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Phoenix, AZ Common Car Leaks - How to tell what

My car is leaking something but not sure what it is.  In the Phoenix, AZ heat, the question of what fluid is leaking is a question of when, not if, you will experience this.

This question used to be easy to answer based on the color of the liquid – all you had to do is place a piece of notebook paper underneath the car and look at the color of the fluid:

  • Pink-brown: Transmission
  • Greenish: Coolant
  • Brown-black: Oil
  • Reddish: Power Steering
  • For 4Wheel-Drive vehicles: Brown coming from below the engine: Transfer case fluid
  • Blue: Window washer fluid

This is still generally true, bu today, it is not so easy – some coolant is now pink or orange, some power steering is now green and other fluids are now even blue.

There are however some tell-tale things to look for – we call them ‘fluid trails’ – that are left on the parts that help define what is leaking, regardless of color. Coolant, for example, leaves little “icicles” that can be tracked.

Normally, cars have an odor that is not pleasant – some of it is downright awful. Have you ever smelled something that was a little sweet?  If there is ever a an almost pleasant smell, chances are pretty good that you have a coolant leak.  That one is one of the more problematic leaks as it can come from hoses, the radiator, or the water pump.

Dayes Automotive is a full service repair shop – we chase down leaks like a good hunting dog tracking quail! When it comes to understanding what a car is leaking in Phoenix, you can trust one of our certified technicians to give you the honest answer. Contact us today for a free inspection.

Stay Cool -

Tim and Kent