How to Check Your Vehicle’s Fluids

December 24th, 2021 by

If you want to get the most life from your vehicle, then you must check its fluids regularly. Your vehicle operates on a number of different fluids designed to protect parts from excessive wear and damage. The service center team at Federico CDJR has put together this guide on how you can properly check your vehicle’s fluids to ensure lasting performance from your car truck or SUV.

Engine Oil

Chances are you know where to check the engine oil. This important oil is responsible for protecting your vehicle’s engine and maintaining good performance and mileage numbers. To check your vehicle’s engine oil, remove and wipe clean the dipstick. Afterward, insert it for a clean read. On the dipstick, you will. be able to read the level of your oil. If our oil level is low, then you should follow the instructions on your vehicle’s operating manual for proper filling of the engine oil tank.  Be sure to not overfill your vehicle’s engine oil! When in doubt, simply maintain the regular oil change schedule for your vehicle. Typically, conventional oil is changed every 3,000 miles, semi-synthetic oil is changed every 5,000 miles and synthetic oil is changed every 7,500 miles.

Coolant 

You don’t want to deal with a vehicle that overheats or freezes on you at the worst possible time. That’s why you should check your vehicle’s coolant regularly. This is especially important before drastic weather changes. To check the coolant on your vehicle, you will have to check for the clear overflow plastic container near the radiator. If you see the liquid level below the minimum line, then you will want to fill the container with a 50/50 mix of water and antifreeze.

Brake Fluid

When people think about their brakes, they tend to overlook the brake fluid. However, brake fluid is one of the most important parts of your vehicle’s braking system. Without proper braking fluid, your vehicle will not have the proper amount of braking power. To check your vehicle’s brake fluid, check the reservoir is on top of the master cylinder. The clear reservoir should be marked with minimum and maximum lines. If you see a low level in the reservoir, then fill up the container with brake fluid up to the maximum lines. Also, if the level is low, then you should check for any brake fluid leaks. Brake fluid leaks will appear as a light yellow puddle under the vehicle.

Note that it is dangerous to drive a vehicle with a brake fluid leak. If you do notice a leak, then it is highly recommended that you do not drive the vehicle and have it towed to a service center.

 

Power Steering Fluid

Have you ever had trouble turning a vehicle? This is usually because there was an issue with the vehicle’s power steering system. One of the critical parts of your vehicle’s power steering system is its power steering fluid. To check the power steering fluid level, look for the small tank is located near the firewall, at the windshield’s base. Check to see if the fluid is between the minimum and the maximum levels. If the power steering fluid is below the minimum level, then add more fluid until the level is between the minimum and maximum levels. Also, now is a good time to check for any power steering leaks. Be sure to look under your vehicle for any red or brownish puddles. If you have a power steering leak, then you should have the vehicle checked by a certified technician as soon as possible. Driving with a power steering fluid leak can make it hard to control your vehicle and make evasive driving more difficult.

Differential Fluid

Now here’s one type of vehicle fluid that you don’t think about every day. However, differential fluid is important for enabling the drive wheels to spin at the right speed when you step on the gas pedal and at different rates when you turn a corner to a turn. You can check your vehicle’s differential fluid by jacking up your vehicle at the rear if it is a rear-wheel-drive vehicle or at the front if it is a front-wheel-drive vehicle. If you have a four-wheel or all-wheel-drive vehicle, then you will have to jack up the vehicle on all four wheels. From there, look for the differential “pumpkin” tank and open the filler cap. After the filler cap is open, stick your index finger in the opening and bend your finger down. If your finger does not touch and gear oil, then you will need to add differential fluid.

Washer Fluid

Finally, you will want to check your vehicle’s washer fluid levels. Now, most people don’t think that the washer fluid is a big deal. However, if you happen to be driving in the rain, sleet, or snow, then you want to make sure that you can properly clean off your vehicle. Also, bug splatter can easily obstruct your view from outside the windshield. You can check your vehicle’s washer fluid level by looking for The washer fluid container will be under the hood. Check to make sure that the washer fluid level is above the minimum line. If not, be sure to fill up the container. Also, be aware that you should use a “winter mix” during cold weather. That’s because conventional washer fluid can freeze up in temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.

Check Your Vehicle’s Fluids

Checking your vehicle’s fluids is important to the overall maintenance of your vehicle. One of the best ways to check up on your fluids is to run a check with every other gas fill-up. If you notice any low levels, be sure to add fluid to your vehicle right away. If you want expert help in adding fluid to your vehicle, then be sure to visit our service center at Federico CDJR. We have a top team of Mopar®-trained technicians who can provide fast and affordable fluid service for your vehicle.