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Is Your Car Leaking Fluid? A What to do Guide

Have you ever parked your car and noticed a large leak of fluid on the ground where you parked? This can be a frustrating and terrifying sight for many people who may not have any car experience. Before you get too concerned, you should stop and see if the leak is really coming from your car.

If you have parked in a public setting, the leak could be from a different car that was parked there before yours. If you parked your car in your own driveway, the leak is likely coming from your car. Once you can determine if the leak is actually from your car, you should try to lay on the ground and see if you see a leak coming from your car.

Use Cardboard

Cardboard is a great option to determine where and if a leak is coming from your car. Simply get a large piece of cardboard and slide it under your car. Lay it on the ground for a few minutes so that it captures all the fluid. This will give you a good idea of the color and amount of fluid that is leaking. After the cardboard has sat for about twenty or so minutes, remove it and look at the fluid.

Clear Liquid

If you see clear liquid on the cardboard, you likely have no reason to be concerned. More often than not, the liquid is water. Your car produces condensed water from the air conditioning unit, which is very noticeable during the warmer months. It may also be a little antifreeze or coolant, but either of these is not cause for major concern.

Amber Color Liquid

If you notice an amber or multi-colored liquid, it is likely a gas spill. If this spill is not a result of careless gas pumping, it could be a result of a crack in your fuel tank. This can easily be repaired if you take your car to the nearest repair shop. Try to avoid driving your car, apart from straight to the automotive shop.

Red Fluid

If you notice red fluid under your car, it is likely a sign that you have a leak in your transmission. This can be a costly repair and is a sign that your car needs maintenance attention right away. If you notice red fluid, and a lot of it, try to have your car towed to the nearest repair shop.

Brown Fluid

Brown fluid can mean a few different things, but if you touch the fluid and it is a slippery liquid, it could be your brake fluid. You should immediately have your car towed to the nearest mechanic so that they can confirm the problem and help fix your car. Try to avoid driving your car if you notice a large amount of brown fluid because you may not be able to stop when driving if you are leaking brake fluid.

If you notice your car leaking fluid, this guide can help you create a plan of action. The color of the fluid is a major sign that can point to the real problem. Anytime you see a fluid leak, try to bring your car to your local repair shop.

Photo by PongMoj from getty images via Canva Pro