A mark of sophistication and style, the Mini brand has a devoted legion of drivers. As a Mini owner, you can depend on your compact and sleek Mini’s high-caliber performance out on the road. But while Mini’s are a highly reputable and reliable European line of vehicles, they are not an exception from the occasional problem that any vehicle faces from time to time. One of such problems is a leaking thermostat, which is a problem no Mini driver wants to be inconvenienced with. Let’s discuss the role of your Mini’s thermostat, the causes of thermostat leaks, symptoms of leaks, and where to go to fix your leaking thermostat.
The Role of Your Mini’s Thermostat
Consisting of a small cylinder and made from metal or high-quality plastic, your vehicle’s thermostat is responsible for monitoring the temperature in the engine and is a preventative measure against overheating and the problems that arise along with it. Allowing the engine to warm up as quickly as possible, the thermostat helps reduce wear and tear on the engine, including the prevention of engine sludge, deposits, and the releasing of unnecessary emissions. The thermostat also blocks the flow of coolant to the radiator when the engine temperature is cold.
As the temperature in the engine rises, the thermostat begins to open and stays open, once the engine reaches around 200 degrees.
Causes of Thermostat Leaks
Below are the common causes of thermostat leaks:
- Extreme Temperatures: Thermostats are made from metal or high-quality plastic and built to last a long time, but unfortunately, exposure to extreme climates can cause coolant to leak from your thermostat.
- Damaged Thermostat Housing: Another common cause of thermostat leaks is a damaged thermostat housing. Should your thermostat housing become warped, cracked, or otherwise damaged, this can lead to coolant leakage.
- Wear-and-Tear on Plastic Fittings: Modern vehicles also carry plastic fittings that hold hot coolant and can succumb to wear-and-tear over time, leading to coolant leakage.
- Coolant Surge Tank Leaks: Coolant surge tanks can also succumb to wear over time and may need to be replaced to avoid further leakage.
Signs of Thermostat Leaks
The below are signs of thermostat leaks. Should you encounter any of these signs, do not ignore them. Call your trusted Mini service and repair center immediately to schedule an appointment to have your vehicle seen.
- Check Engine Light Illuminates: Your check engine light may illuminate if you have a leaking thermostat, if your engine overheats, or if thermostat performance issue trouble codes are logged.
- Visible Leakage Underneath Your Car: One of the more obvious signs of thermostat coolant leakage, you may pull out of your driveway and notice puddles from underneath where your car was parked due to thermostat leakage.
- Low Coolant Warning Light Illuminates: When your thermostat leaks coolant, it can drop your coolant level below normal range at an alarming rate, often triggering the low coolant warning light on your dashboard.
- Inoperative Heater: As your vehicle’s heater relies on hot engine coolant to blow heat into the cabin, an inoperative heater could be due to a thermostat leak.
- OBD Codes: If your engine throws P0128 or P0125 OBD codes, it is running too cold and can cause engine sludge to develop, which ultimately can lead to the destruction of your vehicle’s engine. A healthy engine runs around 200 degrees.
- Thermostat Valve Stuck Closed or Open: If your thermostat’s valve is stuck closed, you risk damaging the components of your engine due to a higher-than-normal temperature. When the thermostat valve is stuck open, which is usually due to a malfunction, the coolant leak can cause serious damage to your engine.
EuroService Automotive Can Help
If your thermostat is leaking coolant, it’s crucial to fix the problem as soon as possible to avoid damage to your engine. EuroService Automotive are your European import experts proudly serving the Warrenton, Bristow, Gainesville, Haymarket, and Manassas, Virginia communities, and we can fix your Mini’s leaky thermostat. Our staff has the expertise and top-notch customer care you require, with years of experience working with the Mini brand. You’ll wonder why you didn’t check us out sooner. Call us today to schedule your appointment and we’ll have your Mini as good as new and back on the road before you know it.