Noticing a leak coming from underneath your vehicle can be worrisome. As soon as you see a leak, be sure to inspect the liquid to determine its color and where it is coming from. Fluid leaking from your car could mean a variety of different things, and the color of the liquid is usually an accurate indicator of where that leak is coming from.
Here are some of the colors to look out for if you notice a leak:
Red - Red fluid usually points to a transmission or power steering system leak. This can stem from a broken transmission seal or a hole in a line between systems.
Orange - Orange liquid can be tricky. The orange color can actually indicate leaking antifreeze or just regular condensation that is rusty from the radiator. Transmission fluid can also look orange particularly if the fluid is old.
Yellow - Yellow fluid is a sign of a radiator coolant leak. This can begin to leak if there is a loose hose clamp or a damaged o-ring.
Green - Green fluid leaking can point to an antifreeze leak. Antifreeze can start to leak when certain hoses, fittings, or clamps have worn out or aren’t working properly.
Blue - Blue indicates that your windshield wiper fluid is leaking. With time, the fluid reservoir and tubing that carries this fluid can wear out and corrode, eventually leading to leaks.
Clear - If the liquid doesn’t have a color, then this is just condensation from your air conditioning system and is nothing to worry about.
Dark Brown - Dark brown fluid can be caused by a number of components. Old motor oil can appear dark brown and thick. However, brake fluid can also appear to be dark brown. Either of these are major leaks and need to be fixed as soon as possible.
Light Brown - Light brown fluid is usually new motor oil or gear lubricant. A bad smell can point to gear lubricant.
Pink - Pink fluid is usually a leak stemming from the power steering fluid or transmission fluid. These leaks are usually from a worn seal or a hole in the return line.
Once you’ve noted the color and the general area of where the leak is coming from, it’s time to have your vehicle inspected. Don’t ignore a leak coming from underneath your vehicle. A leak in the brake fluid or engine fluid can be dangerous, not only to the health of your vehicle but to you and your family’s safety on the road.
If you notice a leak underneath your car, come by the experts here at Autoworks of Issaquah today!