Honda CR-V: Handling the Unexpected / Overheating

Honda CR-V 2017-2024 Owner's Manual / Handling the Unexpected / Overheating

How to Handle Overheating

Overheating symptoms are as follows:

  • The temperature gauge needle is at the Honda CR-V. Overheating mark or the engine suddenly loses power.
  • Stop Driving When Safe. Engine Temperature Too Hot message appears on the driver information interface.
  • Steam or spray comes out of the engine compartment.

First thing to do

  1. Immediately park the vehicle in a safe place.
  2. Turn off all accessories and turn on the hazard warning lights.

    No steam or spray present: Keep the engine running and open the hood.

    Steam or spray is present: Turn off the engine and wait until it subsides.

    Then open the hood.


Steam and spray from an overheated engine can seriously scald you.

Do not open the hood if steam is coming out.


Continuing to drive with the temperature gauge needle at the Honda CR-V. Overheating mark may damage the engine.

Continuing to drive with the Stop Driving When Safe. Engine Temperature Too Hot message on the driver information interface may damage the engine.

Next thing to do

  1. Check that the cooling fan is operating and stop the engine once the temperature gauge needle goes down.
    • If the cooling fan is not operating, immediately stop the engine.
  2. Once the engine has cooled down, inspect the coolant level, and check the cooling system components for leaks.
    • If the coolant level, in the reserve tank is low, or no coolant in the tank, check that the radiator is cool. Cover the reserve tank cap with a heavy cloth and open the cap. Add coolant until it reaches the MAX mark and put the cap back on.

Honda CR-V. Overheating

Last thing to do

Once the engine has cooled sufficiently, restart it, and check the temperature gauge.

If the temperature gauge needle has gone down, resume driving. If it has not gone down, contact a dealer for repairs.


Removing the reserve tank cap while the engine is hot can cause the coolant to spray out, seriously scalding you.

Always let the engine and radiator cool down before removing the reserve tank cap.

If the coolant is leaking, contact a dealer for repairs. Use water as an emergency/temporary measure only.

Have a dealer flush the system with proper antifreeze as soon as possible.

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