Transmission fluid is colored green or red so it can be distinguished from other fluids in the vehicle. While it may not be especially dangerous to drive a vehicle that is leaking transmission fluid, it is not a good idea because the vehicle may not run properly. When considering the safety of driving with a transmission fluid leak, here are some things to know:
One of the main causes of a transmission fluid leak is a gap in your transmission. This is hard to narrow down as it could be a space in a pan gasket, torque converter, fluid lines, the transmission pan, or the seals. It can be difficult to narrow down, so it is best to have a mechanic inspect your vehicle.
Once you notice transmission fluid in your driveway, even if it is a small amount, you need to get the leak repaired. If it is left alone, the problem will get worse over time. Eventually, the transmission will fail if the leak is not fixed. A smaller leak is a simpler fix than a bigger one, so get it fixed before it becomes a big leak.
A car leaking transmission fluid can be caused by a leak in the pan. This can happen through wear and tear over time. The pan can be punctured or the plugs may not be tightened properly. Either way, if you notice transmission fluid, contact a mechanic so they can inspect and repair the fluid leak.
A leak in the fluid lines can also be damaged by debris in the road. Furthermore, heat can cause cracks in the lines creating a leak as well. This drains the transmission fluid pretty fast, so it is best to go directly to the mechanic’s shop if this happens.
Loose or broken seals can cause a leak in the transmission as well. There are various seals throughout the transmission, so it takes time to find the correct leaking seal. A mechanic has the right equipment to diagnose the problem in a timely manner.
While it is not especially dangerous to continue driving with a leaking transmission fluid in the short-term, it is advisable to have this issue repaired immediately to take care of your car for the long-term. As soon as you notice your car is leaking transmission fluid, you should seek to contact a certified mechanic, such as on from YourMechanic, to have your transmission fluid serviced. The faster you get the leak fixed, the less problems you will have with your vehicle in the future.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Is it Safe to Drive When a Car is Leaking Transmission Fluid? and was authored by Valerie Johnston.