What kind of fluid is this? 2000 Toyota Camry

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by determined09, Nov 30, 2014.

  1. determined09 macrumors 65816

    determined09

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    Location:
    North America
    #1
    I've been to my car repair person already and they weren't able to locate the leak. My care doesn't leak this fluid everyday. Here's s photo of the fluid. It's a 2000 Toyota camry LE 4 cylinder with219,000 miles. Any suggestions.
    Thank you.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Peace macrumors Core

    Peace

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Location:
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    #2
    What area under the car is it ? Front ? Middle ? Rear End ?
     
  3. determined09 thread starter macrumors 65816

    determined09

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    Location:
    North America
    #3
    The front area!
     
  4. webbuzz, Nov 30, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2014

    webbuzz macrumors 65816

    webbuzz

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2010
    #4
    Hard to tell from the picture, but it looks like oil.

    eta: The upper left part looks like condensation from the AC, looks clear. I get the same thing from using defrost, which uses the AC.

    This looks pink/reddish, to the left of the main spot.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Aspasia macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2011
    Location:
    Halfway between the Equator and North Pole
    #5
    Dumb question, but have you checked the levels of the various fluids (brake, steering, etc.) under the hood?
     
  6. Peace macrumors Core

    Peace

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Location:
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    #6
    What I was thinking was dirty radiator fluid.
     
  7. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    CT
    #7
    I am going to go with coolant or steering.

    Without more to go on everyone will just be throwing out guesses.
     
  8. D.T. macrumors 604

    D.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Vilano Beach, FL
    #8
    Looks like coolant, could be power steering or brake fluid. All three could have a very light reddish tint.

    Like someone said above, you could get a good level check, then re-check the next time you have notable fluid loss.

    If you get down and give it a good smell, you can sometimes ID the fluid. Brake fluid has an organic, oily smell with a faint fishy aroma, and while PS fluid will also smell like oil, it’ll have a burnt smell (and not really any fishiness). Coolant has a sweet smell, it’s pretty distinctive vs. the other two.

    You’re probably running “red” coolant, but you can check the color, and if it’s actually green (or another color), you might be able to cross that off the list as the source (the fluid in the photo does seem to have a slight red/rusty hue).

    Is the car intermittently running hot? Does is make odd noises when you turn the wheel? (especially at full lock) Do your brakes feel like they’re traveling much further down in the stroke on occasion? Ever see white smoke?
     
  9. determined09 thread starter macrumors 65816

    determined09

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    Location:
    North America
    #9
    No my car isn't running hot. What does down in the stroke on occasion mean? I'm sorry I'm confused. Thank you. No I don't see any white smoke.
     
  10. PracticalMac macrumors 68030

    PracticalMac

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #10
    The only way to know for sure is put something impermeable, like a aluminum oven liner that has a large area to catch the drips, then take that to the shop.
     
  11. waloshin macrumors 68040

    waloshin

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    #11
    Looks like red power steering fluid, or possibly red anti freeze or even condensation from A/C.
     
  12. sim667 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    #12
    Its not window washer liquid is it? The one I use is a pinky colour.
     
  13. luvmymbpr macrumors regular

    luvmymbpr

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2014
    #13
    This is not a dumb question. You definitely need to check fluids if you see a leak that doesn't look like just water from the air conditioning.
     
  14. Peace macrumors Core

    Peace

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Location:
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    #14
    One of the best ways to find out where it is coming from is to place a piece of cardboard under the engine area overnight.

    In the morning check out the spots where it was leaking.

    ;)
     
  15. johnnyturbouk macrumors 68000

    johnnyturbouk

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    Location:
    on the yellow [oled] brick road to tech nirvana.
    #15
    fluid, rear end <quickly sneaks out of this forum discussion :p>
     
  16. determined09 thread starter macrumors 65816

    determined09

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    Location:
    North America
    #16
    It was the radiator that had been leaking all this time. It's already been replaced. Thank you everyone for your help/
     
  17. wct097 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2010
    #17
    When in doubt.... taste it. :D

    Seriously though. If I see an odd fluid from my vehicle that I can't quickly visually identify, a quick taste test will typically narrow it down pretty easily. Not talking about licking the pavement here or taking a gulp, just rub a finger in it and touch it to your tongue.

    You're going to find 4 main types of fluid leaks.
    Condensation - no flavor other than the dirt on the ground
    Coolant - sticky with a sickly sweet flavor (why animals like to drink it even though it kills them)
    Oil - tastes like is smells, usually a charred burnt taste
    Hydraulic fluid - oily, but distinctly different from motor oil, very sharp (brake fluid, power steering fluid)

    Can also rub it between two fingers and look for identifying properties. Is it oily? Probably hydraulic fluid or motor oil.
     
  18. pvmacguy macrumors 65816

    pvmacguy

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2009
    Location:
    Jax
    #18
    Check your fluids... If that is indeed oil it seems like a lot and you are probably pretty low. I would top it off and get to the shop asap if you are not mechanically inclined to DIY.

    IMO it looks like either coolant or powersteering/brake. Do your brakes feel spongy? Steering stiff and hard to turn?
     
  19. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO

Share This Page