Why Does it Take my Car So Long to Warm Up?

By Product Expert | Posted in Service on Thursday, December 10th, 2020 at 8:57 pm
hand reaching for hvac controls in car dashboard

Have you ever encountered this? It’s cold outside, but you have to get in your car, and when you do, you turn the heat all the way up and turn the fans up to max and you wait. And you wait longer. And you keep waiting, and it never seems to get warm, not the way it should. If this sounds familiar, continue reading, because we might be able to help you find out what’s going on.

Reasons your Car Takes too Long to Warm Up

hand in front of air vent in car sunlight and shadow
set of car air vents with wood backing close up

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Your Car is Low on Coolant

Coolant is an essential fluid for your car. It’s just made of antifreeze and water, but it helps keep your engine safe from its own intense heat. The coolant doesn’t magically make your engine cold. Instead, it flows past your engine and absorbs some of that heat, and gets pumped away to cool off elsewhere before it returns to your engine for another pass. If your car is low on coolant, that heat never makes it to the fans in your ventilation system that blow the heat your way. Check your coolant levels if your car isn’t warming up very fast because if that’s the only issue, it’s an easy fix.

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Your Water Pump is Malfunctioning

Your coolant is moved around thanks to a component called a “water pump.” It’s called a water pump because the most basic coolant is water, but the coolant in your car should be mixed with antifreeze. If this pump isn’t working, your coolant will not move, and your heating system won’t feel like it’s working.

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Your Heater Core or Engine Thermostat is Malfunctioning

When you turn the heat on in your car, fans in your ventilation system blow the heat off your warmed coolant in the heater core. If the heater core is broken, or if the thermostat that measures how much heat is in the engine compartment, you are probably in for costly repairs. If the problem is with the thermostat, you will notice that your engine temperature gauge doesn’t rise after your car has been on for a while.

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