What color is power steering fluid?

What color is power steering fluid? There is nothing more disconcerting than walking away from your car that appears to be in mint condition, only to return to discover a puddle of mysterious fluid pooling under it. This does not bode well for your car and is usually a sign of a fluid leak. While the fluid can be anything from motor oil to power steering fluid, at Oxmoor Toyota we created this detailed list to help you identify exactly what is leaking from your car.


A car is a complex piece of machinery that uses many fluids to function properly. While any of these fluids can leak from time to time, the color and texture can help identify which fluid is leaking. When your car has a fluid leak, you may need to make an appointment with your mechanic so you don’t find yourself stuck on the side of the road waiting for a tow truck and an unwelcome and disturbingly high repair bill. With that in mind, here are some of the identifying characteristics of the fluids that keep your car running smoothly.

red fluid

There are two fluids used by your vehicle that are red. These are automatic transmission fluid and power steering. Both are hydraulic fluids. You’ll want to check your owner’s manual to see if your vehicle, like some others, actually uses automatic transmission fluid in its power steering system.

The color of the power steering fluid will be affected by time. If fresh it will be red, but as time passes it will turn reddish brown before turning antique brown. You can identify power steering fluid through other attributes, such as its oily feel and thin consistency. It also has the scent of burnt marshmallows.

Automatic transmission fluid is also red when new. As the miles progress, it will change to a reddish-brown color. It is slippery to the touch and smells of petroleum. If you suspect your transmission fluid is leaking, you’ll need to schedule a transmission inspection.

Light yellow

If you see yellow fluid leaking from your vehicle, don’t drive it. The fluid leaking from your car is probably brake fluid. When fresh, brake fluid is light yellow in color, but darkens as it ages. If not maintained, it can even look like a dark brown. If you touch it, you will notice its oily and slippery feeling. It also has a rather distinctive smell like fish oil. You should call your mechanic immediately so that the brake system can have a good service. You may need to repair or even replace your brake lines.

Orange Fluid

Automatic transmission coolant and fluid may be orange in color. When the coolant is orange in color, it may be a sign that rust has built up in your car’s cooling system. If you smell something sweet and feel something slimy, the leaking fluid is most likely coolant. One of the main causes of engine damage is coolant loss, so if you have a coolant leak, you’ll need to take your car to the mechanic as soon as possible.

Your automatic transmission fluid appears on this list again because as it ages it can also turn orange. If you’re not sure if you have an automatic transmission or a coolant link, calling your mechanic to have it inspected may only help.

Pink, yellow or green liquid

If you notice a pink, yellow, or green leak, you are witnessing a refrigerant leak. Coolant can also leak from multiple areas of your car’s cooling system. Ignoring a coolant leak is not a wise choice, as it will ultimately cause your car’s engine to overheat. Once the engine gets to that point, you’ll have a pretty hefty bill to pay for repairs. It is always much more profitable to take your car to the workshop to take preventive measures.

blue fluid

There is only one fluid that is blue and that is windshield washer fluid. This thin, watery liquid smells like your everyday window cleaner. It can come in other colors, like green, and while a cracked washer fluid reservoir doesn’t signal the end of your car’s days, it’s a good idea to call your mechanic so he can check it out for you.

brown and black

Motor oil is light brown when first used and darkens each time it passes through your car’s engine, collecting dirt and combustion byproducts in the process. If thick, slippery fluid builds up under your car that looks brown or black, you have a possible motor oil leak on your hands. If your car is only experiencing a small leak, you can avoid any problems by keeping your oil level to max until you have time to take your vehicle in for an inspection, which we recommend doing as soon as possible.


There are two different fluids that are transparent, water and gasoline. If you have water leaking from the underside of your car, you will be able to identify it by touch and a good sniff as well. Fortunately, if it’s just water collecting under your car, you don’t have to worry, as the condensation is most likely simply draining from your air conditioner.

On the other hand, a clear fluid could also be gasoline. Again, you can trust your nose here to pick this fluid out of a lineup. Now, if you can see a gas leak from your car, you’ll need to call your mechanic right away. Do not drive the vehicle until you have been able to speak to a professional.

