What Color Is Transmission Fluid?

Hand Pouring Transmission Fluid

Your car requires a wide variety of essential fluids to run properly, from motor oil to windshield fluid to brake fluid. One of the most vital fluids in your vehicle is transmission fluid, which, as the name suggests, helps keep your transmission in top condition. Since your car’s transmission is essentially what makes it move on the Normal roads, keeping the transmission fluid healthy is very important. When transmission fluid is a translucent, dark-red color, that means it’s working properly. However, if it starts turning other colors, that could indicate a problem with your vehicle. Learn more with the service team at Leman's Chevrolet City Llc in the guide below!

Transmission Fluid Color Guide

While your transmission fluid starts out as a dark color, it will darken even more due to age and vehicle use. This is perfectly normal, but it means that if you start to see your transmission fluid get darker and darker, you should replace it with new fluid. Your transmission fluid can also darken if it starts to get unwanted contaminants into it. Here’s a basic transmission fluid color guide:

  • Brand-new fluid: Dark red
  • Normal: Darker brick red
  • Service your vehicle soon: Deep blood red/rust red
  • Service your vehicle immediately: Burnt/almost black

Is Red Fluid Leaking From Your Car?

If you’re driving around Decatur and notice red fluid leaking from your car, it’s most likely related to a transmission leak. However, there are other telltale signs:

  • Odor: While transmission fluid normally smells like petroleum, it’ll start to smell burnt if it needs to be changed. If you start smelling something burning while you’re driving, you might have a transmission fluid leak.
  • Consistency: Transmission fluid has an oily, slick consistency to it, similar to engine oil or brake fluid.
  • Location of the leak: Transmission fluid leaks tend to occur in the front middle of the car near where the transmission is located.

Keeping Your Transmission in Top Condition

There are a few steps you can take to keep your transmission in top condition and prevent future problems or leaks:

  • Choose the right fluid. Not all transmissions run on the same fluid, especially as more and more advanced automatic transmission systems become available. Make sure you use the right fluid and genuine OEM parts whenever you can.
  • Follow your owner’s manual. Your owner’s manual will tell you the right kind of fluid for your specific make and model, as well as the service schedule you should stick to.
  • Keep up with transmission service: Keeping up with your vehicle’s regularly-scheduled maintenance is a good way to fix any problems that arise with your car before they become severe.

Turn to Leman's Chevrolet City Llc for Your Service Needs

If you notice a problem with your transmission fluid color, or if you spot a leak, go ahead and schedule a service appointment with Leman's Chevrolet City Llc, and we’ll get you back on the Springfield roads in no time! You can also contact us with any questions or for more information about keeping your car running in top condition on the road. Be sure to check out our service specials if you’re interested in saving on your next appointment.


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