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Sunday, September 21, 2014

How to Find Oil Leaks on Car Engine

Did you see oil stains on your garage floor? Are your engine fluids always running low? Chances are your car has an oil leak, and you need to find out where this is coming from to prevent further damage.

Your car engine uses different kinds of fluids/oils to operate properly. Some of them are as follows, including the color of the fluid or oil:

  • Engine oil – brown/blackish brown
  • Transmission fluid or ATF – red/reddish brown
  • Engine and radiator coolant – blue/yellow depending on the make and model of the vehicle.
  • Brake fluid – deep red/pale red/brown depending on the type of brake fluid used.

If you want to accurately find oil leaks on your car engine, then all you need to do is to distinguish the type of oil or fluid that is leaking.

How to Find Oil Leaks on Car Engine

In the absence of specialized tools and equipment such as mammoth vehicle lifts, you can accurately diagnose the type of oil that is leaking outside your car engine.

You will only need the following:

  • Flashlight
  • Cotton rag or dirty cloth

Step 1: Start the engine and open the hood. Let the vehicle idle for a couple of minutes, or until the temperature gauge reaches the normal level.

Step 2: Move the vehicle to a different spot in the garage. You can either reverse the vehicle or park in a different spot so you can see the drip stains on the garage floor.

Step 3: Let the car idle while you inspect the oil leaks on the floor. It is at this point that you can easily distinguish the type of leak. If the stain is blackish or brownish in color, then your car might have an engine oil leak. If the stain has a reddish color, then the leak may come from the automatic transmission of your vehicle.

Step 4: If the stain has a watery consistency coupled with a yellowish or bluish hue, you should check your radiator along with the engine coolant hoses of your engine. Remember that engine coolant is not supposed to leak. You should also check the temperature gauge on your dashboard, and see if your vehicle is overheating.

Step 5: Wipe the floor stain with a cotton rag to confirm the color, smell, and consistency of the stain. Use a flashlight to visually inspect the location of the leak on your car engine.

Step 6: Now that you know the cause of the leak, you should call your mechanic or service center and make an appointment. Any type of oil leak or engine leak should be repaired immediately.

Remember that even new cars are prone to have leaks of some sort. If that is the case, contact your service adviser at the dealership and inquire about your new vehicle warranty. The dealership should check and repair the leak at no cost to you.

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