When your car is running it's easy to think that it's fine to drive even if you notice something that seems to be in need of repair. While some minor repair work can often wait until you can afford to get it done or until you can get to a repair shop, there are some instances when you should never drive your car even if the engine is running.

This is for your own safety and to keep you from facing even larger repair bills in the future. Consider a few of those instances here:

1. When the brakes are squeaking or squealing

New brakes can sometimes squeak as they get accustomed to pressing against the car's rotor, and when brakes are very wet they may make a slight squeak or squeal when applied. However, if you notice a very obvious squeaking or squealing sound when you apply the brakes, this could be very serious.

Your brakes pads, the part that squeezes the car's rotors to get the tires to stop moving, can be worn and thin or you may have dirt and debris trapped inside the brake. In any case, they could easily fail while on the road so it's best to have them checked out immediately.

2. If you smell a sweet odor coming from the front of your car

Your car's coolant typically has a sweet odor when it gets warm, but you shouldn't smell it since it should always be contained in your radiator and within the cooling system. If you can smell a sweet odor and especially if it seems warm to you, chances are you have a radiator leak.

Driving your car with this can cause the coolant to leak out entirely and in turn, your engine can easily overheat and be damaged beyond repair. Your radiator also operates under an amount of pressure and a small leak can become a full-blown hole in the radiator so that it too needs to be replaced. Both repairs are extremely expensive and best avoided if possible, so have the smell checked out as soon as you notice it.

3. When you can smell gasoline from inside your car

If you notice the very obvious smell of gasoline from inside your car, you may have a leak somewhere in the fuel tank or fuel lines. In turn your car is filling up with fumes from the gas itself. This is not something to ignore as the gasoline could ignite, and breathing those fumes is very dangerous to your health. Take your car in to be inspected so you can determine the cause and have it repaired as quickly as possible.

To learn more, contact a company like Byrd Automotive Repair LLC with any questions you might have,