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What Are the Different Types of Fluid Leaks?

Your vehicle relies heavily on multiple fluids to keep its engine, and other systems cooled, powered, and lubricated. Over time, you may find some of these fluids in a puddle underneath your car. When this happens, you've discovered a fluid leak. Some liquid leaks require immediate attention and repairs, while others aren't as severe. We'll go over some of the basics to analyze your fluid leaks.

Types of Fluid That May Leak

While you can assume that the fluid running from your car is gasoline or engine oil, there are more fluids than the two. Below are some of your vehicle's fluids that may be the puddle on the ground:

  • Brake Fluid - This yellowish solution is responsible for engaging your brakes. While this type of leak rarely happens in modern cars, it is still possible.
  • Coolant (or Antifreeze) - Coolant is a bright-colored solution, usually pink, orange, or green, that helps maintain your engine temperature. Coolant is a sticky, syrupy liquid and is prone to leaking.
  • Motor Oil - This type of leak may be the most noticeable because it is dark brown or black, depending on how old your oil is. Engine oil leaks may have a burning smell to them.
  • Gasoline - If your car's leak smells like it does when you're filling up at the pump, the liquid is most likely gasoline. 
  • Power Steering Fluid - Power steering fluid sometimes has a reddish hue. If you have this leak, you notice that it takes more grip and handling to make turns in your vehicle.
  • Transmission fluid - This fluid is also red, so it may be difficult to distinguish it from power steering fluid. You may experience gear shifting problems in some cases.
  • Water - In some cases, your car's HVAC system may just leak water. This is harmless most of the time, and you shouldn't worry about it.

If you have trouble identifying your fluid leak, feel free to bring it to H B Auto & AC for an inspection. Our team will pinpoint where your leak is coming from and get you the necessary repairs.

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