HEAT vs. CARS: Mechanics warn against waiting - New York News

HEAT vs. CARS: Mechanics warn against waiting

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CHASKA, Minn. (KMSP) -

The hot temperatures have certainly taken a toll on many Minnesotans, but it's also causing problems for their cars. FOX 9 News got some tips from mechanics on how to weather the next heat wave.

On a day when the temperatures top 90 and the heat index is flirting with the triple digits, no one wants to be stuck on the side of the highway with an overheated engine.

"It's definitely been a problem the last couple of days because it's been so hot," Hollie Edlund told FOX 9 News.

Edlund and her husband, Isaac, pulled over, turned off the air conditioner and hoped their engine would cool down.

"It's frustrating because it's so hot in the car," Isaac Edlund admitted.

Yet, Hollie Edlund admitted she didn't plan on taking the car in for a check-up.

"Elaine just needs to cool down a little bit," she said. "Elaine, the car."

Mechanics like Gary Goeman say a lot of people assume a problem on a hot day will go away once the temperatures drop again, but that's not always the case.

"A lot of people can make problems worse by ignoring problems on these hot days," he warned.

That can be a costly mistake, because it could lead to more damage -- and more dollars spent at the shop -- than getting the original problem fixed.

"The phone rings off the hook on days like this," Goeman said.

Goeman owns Auto Pros in Chaska, and he said business gets a 25-30 percent boost when the temperatures top the 90s.

"The heat puts a lot more stress on water pumps, on the whole cooling system," he explained.

When air conditioning stops kicking out cool air, many motorists first assume they are low on Freon -- but Goeman says that might not be the case.

"A lot of times, the cooling fins on the radiator or AC condenser are plugged with seeds, lint, debris, dirt, mud and need to be flushed out," he said.

Although the forecast predicts a cooler couple of days coming up, there's a lot of summer left on the calendar. To avoid getting caught on the curb, Goeman recommends checking to ensure fluids are full, the battery is in good shape, and tires get topped off.

"Heat is a different animal," he said. "It affects different parts of the car."

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