It never fails… the heat brings out the worst in the European car in Las Vegas. We see it every year. The top two things we run into during the rising temperatures are dead batteries and overheating cars. Tell me the temperatures are going up to 100 degrees and I am going to double up on our batteries and coolant supplies.
The makes we service: Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover, Mercedes, Porsche and Volkswagen, all have one thing in common when it comes to their batteries… heat kills! Before a battery goes dead in one of these vehicles, you may experience a low-voltage light or the vehicle may take a bit longer to start up in the morning. You may consult your auto care center to see where the voltage is on your battery and if it is holding a charge.
Services to replace the batteries are becoming more complicated. It is not the simple replacement in your own garage of removing positive and negative cables and replacing them to the new battery. In many of the European vehicles, the battery may be under the back seat or in the trunk. The battery needs to be registered to the vehicle, as well, in a sense being told it has a new battery to run all systems. This is done by laptop or scanners exclusive to each maker. These scanners communicate with the vehicle’s many computer modules informing them of the battery replacement.
Desert Heat Causing Temperature Gauges To Go Red
The other common weather issue we face every time the sun heats up the valley is overheating. The cooling systems in these vehicles have multiple components causing the vehicle to overheat in the Las Vegas sun. Audi and Volkswagen have thermostats that stick closed. BMW’s electronic water pump on their 3 or 5 series intermittently fail, causing their vehicles to overheat and shut down. BMW and Mercedes are also known for their coolant reservoir cracking in the dry heat of the desert. The heat also dries out the upper and lower radiator hoses. Dry rotting hoses lead to major coolant leaks.
When a car overheats, the temperature gauge will be in the red. It may cause the “check engine” light to come on and steam to rise from the hood of the car. The best advice is to safely pull over and turn off the vehicle. A tow truck can safely get your European vehicle to a specialized shop to assess the problem you are experiencing. Coolant leaks and overheating can cause major damage to your vehicle’s engine. Do not push the vehicle to drive another block when temperature gauge is in the red. Your repairs may become costly by attempting to make it to the next driveway.