As the fluid that reacts and releases energy to power the internal combustion engine, fuel needs to flow cleanly and smoothly through a system that will determine the performance of your car. The most common issues that affect the fuel system are related to the fuel pump, filter or injectors. There is nothing that can really be surmised by looking at the fluid that runs through the fuel system; however, sluggish engine performance can often be caused by problems with the various system components.
This fluid may not play a part in the performance of the engine, power plant or drivetrain, but it is crucial because it lets you see the road ahead. Similar to fuel, windshield washer fluid is something that you can check and refill on your own. You can even get away with a broken windshield washer pump if you have a jug and a squeegee tool, but this should only be a temporary measure.
Performance, safety and longevity are what you can expect from the lubrication that motor oil provides inside your car’s engine. Even if you have a full tank of gas, you will not be able to drive far if major engine oil issues are present. Getting regular oil changes according to the recommendations of automakers and service technicians is essential in ensuring that your car will last. Aside from preventing friction between metal parts of the engine, motor oil also helps to keep things cool and smooth between combustion cycles. Auto service technicians will always take a good look at the condition of this fluid during each oil change because certain aspects may reveal other issues.
Also known as engine coolant and antifreeze, this fluid keeps things cool by a heat absorption and dissipation mechanism. Similar to engine oil, coolant is a fluid that auto mechanics know they should check when they suspect something is wrong with the water pump, thermostat, fan, hoses, or cooling lines. Driving with a reliable coolant system is just as crucial as frequently changing the oil; for the most part, repairs to this system are affordable and can be completed quickly.
The smooth handling of your car is the result of a clever implementation of various hydraulic systems that require the smooth flow of specific fluids. In the case of your braking systems, fluid runs through lines that connect the pedal to the stopping mechanism of the brake pads. Rough or uneven braking may be caused by low brake fluid levels, leaks, contamination, or obstructions. Emergency or parking brakes do not generally feature hydraulic systems.
Power Steering Fluid
This is one of the fluids that you will not find in electric cars; moreover, some compact models do not feature a hydraulic system to assist with driving and handling. If your the power steering system of your car gradually starts giving you a hard time, you may be running low on fluid. The worst-case scenario is when a major leak depletes the steering fluid reservoir and hydraulic lines; in this case, you will still be able to steer, but it will be very uncomfortable.
Your car’s transmission system may require two fluids: a lubricating oil and a hydraulic fluid for the clutch. Checking the levels and appearance of both fluids can give service technicians an idea about the overall condition of this system, but modern transmissions tend to be very complex. Any sign of fluid contamination or leakage should be immediately addressed for the purpose of preventing further damage to the transmission system, which can be costly to repair. Most electric car owners do not have to worry about transmission fluids.
If you have questions about the fluids of your car, please feel free to contact our shop and speak with our technicians, particularly if you plan on keeping your vehicle parked during the winter.