How does CSF liquid smell

Stain check: What to do with oil stains, fuel stains and brake fluid?

When there are stains under the car, most people think of oil leakage. But there can be other causes as well. We'll tell you how to check the liquid under your car yourself. What is it? And what should you do? In part 1 of our little stain analysis we tell you how you can identify oil, fuel and brake fluid and what to do if a stain occurs:

What to do if there is a stain under the car?

Anyone who depends on their car doesn't want any trouble. And that threatens often enough if indefinable stains are left in the parking lot. Before you panic, you should take a closer look. Because it is not always the same oil that escapes. But if you notice that mess is always being seen at your regular place, it is time for a closer examination.

So get down on your knees. Then you can see more precisely what is really dripping out of your car. First, you can rub the stain with a white cloth and sniff it. How does it smell? The finger test provides further information. A courageous grip in the small puddle is enough to become safer. Is it sticky, runny, or greasy?

Oil stains - a case for the workshop

You can easily recognize oil by its appearance and, above all, its consistency. Petrol and water would be thin. However, if there is a tough black mass under the car that feels a bit greasy between your fingers, it is most likely oil. That means: off to the workshop to find out where the leak is.

Because not only the fact that your engine will have too little lubricant in the long run to function properly is important. Loss of oil harms the environment, and not too scarcely. One drop of oil can be enough to pollute around 1000 liters of groundwater. Of course, you shouldn't just leave the oil stain behind either. The best thing to do is remove it immediately. You can easily dry the stain with binding agent or sawdust. The easiest way to remove any oil that has penetrated the ground is with an oil stain remover.

In the workshop, the specialist will show you what you can do. In the best case scenario, only the oil drain plug is leaking. Usually the oil comes from another dubious source. In any case, oil loss is not to be trifled with. Unfortunately, leaky engines are often the price for a long and busy engine life.

Fuel line defective - fuel leaks

If you find out with the odor test that fuel - petrol or diesel - is leaking, it is possible that a fuel line is leaking. Diesel smells slightly musty and leaves rather dark, greasy stains. Petrol is transparent and hardly stains because it evaporates quickly. But everyone knows the typical gasoline smell. You have to be careful here! If you notice a strong smell of gasoline, it is better to go to the workshop quickly and have all lines checked. Those who are familiar can even switch lines themselves. If your car is usually in the garage, you should definitely ventilate it first! Of course, the petrol and diesel stains should also be thoroughly cleaned off.

Be careful with brake fluid

Be careful if brake fluid leaks. Because too little brake fluid in the line means that you can no longer brake. And that's really not to be trifled with. You can recognize brake fluid by the fact that it smells similar to gasoline, but has a green shimmer. Also be careful with the finger test! Brake fluid is very irritating to the skin and should be washed off as soon as possible.

Defective brake lines mean for you: Hands off! Drive to the workshop for a brake check. If it's just around the corner, you can go there yourself. Otherwise, let yourself be towed.

Brake fluid kit is also bad for the environment. So don't just ignore it, but rather dispose of the brake fluid with an oil binding agent, as with the oil stain. Please make sure that you dispose of the whole thing as hazardous waste.

Now you know how to tell the difference between the different liquids. In the case of oil, fuel and brake fluid, you should be alerted directly and have a specialist check the cause. But there are also less worrying spots under your car that you can easily identify yourself. Which are they? You will find out in part 2 of our spotting. Until then: clean journey!