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How to Identify a Leak in Your Vehicle

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There are many different things that could be leaking from your vehicle.

Whether you’ve noticed a stain on your driveway where your vehicle has been parked or you see an active drip coming from your vehicle, you’ve got a leak on your hands. The leak could be coming from many different places, and it could be many different fluids, and in order to determine the severity of the problem and what steps you should take to fix it, you’ll need to first identify what that leak is. Here are the most common fluids that could be leaking from your vehicle and how to identify them:

#1. Oil

One of the most common leaks vehicles experience is an oil leak. Oil leaks are usually located right under the engine, and the fluid will feel a little sticky. Oil is fairly easy to spot because of its tell-tale black or dark brown color.

#2. Gas

Gas leaks are some of the easiest leaks to identify because of the distinct smell of gasoline. You might be able to guess at the source of the leak, depending on where the stain is or the general direction your leak is coming from. If the leak is coming from the rear of your vehicle, it’s an indicate that the gas tank is leaky. However, if the leak is coming from the front of your vehicle, it could be the fuel pump or fuel lines.

#3. Coolant

Coolant — also called antifreeze — is one of the most distinctive fluids that may leak from your vehicle. This is thanks to its bright green color; though, it can sometimes be bright pink or orange. A couple of other distinct signs of coolant include a slimy feel and a slightly sweet smell. A coolant leak will often be found toward the middle of your vehicle.

#4. Transmission Fluid

If it’s new, transmission fluid will be light red in color, and if it’s old, it’ll be a darker red or a brownish color. It’s also thicker than most other fluids and feels similar to oil. Transmission fluid leaks often come from the front-middle area of your vehicle. The most common sources are the transmission filler tube, the selector shaft, the transmission fluid drain hole and between the engine and the transmission.

#5. Power Steering Fluid

Many vehicles actually use transmission fluid as power steering fluid, so look for a reddish stain to indicate a power steering fluid leak. Since the power steering system is located near the front of the vehicle, if the power steering fluid is leaking, it’ll be located there. If you’re not sure whether the leak is transmission fluid or power steering fluid, and your vehicle has been harder to steer than usual, it’s probably a power steering fluid leak.

Prevent leaks with the right hoses.

Leaks like the ones we’ve mentioned above commonly come from holes, cracks or other weaknesses in a vehicle’s hoses. At Flex Technologies, we offer silicone coolant hoses, and they are made strong and durable enough to withstand the heat in your vehicle’s engine. Take the first step toward preventing coolant leaks by upgrading to silicone coolant hoses today!

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