Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Oil leaks into coolant & coolant leaks into oil

asked by on

A few days ago I noticed that all of the oil is leaking into the coolant and all of the coolant is leaking into the oil. It is like a brown foam in the water bottle and in the cylinder head. There has not been any smoking at all. Driving and idling have not changed. A friend told me that the oil cooler might be cracked and that I need to check that. Is that right or is this something else. Thank you.

A: If the engine is not overheating or running...

If the engine is not overheating or running badly, then yes an oil cooler is most likely the issue as it it will allow oil and coolant to mix. Other possibilities are a bad cylinder head gasket or cracked block, but this will generally affect how the engine runs as the combustion chambers are also affected. To have this checked, you may want to enlist the help of a mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will have the tools and expertise to diagnose the oil/coolant leak mixing and perform any needed repairs.

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・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Can't pressurize the hydraulics

Most likely, the master cylinder has gone bad as well. 70,000 miles is a long time ago. The only other thing that you could try is either pressure, or vacuum bleeding the clutch system, with one of the many different...

Q: Car refusing to start

It sounds like to problem is with the ignition switch. If your lights come on when commanded and the vehicle won't turn over this is most likely the issue. If you have no power to anything you could have a...

Q: Slow leak in oil pan

Hello. Resealing an oil pan is not an easy job for someone who is not an experienced technician. I would suggest that you have a certified technician, like one from YourMechanic, come and replace the oil pan gasket.

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
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...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...