Q: Normal to have to add oil before next change

asked by on

I got this car in April and drive it a lot I have put 6000 miles on it so far. It seems to drive really well and I never have noticed the smell of burning oil or puddles of oil leaking underneath it. I'm 500 miles away from needing my next oil change and I noticed that the dipstick is two-thirds of the way down so it's a third away from needing 1 quart of oil. Is it normal to have to add a quart of oil or be close to adding a quart of oil right before your next change? Or do I possibly have a leak? Thanks.
My car has an automatic transmission.

If your car is not leaking the oil, most likely the car is burning the oil. This can mean a couple of different things.

A PCV Valve (Positive Crankcase Ventilation) that is not functioning correctly will cause the engine to burn excess oil. This valve is designed to draw excess fumes from the crankcase which also creates a slight vacuum. The correct flow of the PCV valve also helps to regulate engine vacuum. When too much pressure or vacuum is present in an engine, this can cause the oil to be pushed to the top of the motor through the cylinders and past the piston rings (piston rings are designed to prevent oil seeping beyond them) and into the combustion chamber causing it to be burnt along with the air/fuel mixture. As the fuel ignites, the oil does as well causing it to be expelled as exhaust. A new PCV Valve is commonly an inexpensive fix to this problem and can prevent very expensive oil leak problems if caught early.

General Motors indicates that oil consumption of about 1 quart per 2,000 miles is normal. As the mileage of the car increases mechanical parts and seals will slowly show wear which will contribute to this as well. The next time you have your oil changed, have the mechanic check for oil leaks and inspect the system to make sure everything is working well.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Normal to have to add oil before next change

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: I just bought a used 2010 Dodge Avenger. Took it home yesterday, then woke up this morning to the smell of gasoline in my garage .

If the gas tank is replaced with a new OEM (dealer supplied) tank and the tank is installed exactly according to the detailed instructions set forth in the Factory Service Manual, it will be good as new and you will...

Q: Had Chevrolet dealer put a fuel pump in. They added a fuel level sensor. Was it necessary to change that part?

Hi, thanks for your question. The unit most likely comes as an assembly when purchased from a dealer. If they are separate, then they probably replaced it due to a problem with sensor or the pump assembly was redesigned and...

Q: Rattle coming from front end over bumps

Hi There, Unfortunately, the video is a bit tough to hear the sound specifically, however this may potentially be caused by loose or worn wheel bearings. You can check this by jacking the vehicle up and moving the wheels on...

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...
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...
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...