Primary Colors of Automotive Fluids

Published on: October 1, 2021

Oil Change Warwick, RI

It’s a good idea to know automotive fluid colors so you can tell what is leaking out of your car, truck, or C/SUV should it spring a leak. Use a white cloth or paper towel to dab the leaking fluid from your garage floor so you can find out its exact color. If your automobile does spring a leak, don’t worry. Primary Auto Care can locate the leak and fix it. We do want to caution you, however, that it might not be safe to drive your automobile while it is leaking certain fluids.


It’s usually okay to keep driving your vehicle if it is leaking blue fluid because this fluid is windshield washing solution. Be cautious, however, and pop your hood to see if your antifreeze/coolant is blue. If it is, don’t drive your automobile.


It’s not a good idea to continue to operate your vehicle if it’s leaking brown fluid. As you know, the motor oil inside the engine is brown. You may not realize that your brake fluid is also brown, and you certainly don’t want to drive with low brake fluid. The differential oil is also brown.


Clear fluid isn’t a problem unless it smells like fuel. If it does, don’t drive your automobile. If it smells like water, it is water. Water drips from the air conditioner when it is running and it also drips out of the tailpipe. This is normal. You can drive your automobile.


One of the most common colors of antifreeze/coolant is green. The color may be bright green, neon green, or green/blue. It can also be green/yellow. No matter the color, driving your automobile with low coolant will overheat the engine and damage it further.


If you’re driving an older automobile, the bottom of your radiator may be corroded. Eventually, the rust will eat through the radiator and you’ll end up with orange coolant on your garage floor. It’s the rust that turns the coolant this orange color.


You shouldn’t have any pink fluid in your automobile. If you see pink, frothy fluid on your cloth or paper towel, you have a serious problem brewing between the transmission and the cooling system. Do not drive your automobile under any circumstance.


It can also be damaging to drive your automobile when it is leaking red fluid. Both power steering and transmission fluid are red. Aside from these two fluids, you may also have red brake fluid or coolant in the engine.


Finally, yellow, neon yellow, or yellow/green fluid is antifreeze/coolant. As we mentioned above, driving your automobile when it is leaking coolant will cause the engine to overheat.

Again, Primary Auto Care in Warwick, RI, would be happy to find your automotive leak and fix it. Call us today for an appointment.

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