Overheating and Engine Misfires

Common Car Engine Problems and How to Fix Them: Overheating and Engine Misfires

A vehicle’s engine is its beating heart. You can’t drive your car if the engine isn’t working. But occasionally, car drivers deal with issues with their engines like overheating, knocking, faulty batteries, and others that can happen to the best of us. It is critical to address these issues promptly in order to avoid major problems and expensive repairs and to keep your vehicle running smoothly. 

To deal with car engine problems effectively, you must first learn about the most common ones and how to fix them. And in this case, having access to reliable information is crucial. This is where Windstream’s services can be a valuable tool. With high-speed internet service, you can quickly access online resources about engine problems including troubleshooting guides, repair manuals, and videos.

Common Car Engine Problems and How to Fix Them: Overheating and Engine Misfires

You can also connect with technicians and other car enthusiasts to get advice and support.  Sounds perfect right? Call Windstream today to learn more about their superfast service and amazing deals.

In this article, we’ll explain two of the most common problems with car engines: overheating and engine misfiring, how to recognize them, and some fixes you can try.


One of the most common engine problems is overheating and it can happen from time to time. There are various reasons why your car engine might get overheated:

Causes of engine overheating

Low coolant level: A coolant within a reservoir within the engine compartment helps keep the engine temperature optimized. If you notice the engine overheating, check the coolant level as a low level could be the cause behind it.

Faulty radiator or thermostat: The car’s radiator assists in lowering the temperature of the coolant that has absorbed the heat from the engine, thereby preventing overheating. Likewise, a thermostat isolates the engine from the radiator until a certain minimum temperature is reached. If any of these components fail to function properly, the engine may overheat.

Symptoms of engine overheating

So how do you know if your car engine is overheated? Here are symptoms that can help you detect the issue:

Smoke or steam: The appearance of smoke or steam is one of the most obvious signs of engine overheating. When your engine overheats, a billowing steam plume will emerge from beneath your hood.

Thumping Noises: Another obvious sign of engine overheating is the thumping noises coming from the engine compartment. That is an indication that there is a possible issue with the radiator or the valve between the radiator and the coolant

Hot Hood: When you turn on your car, you expect the hood to be hot. However, if it becomes too hot, the engine might be overheated.

Low Engine Power: A faulty or overheated engine will not be able to propel your vehicle normally. So, if you notice your engine’s performance dropping, it could be due to engine overheating.

How to fix an overheated engine

Here are some ways you can try fixing an overheated car engine:

Turn off the air conditioner: Some vehicles have an air conditioner that uses energy from the engine. If you notice your engine overheating, start your car with the AC turned off to relieve some of the strain on the engine.

Allow the engine to cool: If you notice your engine overheating after a long drive, turn off your vehicle and wait for it to cool down.

Call for assistance: If you’ve tried all of the above methods and still can’t get your engine to cool down, seek professional help. 

Common Car Engine Problems and How to Fix Them: Overheating and Engine Misfires

2. Engine Misfires

Engine misfires occur when one or more of your cylinders remain unfired, resulting in inefficient combustion. It slows or makes your car’s acceleration rough. Engine misfires can be caused by a number of factors, including:

Causes of Engine Misfires

Fouled Spark plugs: Spark plugs provide the spark that ignites the fuel in your engine. If your vehicle’s spark plugs fail, the cylinders will not fire, resulting in an engine misfire.  

Poorly functioning ignition coil: Ignition coils convert the low-voltage output of a car’s battery into the high-voltage punch that fires the spark plugs in your engine. As a result, a faulty ignition coil can result in a faulty spark plug and cause an engine to misfire.

Vacuum leaks: An engine misfire can also be caused by a vacuum leak in the intake manifold gasket or a vacuum hose.

Symptoms of Engine Misfires

To know if your engine is misfiring, notice the signs for the following symptoms:

Black Exhaust: If you notice a cloud of thick black exhaust coming from your car, it is likely that it is misfiring. 

Slowed Acceleration: Engine misfires can cause slowed speeds, so if you notice your car not accelerating as swiftly as usual, an engine misfire could be the cause. 

Changed engine sound: If you notice that your engine is sounding strange, there is most likely a problem and an engine misfire is a possibility.

How to fix engine misfires

Here are some fixes for engine misfires:

Check the cylinders: When dealing with an engine misfire, you must first determine whether or not the cylinder is operational. You can use a diagnostic machine or manually remove the high-pressure lines from the spark plug. Note that this process is dangerous and if you are unsure about anything, you better seek professional help. 

Check for damaged spark plugs and wires: Damaged spark plugs and wires are one of the most common causes of engine misfires, so look for any damaged wires or see if the plug is black, burnt, or wet with gasoline, and replace any malfunctioning part.

Check for vacuum leaks: Examine your hood for signs of a vacuum leak. Start the engine and listen for a loud squeal. If you hear that, it might be a sign that there is a vacuum leak causing the engine to misfire.

To resolve this issue, use a spray bottle filled with liquid dish soap to locate the leak. Then, squirt dish soap all over the vacuum lines and intake manifold gasket. Check the PCV valve and see if there are any bubbles. If you notice4 any, that could be a crack or a vacuum leak. Now replace any broken part you find. 

Seek professional help: Engine misfires might not be easy to fix on your own so it is better to seek professional help if the above fixes don’t work. 


The engine is the most important component of any vehicle, and there are times when it does not start properly or something is wrong with it. Overheating and engine misfires are common causes in these cases, and if you suspect these are the issues, try the fixes listed above or seek professional assistance.

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