Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Is it Safe to Drive With an Oil Leak?

Oil Leak

Oil lubricates the engine, and is an essential part of your vehicle. Oil reduces corrosion, helps to cool the engine, and reduces the wear on moving parts. If you notice a black puddle under your vehicle, you may have an oil leak. This should not be ignored, and should be checked out by a mechanic as soon as possible.

Here are some things to know about the common signs and dangers of driving with an oil leak:

  • An oil leak that is left alone can cause seals or rubber hoses to wear prematurely. Furthermore, oil leaks are a fire hazard and can cause your vehicle to fail without warning. If the oil catches fire or the engine fails while you are driving, there is potential for injury to yourself and others.

  • One way to check for an oil leak is to look at your oil dip stick on a regular basis. If your oil drops over time, chances are you have an oil leak. Once you notice the oil is low, add some oil to your engine and contact a mechanic, so they can determine the cause of the oil leak. Do not just add oil and forget about the leak, because this is a potential fire hazard.

  • Another sign of an oil leak is the smell of burning oil. Oil leaking onto the hot parts of the engine gives off a distinct smell. If you notice a bad smell coming from the front of your vehicle, it is also time to get in touch with a mechanic.

  • If you are driving down the road and you notice blue smoke coming from the tail pipe of your vehicle, this is another sign that you may have an oil leak. Blue smoke is typically a sign of burning oil, which can be a sign of an oil leak. In addition, check beneath the vehicle and see if there are any puddles or stains that are black in color. These two signs combined indicate an oil leak.

Driving with an oil leak is potentially dangerous because it is a fire hazard. If the leak is not attended to in a timely manner, the engine can wear down prematurely causing larger problems. If your concerned that you have an oil leak, look at oil levels, be conscious of smells, and look at the color of the exhaust coming from your vehicle. For peace of mind, and to ensure safety while driving, contact a certified mechanic as soon possible to have the oil leak inspected.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Flexible Clutch Hose
Common signs include difficulty shifting, low clutch fluid, and feeling no resistance at the clutch pedal.
P0222 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input
P0222 code definition Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input What the P0222 code means The manufacturer specifies a range of acceptable voltage to be produced from the throttle position...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...


Related questions

Q: How do I adjust the rear view mirror?

The rear view mirror provides added visibility out of the rear window. Before driving, you should always adjust your mirror to the ideal position, so that you have maximum visibility. To adjust the mirror, manually tilt it up or down,...

Q: Can you help with Toyota Avalon repair questions?

Billing question sent to CS for the cost of repairing a power steering leak, flushing the power steering fluid, flushing the coolant, changing the oil and adding additives in the fuel, and repairing the exhaust system on a 2006 Toyota...

Q: How do I adjust the rear center head restraint?

The rear center head restraint can be adjusted vertically to be the proper height for the rear center passenger. To raise the head restraint, pull it directly upwards. To lower the restraint, press the release button at the base of...