Do you have a leak from your Freelander?

Are you finding it difficult to identify what type of fluid is leaking?

Engine oil is usually brown or amber. The older it gets, the blacker it seems to turn. If you see a blackish fluid under your vehicle, it’s likely to be engine oil. Engine oil usually has a slippery feel when you rub it between your fingers. Sometimes it can have a distinctive odour, like old coffee.

If your Freelander is automatic then the automatic transmission fluid is red; as it gets older it can appear brown to very dark brown, hence it can get confused with engine oil.

If your Freelander is manual then the manual transmission fluid is amber, and hence can again get confused with engine oil. It is fairly unusual for the manual gearbox to leak.

The coolant in your Freelander should be red or orange (if it is blue or green you should be thinking about replacing it for red coolant), If this is leaking it will leave a pink residue behind.

Differential oil is again amber and so can be confused with engine oil. If you have an oil leak at the rear of your Freelander it is likely to be the rear differential. If it is at the front it could be the IRD, generally this oil has quite a pungent smell to it.

Brake fluid is a clear amber which turns brownish with age. A brake fluid leak can happen anywhere along the Freelander and these are dangerous.

The Freelander 2 power steering fluid is green colour, so can be a little easier to identify. The Freelander 1 power steering fluid is red.

Petrol leaks can be generally be identified by the distinctive odour that petrol has. Note that petrol evaporates so you may not see any evidence of the fuel itself. Petrol leaks are obviously very dangerous.

Diesel fuel is closer to oil than it is to petrol. It also has a distinctive odour and feels slick between your fingers like oil does. Diesel is not as volatile as petrol but is still a dangerous leak to have.

Water leaks, particularly when it rains, are another type of leak that can be very frustrating – especially when the rear secret compartment keeps filling with water (this, by the way, is the tailgate door seal) or you get a wet head from the sunroof. Water, of course, is clear and odourless.

If you are trying to identify a leak on your Freelander it may be as well to put a piece of cardboard underneath overnight and see where, what colour and consistency and how much fluid leaks out.


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