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Old 10-08-2017   #1
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1.6 oil usage

Hi guys
Just after abit of advice/help please!
I have a 54 plate 1.6 stilo with 70000 miles,I'm currently doing about 1k a month but the cars using at least 5litres of oil every month,does that seem excessive? I previously had a 1.2 8v punto that never needed topping up
Iv been using both 5w40 or 10w40 semi synthetic the usage has been the same,there's no oil in the coolant and no mayonnaise in the oil filler?
The car smokes but only very occasionally and only lasts for about 2-3 seconds!
Has anyone got any advice/ideas what could be causing this or where or the oil is going?
Any advice/suggestions would be much appreciated!

Thanks guys
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Last edited by siadz; 10-08-2017 at 01:37.
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Old 10-08-2017   #2
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Re: 1.6 oil usage

I presume there's no major oil leak.. a 5 ltr/month loss would be visible all over the engine and you would have puddles of oil on the ground where you park (more than 100ml a day dripping onto the floor).

So, it's burning it. If you get smoke when it's hot and you rev it, then it would be more likely to be the piston rings.. but since you get a tinge of blue smoke on startup that then disappears, my money is on the valve guide oil seals.

First job is to get the spark plugs out. If one or two cylinders are leaky, then you'll see oily deposits on the plugs from the affected cylinders. Do this when the engine is cold (in the morning, assuming you don't drive it at night) so that any new oil is not burnt off. You should see that one or two plugs are way more oily than the others.

If you have/can get an endoscope then shove it down the spark plug hole and have a look. There'll be more carbon and soot on the affected cylinder(s) piston crowns... but this should just confirm the results of the spark plug test.

The only solution is to replace the valve stem seals, which can only be done as a cylinder-head off job. That is likely to be uneconomic compared to the cost of just topping the engine up with oil and keeping an eye on it.

If you do take the head off, you'll need a new head gasket .. and it's the perfect time to replace the cam-belt, tensioner and water pump. At least then you'll have pretty much a brand new engine..

If your plugs look okay (and before you decide to remove the head) it's worth running a compression test on each cylinder to see what that says. If you have one or more cylinders with low compression that would suggest that the rings are shot. Note that oil rings and valve stem seals being knackered won't show up on the compression test.. that only tests the fire rings.. but if those are knackered then there's a good chance that the oil rings could also be worn out.

The bad news is that "new rings" is a head (and sump) off job too.

If you just want to keep topping the beast up with oil (although your cat' might eventually be killed off) try a 15W40 oil. Halfords does one which is not tooo dear:

http://www.halfords.com/motoring/eng...nthetic-oil-5l


Ralf S.
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Old 12-08-2017   #3
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Re: 1.6 oil usage

Can only agree with all Ralf has said. Five litres of oil every 1,000 miles is certainly eating way too much oil.

An oil burner might give you emissions issues at MOT time too.

As Ralf has said, it can only be value stem seals or piston rings really. Neither of which, as said, is going to be particularly cheap or easy to repair.

Just to check - you are only filling the oil as far as the top of marked area on the oil dip stick? I only ask as i've heard of people literally filling the engine with oil, right up to the top of the oil cap. Of course if you over fill it with oil you will cause possible blow-by (oil being forced passed the piston rings) which will only cause more oil to be used quicker.
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Old 12-08-2017   #4
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Thanks guys,
I haven't noticed any pools of oil under the car when parked up.
Took the plugs out today and here's what I found!
I couldn't get number 4 out as whoever changed the plugs last time had conveniently cross threaded it 😡
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Last edited by siadz; 12-08-2017 at 17:41.
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Old 12-08-2017   #5
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Re: 1.6 oil usage

Quote Quote:
Took the plugs out today and here's what I found!
One of those plugs looks absolutely horrendous!

I don't see the valve stem seals causing oiling on such an industrial scale. On the face of it, that's pointing to something more serious around piston/ring area.

You've got a problem if one of your plugs has been cross threaded and won't come out. A cross threaded plug can be removed if you know how/and are careful/lucky. If you're not confident about removing the stuck plug - get somebody who can do it for you. If the thread in the head gets stripped you won't have much to smile about.

A compression test - dry and wet - would tell you a lot about the state of the engine, though as it stands you can only do 3 cylinders at the moment ..

With the engine ticking over and the oil filler cap and dipstick removed, do you get oil and fumes 'chugging out' in time with the beat of the engine ?

An engine burning 5 litres of oil every 1000 miles really does have some mega issues. Get a second opinion - if push comes to shove it may be a cheaper option to get a second hand engine
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Last edited by glenn2602; 12-08-2017 at 21:37.
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Old 13-08-2017   #6
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Re: 1.6 oil usage

Quote Originally Posted by glenn2602 View Post
One of those plugs looks absolutely horrendous!
Indeed and another of those really doesn't look great.

Agree with the tests Glenn suggests.

I have to be honest if that were my car, coming up with those problems, for the value of these things now; I'd be looking towards throwing it in the bin and finding something else.... Sorry!
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Old 13-08-2017   #7
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Re: 1.6 oil usage

Quote Quote:
I haven't noticed any pools of oil under the car
Just as an afterthought, are you positive that the oil isn't leaking down from the rocker cover and into the spark plug wells?
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Old 14-08-2017   #8
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Re: 1.6 oil usage

There's a lot of oil on the upper part of those plugs.. so if the plug holes are full of oil, then oil is leaking out through the rocker gasket. The leak could account for some of your oil loss.. but not to the extent you're losing.

The first picture looks nasty though and that's my contender for indicating where the problem lies. All the plugs should look like the other two photos - apart from the oil all over the plugs above the threaded section, they look perfect.

If you/someone is confident enough to take the rocker cover off, you'll be able to clean out any oil from the plug holes... and also have some kind of peep at the top of the valves, particularly the one with the sooted plug. It's tricky to see the valve stem itself (under a tappet and under the camshaft) but if it's in really bad shape, some of the seal may be hanging out.

A compression test is the next least expensive test. That will determine whether the cylinder has good compression or not and at least discount the piston/rings. But so far it could still be a leaky/dead valve stem seal.

As an aside you can get oil additives that are supposed to restore rubber gaskets and seals to make them more plump...

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Redex-Oil-...wAAOSwLVZVrOXf


It may be worth a try to see if this reduces your oil consumption.. I'm not sure that it will completely cure a very bad/missing seal but if it makes an improvement then a) it's paid for itself and b) it's a good clue that the seal(s) are the problem.


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Last edited by Ralf S.; 14-08-2017 at 12:57.
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