So, you are getting ready for a trip and you notice puddle of water underneath your car. Is it safe to drive? Or is it coolant that is leaking?
Don’t worry, read ahead and check what to do in such a case!
Confirm its Water!
The very first thing to check: coolant or water? When you see a fluid underneath your car, you need to check what it is exactly. It isn’t very hard to determine the presence of water but sometimes it might be quite difficult to tell what exactly you are looking at. Why is might be difficult? It depends upon where you park your car!
There are typically six types of fluids that can probably leak from your car. Coolant and water can look similar on a dark surface. It might be harder to figure whether it is coolant or water.
But you can determine whether it is coolant or water using smell and color of the fluid. We know that water is colorless, odourless. But antifreeze or coolant has a sweet smell. It is definitely coolant if the fluid smells sweet.
You can also collect some fluid on damp cloth or paper. Water is colorless so if you see any other color like green, yellow or blue, then it might be antifreeze that is leaking.
What causes a car to leak water?
Sometimes humidity and haziness can also cause the car to leak water. The very first culprit could be car’s air conditioning system.
Car’s air conditioning system removes moisture from air to the passenger compartment. When the air is hot outside, air circulated through your car contains moisture in it. The moisture is removed as car is cooled down. Water is drained out of the car with the help of rubber hose. So, it might be moisture that is causing puddle of water underneath your car. Once the moisture is gone, the leaking will slow down.
Some SUVs may have two AC drains and evaporates which means that you may be able to notice two different leakages.
Sometimes cracks in windshield washer system can also cause the leaks. Unless you are using the windshield washer system, there is no fluid flow or pressuring in the system so it is very unlikely you would have a leak.
But frozen washer fluid in the reservoir can cause cracks. Always use fluid that does not get frozen and has a low freezing point. Better replace windshield washer reservoir to avoid future inconvenience.
In addition to condensation from car’s cooling system, there is also possibility to get natural condensation from car’s exhaust. This happens generally when it is cold outside and you might notice some water sputtering from car’s tailpipe. This situation is not that worrisome.
But that water is extremely dangerous for car’s exhaust. Blown head gasket, coolant leaking in combustion chambers can blow your repair budget heavily. So make sure what you are seeing is just a small trace of water.
How to stop water leaks?
If you suspect that the water leak is caused due to car’s air conditioning system, it’s better to keep its re circulation button turned on rather using fresh air option.
The fresh air option continues to drag humid air inside your car and the temperature inside won’t reach optimum level. Air will lose the humidity and air condition system will work with more efficiency under re circulation option.
Clean the rubber drain hose if you find that the passenger carpet is getting wet. Air conditioner drain might be clogged. If you can, carefully spot the leaks or visit a mechanic for further inspection. Replace cooling and heating auto parts if they are broken or somehow need replacement.
Is it safe to drive?
It depends on where the water is coming from! If you can confidently say that the water is dripping under your car not coolant and it is coming from back of engine compartment, then it is not harmful to drive.
But if you can’t verify exactly the location and can’t say whether it coming from near or back of engine compartment or not, so in that case, don’t take