When Your Car Is Burning Oil: What It Means And What You Need To Do

If you've been driving long enough, you've seen a car with what seems to be a cloud of smoke trailing behind it. In many instances, this is the case of a vehicle that is burning oil. Even worse, you might be dealing with this very issue yourself now. If so, questions about what burning oil actually means are probably fresh on your mind. Here are some tips to help you understand what this means and how to get to the bottom of the problem.

What Burning Oil Means

Burning oil means exactly what it sounds like – your vehicle is burning oil. This issue arises when the oil you put inside your engine escapes and leaks out around the exterior of the engine. As the oil seeps out and comes in contact with the hot surface of the engine, this causes it to burn, leading to the smoke you see.

The main cause behind this problem is generally a faulty seal. When the seals around the valve that holds the oil start to fail, the oil can escape out. The longer the oil leaks out, the faster the rate the seals wear, allowing more and more oil to escape. In most cases, repairing the seals will correct the problem.  

Taking Action

When it comes to burning oil, smoke should be the least of your concern. The main thing you should be worried about is the low oil level in your engine. Engines need oil to function efficiently.

When they don't have enough oil, they can easily overheat, which is a leading cause for engine failure. If your vehicle is burning oil, you can also assume that the engine is operating with less oil than is necessary and your engine is at risk.

Don't Just Look For Smoke

It's helpful to realize that a vehicle can be burning oil even if there isn't a thick cloud of smoke behind it. Instead, if you find yourself addressing a low oil level warning level light every few days and you don't have a leak on your hands, burning oil is often the culprit.

Don't assume that just because there isn't smoke it's not that serious of an issue. This is just as important of a problem and should be addressed.

If you are experiencing this issue, make sure you are taking your vehicle into an auto repair shop like Car And Truck Services Inc. as soon as possible. This is a serious issue that will only get worse overtime, leading to costly and extensive repairs. Don't cause further damage to the vehicle by ignoring repairs.