Here Are Some of the More Common Causes of a Broken Car Heater

Reasons Why Your Car Heater Won't Work

Your car’s heating system is a collection of different components, sometimes making it difficult to diagnose a problem.

Reasons Why Your Car Heater Won’t Work

During the colder months of the year, nobody wants their car’s heat to stop working. Unfortunately, it does happen. There may be many reasons why your car heater won’t work, and that is why we generally recommend you schedule an appointment with a qualified service technician. If you’d like to look into the problem yourself, however, we can help.

Your vehicle’s heating system works by blowing air through the heater core and then out into the cabin of the vehicle, warming it up for passengers. The heater core is able to warm up this air through hot coolant from the engine. That’s the simple explanation, but as you’ll see, the heating system can be more complex.

In case your heater breaks, be sure to carry these items for a cold weather car emergency kit

Causes of a Broken Car Heater

mechanic fixing a car heaterSo why might your heater become broken or stop working? Here are some of the more common causes.

  1. Low coolant: This is a big one that is seen often. A low coolant level means the heater core isn’t getting the coolant it needs. Note: Wait for everything under the hood to cool down before checking the coolant level. Learn how coolant keeps your engine from overheating.
  2. Leak in the coolant system: This could be caused from anything from a leaky radiator cap to a loose hose clamp. Topping off your coolant could help for a while, but it’s a problem you will want to have investigated quickly.
  3. Thermostat problem: Problems with the thermostat could keep the coolant from warming up.
  4. Plugged heater core: Debris can build up in the heater core, blocking coolant flow. It may be possible to flush this out or it may require a replacement heater core.
  5. Faulty fan: Without a properly working fan, you won’t get the air you need. It could be busted or not blowing with enough force.

[Read more: Find out why your car rattles when coming to a stop]

As you can probably tell by now, attempting to find the reasons why your car’s heater won’t work can be a challenge. Since the vehicle’s heating system is made up of so many separate parts, it could take some time to diagnose the issue. Hopefully, your specific problem can be found within the above list of common causes, but if not, we recommend scheduling an appointment with a qualified automotive technician.