When you’ve experienced driving in cold temperatures, you would know the importance of having a functioning car heater. It is a crucial component in keeping you warm inside your vehicle. While it may not be part of your regular car maintenance routine, you still need to pay attention to it from time to time. After all, if there are minor issues that you do not address immediately, they might end up needing expensive repairs or replacements.
So, what are the common issues you might encounter in your car’s heating system? In this post, we are going to discuss them. You can use DIY repair methods on some of them. On the other hand, some issues may require professional assistance.
1) Malfunctioning Thermostat
The primary function of the thermostat is to control the coolant circulation in the engine. During the first minutes of the engine’s operations, the thermostat should stop the coolant circulation, allowing it to heat up quickly. Consequently, the engine and its components will warm up faster. The thermostat lets the coolant circulate through the engine once it reaches a preset temperature. When a thermostat starts to malfunction, it won’t hold back the coolant. So, it will take a longer amount of time before the heated air can be distributed inside the cabin.
2) Failing Heater Core
Most of the time, when a heater core starts to fail, the issue has something to do with leaks. A leaking heater core cannot provide sufficient heat. Moreover, it causes the coolant to seep into the vehicle’s cabin. So, if you notice that the coolant starts to pool on the floorboard, then it is probably time to replace the heater core.
3) Damaged Heater Hose
The heater hose is responsible for transporting the heated coolant to and from the heater core. So, if it gets damaged or when it starts to leak, the core will not receive sufficient heated coolant. As such, the core will fail to provide warm air inside the cabin.
4) Malfunctioning Fan Motor
The fan motor is responsible for blowing air over the heater core, allowing the conditioned air to flow throughout the ductwork of the car. Usually, there are two reasons why the fan motor starts to fail. In some cases, it has something to do with a burnt fuse in the fan blower circuitry. In other cases, the fan itself is already fried, requiring replacement.
To know the exact reason why your heating system does not blow air at all, you can get some basic diagnostic tools. Access the fan motor, then check whether it is receiving power. If it is, then you can conclude that the blower motor is burnt.
5) Insufficient Coolant
Your car’s heating system will not function properly if the coolant levels are too low. If there is a coolant shortage within the system, there won’t be enough fluid to heat the heater core. Keep in mind that if you do not address this problem, it might lead to a host of other issues. So, it is essential that you maintain the coolant levels to the recommended amount. From time to time, you should also flush the coolant to prolong the life of your vehicle’s heating components.
If the issue is as minor as insufficient coolant levels or a dirty blower, then you can perform a DIY repair on your car’s heating system. However, if it gets more complicated, and you need to replace certain components, then you should bring your car to an experienced technician. They should be able to diagnose the issue accurately and perform the repairs promptly.