What color is the power steering fluid? We tell you THREE different colors!

Power steering fluid is an important fluid in your car that helps the power steering system work as it should. Without this part, the steering system would not be able to control your car and therefore the netiehr would not be able to control the driver. Let’s find out the benefits of using this fluid in your car and answer the question “what color is the power steering fluid?”


Power steering fluid is necessary for the power steering system, just like any type of hydraulic fluid that has the primary function of transmitting power from the steering wheel to the car’s steering gear. This fluid helps keep the steering mechanism smooth by protecting the moving parts of this system.

If you don’t use power steering fluid in your car, you are more likely to face serious problems with your car’s fuel pump, steering pump, steering system, or other crucial components that could lead to a crash if not cared for properly. . of and maintained.

Now that you know the importance of power steering fluid, you must be wondering: what color is power steering fluid?

Power Steering Fluid Types

After knowing the importance of power steering fluid, you should know the types of fluid before you find out the color of this fluid. There are certain things to consider before purchasing a fluid for your vehicle, as the right type of fluid depends on the model, make, and year of your car.

You need to see if your make or model of car needs a power steering fluid with particular additives. Consulting your owner’s manual gives you the best idea of ​​what is needed for your specific make and model.

  • Mineral fluids for power steering

Mineral fluids are made with petroleum fractions and additives, which help improve the performance qualities of the oil. The main benefit of using this fluid in your steering system is the impact on the rubber, which helps increase longevity. Also, this liquid is not expensive compared to other types.

  • Although the price is great for the quality you receive, mineral power steering fluid is not as durable as most epx isef options. Because of this, you will need to change your steering fluid more frequently.
  • Semi-synthetic power steering fluid

The second type of power steering fluid is a combination of synthetic and mineral substances. When wondering what color power steering fluid is, you should consider the colors of the mineral and synthetic fluids that make up this semi-synthetic option.

  • Positive aspects of this type of fluid include good lubricating qualities and resistance to foaming.
  • The negative aspects of the use of semi-synthetic power steering fluid is the deterioration of the rubber parts of the steering system during use.
  • Synthetic power steering fluid

The third most common type of power steering fluid sold in auto shops today is synthetic fluid. This is the ideal steering fluid to use if your car manufacturer recommends it. This type of fluid is made with fractions of petroleum, polyesters and special additives that prevent the deterioration of the rubber elements within the steering system.

  • This type of power steering fluid increases the durability of the system by helping the steering parts run smoothly and without friction. Most manufacturers recommend this type of power steering fluid because it has low viscosity, resistance to foaming, and can perform under extreme temperatures.
  • Universal Fluids

Universal power steering fluids are compatible with various power steering systems. These types of power steering fluids offer several benefits, such as reducing stiffness, increasing steering gear liability, preventing corrosion, and reducing wear.

What color is the power steering fluid when it leaks?

Maybe you found that there is a leak in your car but you are not sure where it is coming from. In this case, you should inspect the color of the fluid to determine which part of your vehicle is leaking. As mentioned above, most manufacturers useRED or PINK so that your fluid distinguishes it from other liquids traveling around your car.

Some other brands that produce power steering fluid also make clear versions without any color, which means leaking power steering fluid isCLEAR. Although this is on the market, it is less common than red or pink power steering fluid. If you’re wondering what color power steering fluid is and see red, pink, dark brown, or black, you probably have a power steering fluid leak.

light brown or black

If you see light brown or black when you ask what color your power steering fluid is, there is a chance that this fluid is not coming from your steering system.

  • The most common culprit for light brown or black fluid leaking from your car isMotor oil. This fluid is generally between light brown and deep black, depending on the longevity of the oil and the length of time it has been burned in your car. This type of fluid leak is usually concentrated in the middle of the car when determining the point of origin.
  • The other option for this type of liquid is lubricant oil, especially if the color is more light brown than black. If this leak originates from the rear axle, the lubricating oil is usually the point of origin of this leak.

light yellow or dark brown

When figuring out what color your power steering fluid is, most of the time, the color is NOT yellow. most ofbrake fluids Made on the market today are yellow in color, which means that if you notice a leak of this color in your car, you probably have a brake fluid leak.

