Your Car Might Be Leaking Oil Because Of A Cracked Gasket

After parking your car for an extended period, you might back up only to notice a pool of oil. If your vehicle is leaking oil, this is a problem you shouldn't ignore because your car might not have enough oil to function correctly and can become damaged. In many cases, the problem is the result of a bad gasket. Unfortunately, figuring out why your vehicle is leaking oil might be challenging without taking it to an auto service technician.

Why Your Car Needs Oil

The oil in your car plays an essential role in protecting your vehicle. The oil lubricates the parts and reduces friction. It also prevents your vehicle from overheating. Without enough oil, your engine will eventually fail.

The Role of the Valve Cover Gasket

The valve cover gasket is vital in keeping the oil inside your car. It also protects the engine from leaking oil. You might notice an oil leak underneath your car, and your vehicle might also have a burning smell when accelerating. Your engine might also misfire. 

How to Determine if the Gasket Is Defective

A technician will inspect the area around the gasket to ensure no oil is seeping out. Even if only a tiny amount of oil is seeping, the problem will worsen.

Because the oil is seeping out, your engine will not have enough oil. Adding more oil won't solve the problem because it will simply leak out.

Your engine might start to misfire as a result of a leaking gasket. The valve cover sits above a set of spark plugs. The leaking oil can enter the openings and cause build-up. When this occurs, the spark plugs fail, reducing the ignition. You might even start an engine fire.

Why the Gasket Needs to Be Replaced

While the gasket is vital in protecting your car, it is only a thin piece of rubber. As it becomes old, it will become brittle and crack. It might also wear out prematurely if your engine is hot.

The Repair Process

To replace the gasket, the technician removes the valve cover first. The gasket itself is inexpensive, but replacing it mainly involves labor costs.

The valve cover itself might also need to be replaced. If so, the technician can replace the cover at the same time that it replaces the gasket. You will simply be charged extra for the valve cover. Then, your car shouldn't leak oil anymore. 

For more info, visit a local shop that offers VW auto services