How to Identify Car Leak Colors & What They Indicate

We understand that it can be concerning to see a leak underneath your vehicle. If it looks oily and is substantial, more than likely you have a major leak that needs to be repaired. The best thing to do is get your vehicle into David's Garage if you suspect that it could be with an important fluid, such as transmission fluid or engine oil. Understanding what certain colored fluid indicates can help you know when a leak is critical. 

We've created a guide that explains the common leak colors and what they indicate. Use this to check your car's leak and if it is a major fluid, get your vehicle into our shop as soon as you can.

Red - Red fluid is typically a transmission or power steering system leak. This can stem from a broken transmission seal or a hole in a line between systems. 

Orange - Orange fluid can be a number of different things. It could be antifreeze or just regular condensation that is rusty from the radiator. Transmission fluid can also look orange if it is aged. 

Yellow - Yellow fluid indicates a radiator coolant leak, which can happen if there is a loose hose clamp or a damaged o-ring. This is vital to fix as soon as possible. 

Green - Green fluid can point to an antifreeze leak. Antifreeze can start to leak when certain hoses, fittings, or clamps have worn out.

Blue - Blue is leaking windshield wiper fluid. With time, the fluid reservoir and tubing that carries this fluid can wear out and corrode, eventually leading to leaks. This isn't a critical leak but is still something you want to get fixed before it gets worse. 

Clear - Clear liquid is just condensation, likely from your car's A/C system, and doesn't need attention. 

Dark Brown - This could be old/dirty motor oil, but could also be brake fluid. Either is a major concern and needs to be taken care of ASAP. 

Light Brown - Light brown fluid is either motor oil or gear lubricant. If you notice a bad smell, it is more than likely gear lube.

Pink - Pink fluid typically indicates power steering fluid or transmission fluid. These leaks are usually from a worn seal or a hole in the return line.

Once you’ve noted the color of the leak and the general area of where the leak is located, it’s time to have your vehicle inspected here at our shop. Don’t ignore a leak coming from underneath your vehicle - a leak in the brake fluid or engine fluid can be dangerous, not only to the health of your vehicle but to you and your family’s safety on the road. 

If you notice a leak underneath your car, come by the experts here at David's Garage today. Rest assured we will get the leak identified and repaired in a timely manner so you can get back on the road again with a reliable vehicle. 

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