Q: Checking car for oil burning

asked by on July 17, 2017

Hello I know a mechanic who once told me that I can check if a car is burning oil by opening the oil cap( where engine oil is poured) while the car is running and checking visually for smoke. However I don't really know what to look for excatly ..I know there are other ways to check for oil burning ..but I'm interested in this way..thank you

My car has 200000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The crankcase is a closed system and this kind of test does not show anything on this cars engine since if you open the oil cap the engine will run rough due to sucking in all the fresh air. The best oil consumption test is to do a fresh oil change and make sure it is full of oil on full mark on indicator and then drive the car as normal and measure how many miles is driven until the oil is low by 1 quart before adding. If you are going more than 1000 miles before you have to add a quart of oil then you are not burning excess oil. If you are getting less than 1000 miles before it is 1 quart low then you have excessive oil consumption and need to have PCV system checked and a compression test done to find the cause.

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