Blog

Vacaville Auto Repair: 6 Fluids Your Car Needs

You might think of your engine as a ton of metal tubes and bolts, but in reality without some vital fluids, your car would be in trouble! Here’s a list of 6 critical fluids your car needs:

Transmission Fluid

Your engine does a lot of work, but if it wasn’t for your transmission your wheels wouldn’t even make it a revolution. And it’s the transmission fluid that lubricates the gear box so your car shifts, allowing your vehicle to move. To check your transmission fluid, find the dipstick in your engine bay marked “transmission fluid.” After taking it out, look for correct levels, a petroleum-like smell, and the right color—clear for manual transmissions, red for automatics. If the colors are off or the levels are low, have them topped off at a Vacaville Auto Repair shop.

Coolant

Without coolant (or antifreeze, as it’s also known), your engine would heat up and explode faster than a Backstreet Boys single in the 90’s. If you’ve ever noticed neon yellow/green fluid coming from your car and into your parking spot, then you most likely have a coolant leak! Running low on this critical fluid could very quickly lead to a VERY expensive breakdown. It’s recommended you flush your coolant system every 2-3 years or 24,000-36,000 miles regardless of leaks.

Brake Fluid

This hydraulic fluid transfers the force of your foot on the brakes into friction on the brake pads, thus stopping your car. To make sure you have the right hydraulic pressure, your brake master cylinder needs to be topped off with brake fluid. If your brakes are soft or the pedal engages low, don’t wait to have the brake system inspected by an ASE-Certified Vacaville Mechanic at your local auto shop.

Power Steering Fluid

Power steering fluid might seem like something you can live without by the sound of it. However, anyone who’s ever had the misfortune of losing their power steering in the middle of a drive knows how difficult operating your vehicle is—it becomes a battle, one that requires strength and smarts, and could very possibly result in an accident. This doesn’t have to be an issue, though. Just talk to a Vacaville Mechanic about topping off your fluids.

Windshield Washer Fluid

This mixture of solvents and detergents drizzles onto your windshield as wipers clear off any debris that might be hindering your visibility. It’s important to always have this fluid topped off, as you never know when you’ll run into an especially muddy day!

Motor Oil

Think of oil as the lifeblood of your car, as its purpose is to ease the friction in your engine. When your oil level is low or if it hasn’t been changed in a while, you may be looking at some hefty repair bills in the near future! It’s best to have your oil changed every 3 months or 3,000 miles, whichever comes first.