What is a heater core, and how does it go bad? And what kind of signs show that your vehicle’s heater core may be not working properly? Start preventative care now, so you don’t have to have a costly heater core repair down the road! Find out in this article all the answers to solve your car’s heater core issues. Save money by gaining knowledge with these helpful car tips and advice about a bad heater core.

What is a heater core anyway?

A heater core is very important because it allows your hot coolant from your engine to circulate through the passenger cabin, which allows your heater to get hot air. A bad heater core is a bigger issue to come across in the cold, winter months, especially if you’re dealing with freezing temperature climates.

The purpose of your heater core is to disperse heat and let your heater and defroster function well. The heater core is usually located right behind your car’s dashboard and is usually a tricky place to get to. This is why repair costs can be much higher than a normal repair if you are going to your local automotive repair shop.

How does a heater core go bad?

There are multiple reasons a car’s heater core could not be working properly. One reason could be due to clogging, as the coolant could become contaminated if it’s not regularly flushed out. Another reason for a bad heater core could be because of a leak somewhere in the system. Find a local car repair shop to properly diagnose your car issues to be safe.

What are the signs of a bad heater core?

Here are the most common signs that your heater core is going bad and things to look out for in the future:

  1. A sweet smell inside of your car.

-If you smell a very strong, sweet smell inside of your vehicle, this is a sure sign that you have coolant or some sort of fluid leaking. If you smell the sweet smell on the outside of your vehicle, check to see if you have a leak going on under your car.

  1. There is little or NO heat coming out.

-A lack of heat could be a sure sign that your heater core is bad. There could be a slight chance that your blower motor has failed. Still get it checked by the professionals to be sure.

  1. Your car is going through coolant fast.

-If your car is constantly running out of fluid, you most definitely have a heater core issue at hand. You may not be able to find the leak due to the coolant getting out when the car system is cold and leaks from your cabin.

  1. Your car is fogged up.

-The most common sign that you have a bad heater core is when the inside of your car is fogged up! You want to make sure to get your car looked at right away as this chemical, ethylene glycol, leaking is harmful to your health. If you are driving and this happens, make sure to roll down your windows and to get it repaired the same day.

  1. Your car is overheating.

Lastly, a sure sign of a bad heater core is when your vehicle overheats. This could be due to a blown head gasket or a plugged heater core issue. Do not drive your vehicle if it continues to overheat, and make sure to bring it in to your local automotive repair shop as soon as possible!

We hope these tips on what causes a bad heater core have given you some knowledge on the topic and help you start to take preventative actions to avoid these issues!

Find us and like us on Facebook here!