Tips on Keeping Fuel Out of Your Engine Oil
To most, the workings of a car engine are a mysterious process. Most of us are well-trained however, to notice when fuel has seeped into or out of areas it doesn’t belong. Because gas has such a strong odor, it’s easy to determine when its found a way into other areas of the vehicle. Finding gas in engine oil is not an unusual occurrence. Here are some tips on how to deal with this scenario and how to avoid it in the future.
Why Fuel Leaks Into Engine Oil
The piston rings in your engine are seals that push very tightly along the cylinder walls. Among other things, the rings help stop gasoline from leaking through the pistons and into the engine’s oil reserves. The seals the piston rings create however, are far from perfect, so a trivial amount of gas in engine oil is perfectly normal. This small amount of gasoline will not cause any issues whatsoever. But when the seal is broken and larger quantities of gas seep in, it can create a dangerous situation and precautions must be immediately taken.
How to Know if There is too much Gas in Your Oil
If you detect a very strong odor of gasoline as your drive your vehicle, further inspection is critical to your safety. Look under the hood and inspect your engine oil reserves first and foremost. If the smell of gas is coming from this area, you likely have a piston ring leak. Additionally, if you notice white puffy clouds of smoke exiting out your tailpipe as you drive, this is another indication that fuel has found its way inside your engine oil.
What to do if Fuel Amounts in Your Engine Oil are Excessive
If you have a high volume of gasoline in your oil, to the extent that you can clearly smell the fuel levels, you’ll need to take the car in to a mechanic. Simply changing the oil won’t fix the issue that caused the fuel leak to begin with. Only an expert can get your engine back in good running shape. This is not only a problem which might cause the car not to run correctly, it is also a safety issue.
Change Engine Oil Regularly
One way to prevent excessive fuel leaks in your oil is to change out your oil regularly. Most vehicles advise oil changes at least every three to five months, or every 3,000 to 5,000 miles, whatever comes first. Frequent oil changes provide fresh oil for your engine, and helps to clean out any older, smaller fuel leaks. This provides overall health for your vehicle.
Check Pistons First
If you suspect your oil has too much gasoline in the mix, check the health of your pistons first. Replacing the piston rings and the oil immediately may solve the problem. If you are adept at changing out the rings, do so yourself, along with an oil change and monitor the results right away. If gas is still seeping into your oil, see your mechanic immediately. Fuel injectors, compression tests, and spark plugs are all other possible culprits, so ask to have each tested and evaluated.
Possible Causes for Fuel Mixing with Oil
Excessive amounts of gasoline may find its way into the engine oil as a result of piston ring malfunction. Additionally, faulty fuel injectors can cause gas to flood into the oil. Be mindful that the fuel pressure in your automobile is not too high as well, as that can cause smaller leaks. There are a multitude of possibilities, which is why it’s advisable to see an expert as soon you as recognize the issue.
While a small amount of engine fuel mixed in with your car’s oil reserves is a natural occurrence, an excessive presence of gasoline indicates a larger problem. Fuel leaks are caused by anything from carburetors to fuel injectors and piston rings, so unless you’re an engine expert, see a mechanic for accurate diagnosis and repair. Remember to seek regular oil changes and to use high quality fuel in your car as well.