Under the Hood

What's leaking from my car?

July 16, 2010
It’s happened to all of us at least once. You back out of your driveway and notice a dark spot of liquid on the pavement. So, what is leaking? And is it dangerous? Does every leak need to be looked at? I spoke with one of my Service Managers to get the low down. Here’s what he had to say: Why do cars leak? Over time, seals and gaskets harden, which causes cracks, which can cause leaks. Almost all engines will seep. Seeping is okay. Leaking is different. Leaking is not okay. So, if you notice liquid dropping to the ground, it could be any of the following:
  • Grease – black in color at wheel base or rear of vehicle
  • Antifreeze – green or red in color at front of vehicle
  • Transmission oil – red in color at front or rear
  • Engine oil – brown in color any part of vehicle
If you notice a leak (not a seep), you should get it checked out as soon as you can. Oh, and if you see a puddle of water, don’t worry. A drain hose is connected to the air conditioner. Condensation can occur and water can leak out. No harm with that! Have you ever noticed any funky residue left on your driveway?

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