What Is the Difference Between a Fluid Change & a Fluid Flush?

Your car houses several fluids to keep internal components lubricated and enable systems to work correctly. The six essential fluids of every vehicle are engine oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, radiator coolant, and windshield wiper fluid. If these fluids run out or the fluid itself is not in good shape, your vehicle could exhibit significant problems.


Fluid Maintenance

It is highly recommended that you check your fluids regularly. The most common fluid maintenance service is an oil change. Other fluids usually don't need to be refilled or replaced as often.

You may hear a couple of different terms regarding fluid maintenance: fluid change and fluid flush. Sometimes, the average person uses these terms interchangeably, but there is a major difference between the two automotive services.


Fluid Change vs. Fluid Flush

A fluid change is a simple process. It involves draining the fluid currently in the pan or reservoir and replacing it with new fluid. In oil changes and transmission services, filters are also renewed during the fluid change. This service is generally all you will need if your fluid levels are getting low or the fluid is losing viscosity. 


On the other hand, a fluid flush is a much more complicated process. Metaphorically speaking, it is more like a complete blood transfusion for a car; it is commonly necessitated when there is a lot of corrosion, gunk, debris, or even clogs in the lines. Corrupted fluid can lead to significant damage if it is left in the reservoir for long. During a full-on fluid flush, all the liquid is drained from the entire system. Afterward, the lines are flushed and cleaned out before adding clean fluid.


As you may guess, a fluid flush will cost you more than a standard fluid change. However, it is very much worth considering for your vehicle's overall health and performance. If your mechanic recommends a complete fluid flush, it usually means they are seriously concerned - it is not something to take lightly. 


Our mechanics can give you their expert advice on whether you need a change or a flush. If you require fluid maintenance, visit Kamphaus Auto Care and Emissions today. 


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