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Everything to Know About Engine Oil Leaks (and How to Avoid Them)
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Car fluids play a vital role to ensure that your vehicle runs properly. Occasionally, after leaving your car parked in a spot for a long time, you might spot some liquid drops under it. This is a dead giveaway that your car has some form of fluid leakage. This piece looks at the most common type of fluid leakage - engine oil leakage. However, it's worthwhile to know what other types of fluids leak from your car, and how to identify which one it is. We'll also look at the best practices to avoid fluid leakage and what are the most common causes.
What other types of fluids leak from the car?
As we discussed earlier, spotting a patch of fluids under your car signifies that you may have some type of fluid leakage. Let's take a look at what kinds of liquids leak from the vehicle and how to identify them.
Antifreeze fluid leak – If you spot a patch of thick fluid that is green, pink, or yellow in colour around or under your car, it's likely that your antifreeze fluid is leaking.
Steering fluid leak – Steering fluid, as the name suggests, typically leaks around where the steering wheel is situated in the car, which is the front. The color of the fluid would either be red or brown in colour, and is thinner than other fluids.
Water leak – Water leaks are typically spotted right underneath the car. As the name would suggest, the fluid would look like a small amount of clear and odourless liquid.
Transmission fluid leak – If you spot a thick patch of red or brownish fluid under the mid-section of your car, then it's almost always hints towards transmission fluid leakage.
Brake fluid leak – If you spot a brownish, oily patch near the passenger side or around the car's wheels, then it's a sign that your brake fluid has a leakage.
Why is it essential to maintain your engine oil levels?
It goes without saying, but the engine is the heart of your vehicle. It's the most essential component of your car and ensures that it functions correctly.
Moreover, the engine has several components which are working in accordance with one another while the car stays running. Due to the nature of all the moving parts working in tandem, there is a lot of friction in this part of the car.
That is where engine oil comes in. It acts as a lubricant to help reduce friction amongst all the other components. This, in turn, ensures the car runs appropriately while increasing the lifespan of the engine and all its parts.
To ensure that all your engine components run correctly, you need to use premium engine oil all the time. This means that you should get a car oil change periodically.
Our resident auto service experts at Service My Car recommend you to get a car oil change every 6 months, or after every 10,000km, whichever comes first.
If you fail to change your engine oil as per your manufacturer's recommendation, it'll become dirty. It loses its viscosity and becomes weak at acting as a lubricant.
If you become irregular with your oil changes, the problem manifests as an oil leak. Engine oil leakage typically looks like thick, brown liquid with a greasy texture. It's commonly found underneath the front side of your car.
To identify whether it's actually an engine oil leak, you will need to do a more thorough inspection. You can do this by propping open the hood of your car and checking if the engine is littered with oil or if there are any oil-based remnants in and around your engine.
What are the most common factors that result in engine oil leakage?
Worn out oil pans and engine gaskets
Engine oil that is added to the engine for lubrication is typically goes through the oil pan and engine gaskets, which are situated at the bottom of the engine.
With constant travel on rough roads and other similar paths, the pan and gaskets can wear out over time.
Engine oil components that are improperly installed
You can face engine oil leakage if specific parts aren't installed correctly. For instance, if the oil pan and the engine gaskets are too tight or too loose, oil can leak from the engine.
Valve seals and rings that are defective
If your valve rings or seals are damaged, it could result in minor engine oil leakage.
It's highly imperative to know that engine oil leakage does not only happen when the car is stationary. It can also occur when the vehicle is being used on the road. It can be a lot more harmful since the heat from the engine can cause a fire to break out.
Engine oil leaks can damage your entire engine module, especially if they aren't taken care of for a long time. The best way to avoid oil leaks is by regularly getting a car oil change and getting a thorough inspection of your engine.
If you need any type of Car Service, Service My Car provides you free pickup and delivery plus full car servicing at the nearest car service center in Manchester.
You can get all this and much more at Service My Car. Whether you want to get a car engine repair, or you're looking for a car oil change, or you want a full inspection, we do it all.
Book your service today on the Service My Car app or on our website.