  • Examine the yellow or brown fluid to determine if the leak is from engine oil or brake fluid. If the fluid is slippery, it is most likely brake fluid, since motor oil is thick and sludge-like.
  • Remember that a brake fluid leak is a serious problem that must be fixed as soon as possible. Without the correct levels of brake fluid, your car will not be able to stop completely!


If you see red in your car, there is a chance that your power steering fluid is leaking. When you ask what color your power steering fluid is, the answer is usually red or pink, but how can you know for sure?

  • First, inspect the location of the leak. Most of the time, power steering fluid leaks out of the front of your car.
  • Next, see if the red fluid is leaking along the power steering pump or through the reservoir. Touch the liquid and examine the texture; If it’s slippery, the power steering fluid is leaking.


What color is the power steering fluid? is it orange? Most of the time, the orange liquid that leaks comes from thetransmission. Most transmission fluid is colored between light orange or reddish brown, which means that you should inspect the location of the leak to make sure that the fluid is coming from the transmission mechanism and not from the power steering system.

  • Transmission fluid leaks tend to originate from the center of your car.
  • This leak can also be to blame for antifreeze mixing with rust, so you need to find the starting point of the leek to see where the problem is coming from.


If you see clear fluid coming out of your car, there are two possible problems:It could be power steering fluid or water. Sometimes the air conditioner can malfunction and break down over time, leading to excess condensation and moisture escaping.

  • However, in other cases, when wondering what color the power steering fluid is, the answer may be clear. Touch the liquid to feel the consistency; If it’s sticky or has an odor, it’s a sign of a power steering fluid leak.

What color is power steering fluid green?

When you’re wondering what color power steering fluid is, the answer may be green.Fluids with bright colors like green, yellow, or pink are designated for your vehicle’s water cooling systems. Although pink often refers to power steering fluid, it can also be the color of the coolant used for your engine.

  • You can tell these two pink colors apart by analyzing the water pump bearings and the seals, seeing where the leak is originating from.
  • Keep in mind that if your car is older, it may be quite normal for a few drops of coolant to leak from time to time. However, if your car is new, you should investigate your cooling system to determine the source of the leaks and why.

What color is Honda power steering fluid?

Although most power steering fluids are red, pink, or clear when you ask what color power steering fluid is, there are a few exceptions when it comes to manufacturers. Some manufacturers dye their power steering fluid a unique color to make it clear when there is a steering leak. In this case, when asking what color it isHonda power steering fluid, the answer is golden.

What color is a Prestone Power Steering Fluid?

Asking yourself what color a prestone power steering fluid is, you may think the answer is pink, red, or clear, like almost every other manufacturer. However, in this case, the answer is green Over time, the color of your power steering fluid may darken to a dark brown or black, but it originally starts out as a shade of green.

What color is Nissan power steering fluid?

Nissan power steering fluid is RED. Like many other manufacturers that use red, pink, or clear fluid, Nissan goes the traditional route to make it easier to see if power steering fluid is leaking from your vehicle.

What color is Toyota power steering fluid?

Finding the answer to what color Toyota power steering fluid is, drivers should take into account the most common colors of fluids that manufacturers produce on the market today. The most common colors of power steering fluid are red, pink, or clear. Toyota power steering fluid is red. 

What are the 7 liquids in your car?

To determine what color your power steering fluid is, you need to know about the seven different fluids that are used in your vehicle to keep it running at a high level for a long period of time.

  • Petroleum – engine oil is used forlubricate moving parts of the internal combustion engine and other constantly rubbing parts. Without oil, friction would increase and heat would build up, leading to possible overheating and fire hazards.
  • radiator fluid – Radiator fluid, also known as engine coolant, is a mixture of water and antifreeze in your vehicle’s engine. This liquid helpsavoid overheating in very hot climates and avoid freezing in very cold climates.
  • transmission fluid– Transmission fluid is a key part for your transmission to function properly. This fluid is used to lubricate moving parts to keep them running smoothly,helping with rotation speed, temperature range and overheat prevention.
  • Power steering fluid – power steering fluid helptransfer power from the steering wheel to the steering gear vehicle
  • Brake fluid –brake fluid is a non-compressible substance that moves within the brake lines, helpingprovide the necessary forces to stop the car when the brake pedal is depressed. Force is applied to all four corners of the vehicle, decelerating the vehicle evenly and applying pressure.
  • air conditioning refrigerant – air conditioners contain refrigerant, which changes from a low-pressure gas to a high-pressure liquid to helpregulate the temperature of your vehicle.
  • Cleaning fluid – windshield cleaning liquid keep your windshield clean, providing a clear field of vision while driving in inclement weather.

