Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: After valve cover gasket replacement, compressor broke

asked by on

There was a burning smell in my car and I took it to the mechanic’s shop. He told me that he found that the valve cover gaskets had been leaking oil onto the exhaust. He removed and replaced both of the valve cover gaskets. As soon as I had driven away, the A/C light started flashing, which was an indication that the compressor had broken. Back to the mechanic’s and I had him look again. He reported that the compressor, sure enough, was broken but that it was not due to the valve gasket replacements. The timing was either a coincidence or a bit suspicious to me. I would like your assessment. What other things can cause a compressor to break and what is the best fix?

Hi there. Thanks for writing in about your 2000 Lexus GS400. Compressors can go bad due to oil saturation. It is likely that the technician spilled additional oil on the compressor when replacing the valve cover. The technician may have dealt the final blow to the already weakened compressor if they did spill such additional oil onto it. Unfortunately there is no real way to prove if this was done or not. If you need to have this taken care of, a qualified professional, such as one from YourMechanic can take a look at the car and replace the compressor if necessary.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: A/C blowing warm air

A failed compressor is just one of the many potential causes for your A/C being inoperative. It could be something as simple as low refrigerant level. If you are questioning your mechanic, I suggest you get a second opinion....

Q: Tahoe keeps stalling, bucking, and I smell gas by the engine.

Hi and thanks for contacting YourMechanic. With having the intake manifold bolts broken, yes you can smell gas, but the vehicle will have a vacuum leak. The O2 sensor is on for the broken bolt due to the vacuum leak....

Q: How much does it cost for Camshaft cover and Valve cover gaskets, parts and labor?

Billing question sent to CS for the cost of replacing the valve cover and camshaft cover gaskets with the cost of labor on a 2008 Mercedes-Benz CLK350 with a V6-3.5L engine.

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the...