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What is a cooling fan in a car?

The car radiator is an important part of your vehicle that keeps the engine from overheating. Heat is transported from the engine through a hose via coolant to the radiator. Here it gets cooled down by air before going back to the engine. The cooling air either gets in through the grill when driving or through the car cooling fan when you drive slowly or the car is stationary. 

The car fan is mounted on the radiator. There are two types of fans: one is electric and powered by the battery of your car and the other one is driven by the engine. An electric cooling fan works either with a thermostatic switch or through to the engine’s computer. The system remains the same however: the fan will switch on when the temperature of the coolant reaches a certain level and switche off automatically once it goes down again. By doing this the fan helps to keep your engine from overheating and is thus vital for its efficiency and longevity. 

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Why is my car cooling fan not working?

If your cooling fan comes on when your car is cold, the engine is overheating, or if the cooling fan stays on when your car is off there might a problem with your car fan. You may notice a yellow or red temperature icon on your dashboard, which indicates that either your coolant level is too low or that the engine is about to overheat. 
When the fan is at fault it usually comes down to a problem with its motor, the thermostatic switch, or the relay. There could be a broken fuse or issues with the wiring - both are minor issues that you can easily fix. If the temperature sensor in charge of transmitting information to the car’s ECU is broken, your cooling fan also won’t know when to turn on. 

If you notice that the fan’s blades aren’t moving and the fan won’t kick into action, there is a problem with the motor. Luckily the fan motor can also easily be serviced or replaced.

How to fix a cooling fan in a car?

If you are experiencing trouble with your cooling fan then you need to check out what is wrong. Driving around with a broken fan is not advisable as your engine might overheat and get seriously damaged - ultimately a much costlier repair than having to do a cooling fan repair on your car. 

If you are handy you can do preliminary checks yourself to find out where the damage is. Have a look at its motor first and if that is working, move on to your fan’s fuses, the temperature switch, and the relay.

If you are unsure how to access your cooling fan or how to do these checks then we recommend taking your car to a garage. Mechanics can easily determine what is wrong with your fan and advise you on the best plan of action. The sooner you take your car the better! Chances are you will only need to replace a part of your fan and not book a whole car cooling fan replacement. 

Either way, the experts at the garage can tell you what needs to be done. Request quotes beforehand on autobutler.co.uk and you can compare the car cooling fan replacement cost from various garages near you. 

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Prices on engine repairs

The average prices and savings for the car brands shown are based on different models and years. You must therefore create a job and compare quotes to see your actual price and savings.
Make Save on average*
Audi
5.0
(6)
£139 / 25%
BMW
3.7
(3)
£139 / 28%
Citroën
5.0
(1)
£172 / 23%
Ford
4.7
(10)
£152 / 24%
Mercedes-Benz
4.8
(4)
£135 / 24%
Mini
3.7
(3)
£173 / 30%
Peugeot
4.5
(8)
£154 / 25%
Renault
5.0
(1)
£183 / 24%
Vauxhall
5.0
(14)
£138 / 25%
Volkswagen
4.8
(8)
£156 / 26%

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7 months
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Ford EcoSport (2019)

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