Power Steering Fluid Colors – What Do They Mean?

Unless you drive a manual car, you probably use power steering fluid. It is used in most modern cars with power steering. While you may see newer cars coming out of the electric power steering system, many cars from the last decade consist of a hydraulic power steering system.


Anytime a power steering system is used, it requires power steering fluid to function properly. So what is power steering fluid? What are the colors of the power steering fluid and what do they mean?

What is a power steering fluid?

Power Steering Fluid Types

What color is it?

What happens if your fluid is not effective?

What is power steering fluid?

In a power steering system, power steering fluid is an essential component. As its name suggests, it increases the efficiency of movement and makes steering easier.


In a hydraulic power steering system, the power steering fluid acts as a medium to transfer force from the steering wheel to the road wheels. On the road it multiplies force like any hydraulic system, thus reducing the effort required to steer the car.


The fluid is in a reservoir under the steering column. It is usually on the driver’s side. Identifying it isn’t that hard, as it’s clearly marked “power steering” or “steering fluid.”


Power Steering Fluid Types

Today, we have various types of power steering fluids on the market. Most manufacturers recommend what type of power steering fluid you should use in your car. It’s important to make sure you use the exact type the manufacturers suggest. Let’s look at some commonly used types of power steering fluid.

mineral power steering fluid

Mineral fluids consist of a fraction of petroleum and some other additives. This fluid is especially good for rubber components. It minimizes wear and tear and increases the useful life of the steering system. It is also cheaper compared to many other types of fluids.

The main disadvantage you get from using this fluid is the longevity of the fluid itself. The fluid runs out soon and you would have to replace it regularly.

Semi-synthetic power steering fluid

This is a mix of synthetic fluid and more natural mineral fluid. It forms a color that is a mixture of synthetic and mineral fluids. This is a better lubricant than most other fluids on the market. While good for metal components, it creates more wear for rubber components.

Synthetic power steering fluid

This is the most commonly used power steering fluid today. It is artificially designed to give the best possible effects to the power steering system. Most car manufacturers recommend the use of this particular type of fluid.

This is made of petroleum and a bunch of special polymers. Other additives are used to reduce the deterioration of the rubber. There is not much to complain about with this type of fluid. It is durable and provides excellent results in terms of lubrication. The low viscosity of the fluid makes it effective at low temperatures.

universal fluid

Finally, we have the universal fluid. As the name suggests, the fluid is compatible with many different steering systems. It is also a type of synthetic fluid, as it is artificially designed.

Special additives in this fluid help reduce stiffness while increasing lubricating properties. Some are designed to provide superior defense against corrosion and wear. It can also seal small leaks.

The main problem would be variable viscosity. You need to make sure that you choose the optimal viscosity for your car before using this fluid.

What are the colors of power steering fluid and what do they mean?

It is important to know the color of your car fluids. There are a lot of fluids in your car. Some of them are motor oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, coolant, and of course, steering fluid.

For example, if you find fluid leaking from your car, only by knowing the color will you be able to identify the fluid. And by identifying the fluid, you should be able to figure out what’s wrong with your car. Because of this, different fluids are stained different colors. So what is the color of the power steering fluid?

red or pink

This is the standard color for power steering fluid. Most power steering fluids on the market are tinted red. There are some that are more towards pink as well.

If you see red colored fluid leaking from the car, it is likely the power steering fluid. But if you want to be more sure, you can search for the location of the leak. If it’s at the front of the car and slightly towards the driver’s seat, it’s probably the power steering fluid.

The texture won’t let you know much, but the power steering fluid is a bit slippery. So are many other fluids in your car, as they contribute to reducing friction.

