4 Reasons Car Heaters Fail

Making sure your vehicle produces sufficient heat is important not only for winter comfort, but for safe driving.

A broken heating system can be downright dangerous, should you be stranded in the cold. It can also render your defroster ineffective, creating a driving hazard.

Highly rated auto service providers tell our research team that, unlike a house, vehicles don’t have a central heater. Instead, a car’s heating system is essentially a combination of components.

The heat that warms you in the cabin originates with the engine’s coolant system. Once the engine reaches its operating temperature — controlled by the thermostat — it heats the mixture of coolant and water, passing it through hoses and valves and into the heater core, which resembles a miniature radiator.

A fan blows air over the heater core, pushing the warmed air through the cabin filter and into the cabin.

The fix for a heating problem will depend on its source. Auto experts tell us that these are common possible causes:

1. A cooling system leak that results in insufficient antifreeze and water in the radiator. A leak can be caused by something as simple as a loose hose clamp or it can be a sign of a more serious problem. Topping off the radiator fluid may help temporarily, but plan to have a coolant leak checked out. (Be aware that coolant in newer models may not require routine service until 60,000 to 100,000 miles.)

2. A faulty thermostat that doesn’t allow the engine to properly warm up.

3. A broken blower fan.

4. Coolant contaminated with rust particles or some other substance, creating a blockage that prevents the heating core from properly circulating air into the cabin.

Because several components comprise the heating system, it’s best to have a reputable auto mechanic diagnose and treat any problems.

Most heating-related repairs range in cost from $300 to $1,000, our research team learned, but an exact price can vary widely, because of the variety of issues that can create a heating problem.

To help ensure that your heating system performs when you need it most, have a mechanic regularly check the coolant level and other components, such as hoses and belts.


Blake’s Auto Body Will Remain Open

As many of you are aware the county of Marin and the county of Sonoma, as well as many surrounding counties, have requested all non-essential business to close. Auto repair is seen as an essential business, therefore Blake’s Auto Body will remain open. We are here to get you back in your vehicles as fast as possible so that you can go to doctor appointments, grocery stores, pharmacies and those who are still working your jobs.

Please feel free to call your local Blake’s Auto Body to get the most current information regarding a repair. Please remain safe and healthy during this time.

All the best,

Blake’s Auto Body