Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Minimum Oil Level indicator light shows up every month

asked by on

My car is using up oil at an alarming rate. I have to put a gallon of oil almost every month. I have done some research on my car, and apparently it does have a very high rate of oil consumption. I have found suggestions such as using a 'heavier' oil in order to decrease burn rate. Is this advisable? What weight oil (and brand) should I use in my car?

My car has 60000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hi there. You are right that this engine do...

Hi there. You are right that this engine does have a history of high oil consumption. This is caused by the design of the engine and the turbo. With that being said, you adding a little more I would consider to be typical. Without knowing the amount of miles you are driving I cannot say for sure, but there are some parts that can be checked to make sure that they are functioning correctly. I typically start by checking the operation of the crankcase ventilation system. Most of the time, it becomes dirty with oil sludge and begins to malfunction causing it to draw in oil. I will usually remove these parts and clean them out prior to replacing anything.

As for changing to a heavier oil, don’t do it. Your engine was designed to run most efficiently with the recommended oil weight and type. A heavier oil can keep things like the variable valve timing from working correctly and can cause premature engine wear. If this is something that you plan on having looked at, consider YourMechanic, as a certified mechanic can come to your home or office and inspect the oil consumption issue with your vehicle.

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

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

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: Oil indicator light on

I think that one of two things could be happening with your 2007 BMW 750 Li. The first of which is that you may be burning oil. If you are burning oil, you would see bluish white smoke coming from...

Q: Spongy brakes after replacing rear discs, pads and refurbing rear calipers. Bled so many times to no avail!

All four wheels have to be bled starting with the right rear, then left rear, right front, and left front. Inasmuch as air may be trapped as much as 10 feet from the bleeder screw, you have to have a...

Q: Rear seat belt stuck

Most vehicles are equipped with a locking mechanism in the seat belts that will engage when the vehicle has come to an abrupt stop. It is possible that the locking mechanism on your seat belt has failed. If this has...

Related articles

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 P0052 code means This code is seen when the Engine Control Module (ECM) tries to control the...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...