Stains in Your Driveway? Figure Out What’s Leaking from Your Car!

Minit-Tune & Brake| Thursday, September 27, 2018

When you back out of your driveway or garage, do you see newly formed spots and stains on a regular basis? This could be a major indicator that your vehicle has a fluid leak, and needs to be serviced as soon as possible. It can help to understand what you’re looking at, and to know if it’s something that should concern you. Our experts at Minit-Tune & Brake Auto Centres are here to help and can work to identify the fluids.

Auto fluid maintenance in British Columbia and Alberta

Common Auto Fluid Leaks

If you believe that you have a leak and aren’t sure what you’re looking at, try taking a picture of the fluids before they dry out completely. Knowing where they are in relation to the undercarriage of your car can also help you to figure out exactly the source of the leak. Take these photos with you to one of our experienced auto repair mechanics when you come in for service. Common fluid leaks can include:

  • Coolant: This will be a viscous yellow, green, or pink fluid that dries a slightly darker colour and has a sticky feel. Coolant can be dangerous when leaked around animals or children and can cause your vehicle to randomly overheat.
  • Oil: This is black or dark brown, and fairly easy to identify. Leaking oil can indicate a problem in your engine and should be checked by a professional before the problem gets worse.
  • Transmission Fluid: Cleaner transmission fluid will be thinner and light pink or red coloured, while older fluid will be thick and rust colored or brown. Leaking transmission fluid can quickly lead to much larger problems. Don’t let this go unchecked.
  • Power Steering Fluid: Sometimes this is mistaken for transmission fluid, but it will be slightly darker reddish-brown and thinner. Losing too much of this can cause you to have a difficult time controlling your vehicle. Have it checked out immediately!
  • Brake Fluid: Brake fluid can appear very close to water but remains slick and has a darker or brown tint. Do NOT attempt to drive your vehicle if you suspect a brake fluid leak.

Most of these chemicals can be toxic if ingested by children or pets, so cleaning them up quickly should be a priority.

Removing Stubborn Driveway Stains

This requires some simple supplies and a lot of elbow grease.

  • Sweep the area of any debris.
  • Use a shop towel to wipe away or absorb any extra fluids.
  • You can use a grease cutting dish soap or a specially formulated driveway cleaner to lather over the area.
  • Scrub with a stiff bristled broom.
  • Rinse away the mess with the highest setting on your garden hose or use a pressure washer for well-sealed driveways.
  • Repeat until the spots are completely gone.

Once this is complete, call our automotive professionals at Minit-Tune & Brake Auto Centres to schedule your repairs in Vancouver and surrounding cities. You can reach us by using our simple online contact form, or by calling one of our convenient locations.

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