We proudly serve drivers in and around the Triangle with our eight trusted mechanic locations. You can find Chapel Hill Tire mechanics in Raleigh, Durham, Carrboro, and Chapel Hill. Our experts are well versed in the needs of vehicles of every brand, make, and model, including Toyota, Nissan, Honda, Audi, BMW, Subaru, Ford, Mitsubishi and many others. Make an appointment here online or call your nearest Chapel Hill Tire location to get started today!

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