Fluid Check 101: Complete Guide to Vital Vehicle Fluids


Regular maintenance is crucial to ensure the optimal performance and longevity of your vehicle. Among the essential maintenance tasks is checking and refilling vital fluids. In this comprehensive guide, we will cover everything you need to know about fluid level checks, fluid maintenance, fluid inspection, fluid top-up, and fluid replenishment. Specifically, we will focus on checking oil levels, as oil is one of the most critical fluids in your vehicle.

Checking Engine Oil

Engine oil plays a vital role in lubricating the engine components, reducing friction, and dissipating heat. To check the engine oil level, follow these steps:

  1. Park your vehicle on level ground and turn off the engine.
  2. Locate the dipstick, usually marked with a bright-coloured handle.
  3. Pull out the dipstick, wipe it clean with a cloth, and reinsert it fully.
  4. Pull out the dipstick again and observe the oil level. It should fall within the designated range. If it's low, it's time to add oil.

Refilling Engine Oil

To top up engine oil, follow these steps:

  1. Determine the recommended oil type and viscosity for your vehicle by consulting the owner's manual.
  2. Remove the oil filler cap and use a funnel to pour in the oil gradually.
  3. Check the oil level using the dipstick to ensure it reaches the appropriate range.
  4. Recap the oil filler cap securely.

How to Check Transmission Fluid:

To check your vehicle's transmission fluid:

  1. Park on a level surface.
  2. Locate the transmission dipstick.
  3. Pull out the dipstick, wipe it clean, and reinsert it.
  4. Remove it again and check the fluid level and condition.

How to Check Hydraulic Fluid:

To check the hydraulic fluid in your vehicle:

  1. Locate the hydraulic fluid reservoir.
  2. Remove the cap and visually inspect the fluid level.
  3. Ensure the fluid is within the recommended range.
  4. If needed, add the appropriate hydraulic fluid to maintain the proper level.

Other Vital Fluids

Apart from engine oil, there are other crucial fluids to check regularly:

1. Coolant: Check the coolant level in the radiator expansion tank. Ensure the engine is cool before removing the cap.

2. Brake Fluid: Locate the brake fluid reservoir and check the level against the "min" and "max" markings.

3. Power Steering Fluid: Locate the power steering fluid reservoir and check the level.

Fluid Maintenance Tips

To keep your vehicle's fluids in optimal condition, consider the following tips:

  1. Follow the manufacturer's recommendations regarding fluid change intervals.
  2. Inspect fluids for any signs of contamination, such as discolouration or a milky appearance, and consult a professional if necessary.
  3. Regularly inspect hoses, connections, and seals for leaks or damage.
  4. Always use the recommended fluid type and viscosity as specified by the manufacturer.


Maintaining proper fluid levels and replenishing them when necessary is vital for your vehicle's health and performance. Regularly checking and refilling fluids such as engine oil, coolant, brake fluid, transmission fluid, and power steering fluid will help prevent damage, ensure smooth operation, and extend the lifespan of your vehicle. By following this complete guide, you can confidently carry out fluid checks and top-ups, keeping your vehicle in optimal condition for years to come.

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    Vehicle Maintenance
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    Checking and refilling fluids
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