Q: 2001 BMW valve cover gasket

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If the the engine is smoking what could be the problem ??

My car has 170 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

If you are referring to under hood smoke, such smoke is due to either an oil (engine or transmission) leak, power steering fluid leak, or engine coolant leak. Most older cars have oil leaks. Sealing technology has just not kept up with mechanical improvements to engines so much so that leaks often kill engines rather than mechanical problems. So, it is not unexpected at all to have an, indeed many, oil leaks on a 16 year old car. Oil leaks vary hugely in terms of severity and priority of repair. Oil leaking onto a hot engine manifold, causing smoke, is the worst case as the oil can start a fire; at best, you are left breathing oil fumes in the cabin, as the oil burns off of the manifold. De minimus seepage of oil at the oil drain plug or oil pan gasket, while annoying and messy, is not an emergency. Some leaks are easy to repair, while others literally require the engine to be removed just to get physical access to all the leak points. In your circumstance, due to the presence of smoke, do get the possibility of a leak checked out. If you desire, a certified Mechanic, dispatched by YourMechanic right to your location, can perform an oil leak diagnostic and then let you know of your repair options and costs. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

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