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Identifying Vehicle Fluid Leaks by Color: A Comprehensive Guide

Determining what's leaking from your vehicle based on the color of the fluid can be a helpful initial step in diagnosing potential issues. Here's a guide to common fluid colors and what they may indicate:

  1. Red or Pink Fluid:

    Transmission Fluid: Red or pink fluid leaking from the center or front of the vehicle could be transmission fluid. A transmission fluid leak can affect your vehicle's shifting and should be addressed promptly.

  2. Brown or Black Fluid:

    Engine Oil: Brown or black fluid is typically engine oil. It often appears near the front or center of the engine. An engine oil leak can lead to engine damage if not resolved.

  3. Yellow or Clear Fluid:

    Gasoline or Fuel: Yellow or clear fluid near the rear of the vehicle or along the fuel lines may indicate a gasoline or fuel leak. Fuel leaks pose a fire hazard and should be addressed immediately.

  4. Blue Fluid:

    Windshield Washer Fluid: Blue fluid is often windshield washer fluid. Leaks from the washer fluid reservoir or hoses are common and typically not as critical as other fluid leaks.

  5. Light Brown to Clear Fluid:

    Brake Fluid: Clear or light brown fluid around the wheels or under the brake master cylinder may indicate a brake fluid leak. Brake issues can compromise safety, so address this promptly.

  6. Green or Orange Fluid:

    Antifreeze/Coolant: Green or orange fluid, sometimes with a sweet smell, could be coolant. Leaks may occur in the radiator, hoses, or water pump. Overheating can result from a coolant leak.

  7. Light Red or Light Brown Fluid:

    Power Steering Fluid: Light red or light brown fluid may be power steering fluid. Leaks in the power steering system can make steering more difficult and should be repaired.

  8. Dark Red or Brown Fluid with a Burnt Smell:

    Differential Fluid or Gear Oil: Dark red or brown fluid with a burnt smell may indicate a leak in the differential or gear oil system, typically found near the wheels. These leaks can affect your vehicle's drivability.

If you notice any fluid leaks, it's crucial to address them promptly to prevent further damage or safety hazards. Consider seeking professional assistance from Chapman Mobile Auto Glass experts for a thorough inspection and repair. Ignoring fluid leaks can lead to more extensive and costly problems down the road.