Why There Is Water Leaking From Your Car

Imagine pulling up your car from parking and noticing a pool of water. Water leaking from the engine can be a scary thing, especially for new drivers and send them into a panic mob for no reason. The good news is; water leaking from the engine is never a serious issue to worry about since it is very normal. This article explains all that you need to know about water in the engine and when to worry if you notice leakage. Normal water leakage will be noticed when you see a clear odorless liquid dripping from the engine. However, if you had parked the car in the dark, it may be hard to differentiate it from other coloured liquids. Damp the liquid with a piece of cloth and note the colour just to be sure it is water.

Why is it Important to have water in the engine?

Every driver is always super conscious when it comes to checking the levels of water in the radiator. This is because water is very important due to the role it plays in cooling the engine. When a car is driven for a long time the engine overheats and hence requires something to keep the water temperatures in check. Overheating can make a car’s engine stall or even explode when it is too much. Water cools the engine by circulating in the engine continuously; the cooling process is therefore continuous. This avoids engine damage.

Water is not used alone for cooling as it was in the older days; it is mixed with a coolant for effective cooling of the engine. A coolant ensures that water is maintained at the correct temperatures even when there is a change in the weather patterns. Overheating is dangerous in your car because:

  • It encourages the breaking down of fluids in your car engine like oil and coolants
  • Will reduce the horsepower of your car
  • Causes pre-ignition which destroys the piston
  • Accelerates tear and wear in the engine parts

In advanced engine machines, the mist of water is used for cooling since a cooler engine runs more efficiently. The water from the radiator is further passed through a separate intake port with an injector so that it comes out as steam.  The mist on the engine parts evaporates so fast that it does not mix with the fuel. This ensures that there are no water leaks in the engine enhancing engine performance

How is the water level checked?

Engine water levels should only be checked when the engine is cold and the bonnet well-secured. The driver/ mechanic locates the coolant reservoir, opens the cap and checks water levels to ensure it is between the minimum and maximum level marks. If this is not the case, the water should be filled up. In a case where the driver cannot locate the coolant reservoir, they should call their mechanic or any car professional to direct them or just drive the car to a garage for these check-ups.

Why water is leaking from my car

In most cases, water leaking from your car is never a big problem. It should never be a major cause of concern but you can never kill the curiosity around it since it can get worrying. Here are some reasons:

  • When the Air Conditioning system has some condensation coming from it, water drips from the car. The drips form a puddle when the car is parked since the drops fall on one point for a long time.
  • When exhaust condensation happens water will drip from the tailpipe which should not send you into panic mode.
  • Water can be added to the windshield wiper fluid reservoir to increase the time of use of the wiper fluid. If the reservoir cracks, water may be seen dripping from it through the engine. The cracks in the reservoir may occur when the water in the reservoir freezes during winter and melts when heat comes back. The sudden expansion and contraction acks.

However, when you find a pool of fluid underneath your car, it may be hard to determine exactly which fluid is leaking. Carry out the following steps in ensuring that the liquid dripping is water:

  • Get a piece of white cloth or white paper and place it on the path of water leaking. If it is a clear liquid the liquid is water. If the fluid is green, pink, green or dark brown then it is more likely to be a coolant. Take the necessary action immediately.
  • Apart from water leaking from your engine, it could also be dripping from the exhaust pipe more than what is considered normal. It could be a case of a broken gasket which exposes the coolant and will most likely mix with the fuel. With large amounts of water dripping, white smoke is seen coming from the exhaust pipe. Attention should be brought to the engine to correct the issue on the blown-up gasket before it causes larger damage to the engine.

What to do to stop water leaking from your engine

Water condensing from the air conditioning or exhaust condensation should never be an issue to worry about since it will eventually stop and it cannot harm your car engine. However, it is important to carry out the test described above just to be sure it is water-dripping and not a coolant. If the water volume is large, the gasket could be broken hence immediate action should be taken to fix that.


Water leaking from your engine is not a serious problem in most cases. It is just water condensing from the Air Conditioning system and it will eventually stop. It could also be from exhaust condensation which should not worry you at all. With small drips, there should be no cause for alarm. However, large amounts of clear liquid dripping that there is a problem and the car should be checked by a professional immediately.