So what does red or pink liquid on your driveway mean? Well, if you have a leak, you need to fix it right away. But the good news is that it’s still working properly and it’s not expired yet.


While red or pink is the standard color for power steering fluid, you have to understand that it arises due to tint. Naturally, the liquid is clear. Some manufacturers choose to keep it exactly as is because they believe that dying the liquid could change its chemical composition. Therefore, it is very likely that the steering fluid is transparent.

dark brown or black

Steering fluid is not manufactured in dark brown or black. This color is assigned to engine oil. Motor oil starts out as a brown liquid. As dust and debris build up in your engine, it changes color to black.

The same is seen in the steering fluid. Although you can pour red colored fluid into the reservoir, over time it will pick up a lot of dirt and debris. This ultimately changes the color of the liquid to brown or black.

If you see your steering fluid in this color, you should change it immediately. At this point, the fluid has been circulating too long in your power steering system. Dirty power steering fluid will not be able to do its tasks properly.

Yellow power steering fluid

If the power steering fluid is yellow, it does not mean it is dirty. So why does the power steering fluid turn yellow? The most likely cause is that the coolant has mixed with the power steering fluid.

This is not a common scenario. But how bad is it?

It’s not really going to affect the power steering much. Unless the ratio of coolant to power steering fluid changes drastically in the direction of the coolant, it will not affect the power steering system detrimentally. But if the refrigerant leaks, you may run out of refrigerant. So you should fix it.

Milky power steering fluid

This is the worst possible color you could find in your steering fluid. If your liquid is milky or foamy, it means that air is trapped in the liquid. Instead of being slippery, the steering fluid may be viscous.

If this were the case, you should take immediate action. Drain the fluid as soon as possible and replace it.

Once it turns milky or foamy, it is no longer favorable within your steering system. You will start to hear bumps in the steering and steering will require more effort than usual. In severe cases, the steering wheel could stick midway.

What to remove from the color of the steering fluid

As long as your steering fluid is red or clear, you should be fine. The fluid changes color as it becomes contaminated. Over time and the accumulation of dirt and other impurities, the fluid will turn a darker color. This is an indicator to change the steering fluid.

If the steering fluid is white, milky or foamy, it is contaminated with water or air. This would also indicate that it is time to replace the steering fluid.

If you discover the color of your steering fluid through a leak, you should consider repairing the leak. Although it may not have an immediate effect, the system could eventually wear out. Without lubrication, you would risk severe damage to the steering system.

Some newer manufacturers tint their steering fluid a shade of green. This does not mean that your steering fluid is bad. In short, if you find that your steering fluid is dark or milky in color, you should change it immediately.

How to replace steering fluid?

Now that you know which colors of power steering fluid are bad, you might consider replacing your power steering fluid. Do you need a mechanic to do this job? Replacing the steering fluid is not a difficult task. Equipped with the right knowledge, you can do it yourself.

Let’s break down the entire power steering fluid replacement procedure.

Step 1 – Preparation

First, you need to find the most appropriate power steering fluid for your car. Different manufacturers suggest different types of steering fluids. The proper fuel would be mentioned in the owner’s manual. If you can’t find your owner’s manual, you should be able to look it up on the Internet.

Now that you have the proper fluid, you need to locate the steering fluid reservoir in the car. Open the hood. You should be able to make out the deposit easily.

Step 2 – Drain the Old Fluid

Use a jack to raise the front of your car so you can get under it. Take a container to empty the old liquid. Crawl under the car and drain the old fluid.

If you can’t get all the fluid out, turn the steering wheel to either side. This will cause any remaining liquid inside to drip out.

Step 3 – Add the New Liquid

Now use a funnel to fill the reservoir with the new fluid. Be sure to pour the fluid until it reaches the proper level.

Step 4: Double Check

Remove the jack and bring the rear to ground level. Start the engine and let it run for a few seconds. Try turning the steering wheel left and right to check if it works smoothly. Take it out for a short trip if necessary. Recheck fluid levels.

If you find this post about What color is power steering fluid helpful to you and you want to know more about car fluid knowledge, please check more on our website Auto Oil And Fluid. Thank you for your interest!



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