Finding a puddle beneath your car can be scary. For many people, the first step is to grab a flashlight and try to pinpoint the source of the leak, but this can be highly inaccurate. Leaking fluid can change directions many times as it makes its way out of your vehicle, so where it is dripping from does not necessarily indicate the source. It is much simpler and easier to identify the leak by its color and thickness instead.
Bright and slimy: Slimy yellow, pink, or other brightly colored fluid is engine coolant.
Clear to brown and very slick: This is brake fluid, which gets darker as it ages.
Reddish to light brown and thin: This could be either transmission fluid or power steering fluid, depending on the location. Near the center of your car, it’s transmission fluid. Near the front, it’s power steering fluid.
Dark brown and thick: This could also be transmission fluid, especially in an older car.
Light brown to black and oily: This is motor oil. A small drip is common, but it should be investigated before it gets worse.
Clear and watery: Clear, watery drips are extremely common. This is actual water, caused by the condensation that builds up on the car’s air conditioning system. It is completely normal.
If you are tired of getting the runaround and being treated like you haven’t got a clue, we invite you to try Colchin Automotive instead. Give us a call at 303-431-5421 for all of your automotive needs!