In general, the parts to prevent overheating are less expensive than fixing the damage overheating has done. There are exceptions to this rule, of course, but prevention is almost always better than cleaning up the mess afterward. Have no doubt; damage due to overheating can be messy, often with antifreeze creating the destruction.
Cracked Head Gasket
A head gasket prevents antifreeze from leaking. When it’s cracked, antifreeze is free to wreak devastation on the engine it’s supposed to keep cool. This is just one problem that can occur should a head gasket break, though. While head gaskets aren’t expensive, replacing them is time intensive and generally not something a frugal person wants to pay for in labor fees.
Cylinders are part of a car’s engine. They’re metal tubes in which pistons move through. If antifreeze leaks into a cylinder, its walls can degrade and warp. Cylinders are incredibly important; they’re fixable when they break, but it’s often not worth the money involved. Some mechanics recommend replacing the entire engine if a cylinder “dies,” especially in older cars where the driver could easily spend more money than the car is worth.