There are different types of fluids in your car engine, and each plays a specific role. Any of the fluids may leak, with varying repercussions on the engine's performance. It is essential that you determine what fluid is leaking from the color of the puddle. This helps you ascertain its type of damage to the car's engine. Here are some popular car fluid leaks and ways to identify them.
The coolant color may range from pink to orange or bright green. The color variation depends on the brand of antifreeze used. New models in the market do not spill coolant. Therefore, a puddle of the coolant might point to a crack in the cooling system. You need to have leakage fixed fast to prevent the engine from overheating.
Oil is usually amber to black, depending on the period it has been in the engine. The darker the color, the longer it has been in the engine. Therefore, a black or amber puddle may point to a leak at the oil pan or gaskets. Oil leaks are high localized, which makes them hard to locate. However, the first stop should always be the head gasket.
Transmission fluid is usually dark red, bright red, or pink. Therefore, if you find a puddle of this color, check the automatic transmission system. Unfortunately, transmission fluid may vary widely in color. This means that you may have to check other types of oils besides the transmission oil. However, if you estimate the location of the puddle to be just below the transmission system, it is undoubtedly a transmission fluid.
Differential fluid looks like transmission fluid in terms of color and consistency. However, it usually leaks near the rear end of the vehicle and not below the engine.
Gear oil is very viscous and leaks slowly. The point of leakage is usually at the gasket heads. Due to its viscosity, you may not find a puddle of oil but an unusual accumulation of dirt just below the vehicle. It tends to attract dirt, sticks, and dried leaves and has a distinct smell.
If you find a car leak that needs to be inspected, don't hesitate to bring your vehicle into the experts here at A-1 Auto Repair today!