What Is Leaking Under My Car?

No matter how great or reliable your car is, the odds are good that one day you’re going to see something leaking underneath it. And when that happens, you’re probably going to worry about what the leaking fluid is and what it means for your car. You might wonder if your car is safe to drive, and how much the repairs will cost. Before you get too concerned, learn about the most common types of car leaks so you can correct the problem without getting a headache.

undercarriage of a vehicle

Clear Fluid Leaking From Car: Water

The least concerning liquid that might leak from your car is water. So why does your car have water leaking from the bottom of it? Probably because you’ve been running your air conditioner, which leads to water condensation. The other common cause of a water leak is the windshield washing system, which is also not an issue. In general, as long as you can determine that one of these two systems is behind the water leak, you can ignore it.

Brown or Black Fluid Leaking From Car: Oil

If you’re wondering, “what is leaking under my car?” and notice that the fluid is brown, black, or amber in color, it’s probably engine oil. Get closer to the fluid so you can touch it. If it feels slick and is hard to get off your fingers, it’s likely oil. You should further investigate by taking note of where it’s coming from since oil can leak from various spots that include the head gasket, oil filter, oil plug, and timing cover. Once you’ve determined it’s oil, check the oil level and refill as needed. Then you can either make plans to get your car to a mechanic fairly soon so you can find out why it’s leaking oil, or fix the issue yourself by adding No Leak Engine Oil Stop Leak. The biggest concern here is driving your car on little to no oil, which means you’ll have to check and refill the oil frequently until you make it to a mechanic.

Red Fluid Leaking From Car: Automatic Transmission Fluid

Another car liquid that is slick is automatic transmission fluid. However, it tends to be pink or dark red in color, and it definitely doesn’t smell like oil. In fact, it’s considered odorless. If you suspect your car is leaking transmission fluid, you can confirm it by looking for the leak near the middle or front of the car, especially by the selector shaft or the fluid drain hole, or between the engine and the transmission. You should also check the transmission fluid levels and add some if you need to, and then add No Leak Transmission Fluid Stop Leak to the system. Keep in mind that driving your car without enough transmission fluid can keep the gears from shifting smoothly and might even damage the transmission, so it’s important to ensure you have enough.

red fluid leaking underneath a car

Red or Brown Fluid Leaking From Car: Power Steering Fluid

Another reddish liquid that might be leaking from your car is the power steering fluid. It usually has a slightly sweet, burnt smell. Power steering fluid leaks usually occur near the steering rack or the hoses attached to the power steering reservoir, so look there for this fluid. You can also check the fluid level to determine if it’s low, and if so, add more so you don’t have any problems steering your car, and then add No Leak All In One Stop Leak to take care of the leak within minutes.

Yellow Fluid Leaking From Car: Coolant

One of the most common reasons you might think, “what is leaking under my car?” is coolant, which is a liquid that can be anything from yellow or green to pink. Since few other fluids come in these colors, you should be able to identify coolant right away. If you’re still unsure, note that coolant smells a bit sweet and feels slimy. This fluid might leak from the radiator, its overflow tank, the water pump, or a hose. If you think it’s coolant under your car, add AlumAseal Cooling System Stop Leak to the system to take care of the leak. Be sure to add more coolant to the reservoir afterward.

Brown, Slick Fluid Leaking From Car: Brake Fluid

One liquid you don’t want leaking from your car is brake fluid. It’s typically either light or dark brown, depending on how old it is, and it’s slippery to the touch. Look for this fluid under the wheels or anywhere near the brakes in general. If you do see brake fluid, don’t try to drive your car, as you run the risk of not being able to stop. The best course of action is to have the car towed to a mechanic. Fortunately, brake fluid leaks are pretty rare, so hopefully you don’t run into this situation.

As you can see, there are several DIY ways to stop car leaks of all kinds. But if you’re not sure what’s even leaking or don’t want to try fixing it on your own, get your car to a mechanic as soon as possible to ensure you don’t cause any damage to your vehicle.

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