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Why Do I Smell Burning Engine Oil?

Why Do I Smell Burning Oil?

What’s that smell?  Do you smell burning oil coming from your engine? There are many reasons why your car might smell like burning oil.  Usually it’s due to engine oil landing on something hot and burning off.  This could be from a sloppy oil change or a variety of engine oil leaks.  One of the more common reasons is a leaking valve cover gasket.  The valve cover gasket loses its seal and engine oil leaks onto the exhaust manifold and burns.  Smoke can then waft into the cabin.    

Is it safe to drive my vehicle with a leaking valve cover gasket? The short answer is No.  Your vehicle is losing engine oil.  If your car drives too long without engine oil it can do serious damage.  If the leak is small and your vehicle has the proper amount of engine oil you can drive until you have the means to fix, but should be high priority.

What caused the valve cover gasket to break? There are lots of reasons a gasket can lose its seal.  It could be cracked or rotten.  The valve cover itself may be cracked.  Maybe a bolt is too loose.  Best plan is to have it checked out by an automotive professional and fixed. 


If you are experiencing a burning engine oil smell in your car please call us today to schedule an inspection.  Troubles with your oiling system could lead to permanent damage to your engine. 



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