Keeping the different fluids in your car clean and full, is part of your basic car maintenance that you don't want to neglect. By keeping your car well-maintained you can help prevent breakdowns or future problems. It's not uncommon to see an engine go well over 200,000 miles if it has been properly maintained. If you don't know where to find the fluids in your car you can always refer to your owner's manual to find them, and see what maintenance is required.
Here are the different fluids your car uses. It's also important to know what these fluids look like so you can identify them if you have a leak.
Engine Oil (Dark amber or brownish color) - The motor oil in your car keeps all the engine parts working and lubricated, without this oil your engine would seize up and stop running. Check your engine oil at least once a month and make sure it is filled to the mark on the oil dipstick. Make sure you put the proper type oil in your car by checking with your owner's manual.
Power Steering Fluid (Goes in clear but turns darker with usage and age) - This keeps your car turning easily and effortlessly.
Automatic Transmission Fluid (Usually a reddish or pinkish color) - This important reddish, fluid allows your car to move backwards and forwards easily and smoothly by shifting gears while you drive. A manual transmission may use several different fluids. Check your owner's manual to make sure you are using the right fluid.
Brake Fluid (Goes in clear but turns amber with usage) - There is a reservoir for the master cylinder up on the firewall of the engine compartment where you can check the level of fluid. Keep it up to the full mark. The brake fluid allows you to stop your car. Without brake fluid you literally have no brakes.
Engine Coolant or Anti-freeze (Florescent-colored green or orange liquid) - Keeps the cylinder heads and engine block cool so your engine doesn't overheat and seize up.
Rear End Oil (Dark amber or brownish color) - This allows your drive axle to turn freely and smoothly.
Windshield Washer Fluid (Usually a blue color) - Used to help keep your windshield clean and streak free for good visibility.
It is important to maintain the proper levels of fluids in your car for safe operation and in preventing trouble down the road. If you notice any signs of these oils or fluids on your garage floor they need your immediate attention before causing serious problems and damage.