Engine Oil Leak Causes

engine oil leak causesIf you’re looking for engine oil leak causes, then you’ve probably already got one.  It is smart to try to understand why something happened to see if you can prevent it in the future, but also to help with the repairs.  There are lots of engine oil leak causes and in this article, we’ll look at some of them to see if we can help figure out how to keep leaks from happening in the future.

Engine Oil Leak Causes:

  • Normal Wear and Tear
  • Bad Bearings
  • Overheating
  • Poor Quality Oil
  • Late Oil Changes

At the end of the day, many oil leaks are simply the result of normal engine usage and wear and tear.  The metal components in your engine, if properly lubricated, will always out last rubber seals and gaskets so it’s not surprising that those need to be replaced before the engine is worn out.  Many times this can include things like your camshaft seals or rear main seal, but can also happen to valve cover gaskets, timing chain cover gaskets or other seals on your engine.

One problem that is guaranteed to cause an engine oil leak is worn bearings.  If the bearings are worn on a shaft that is sealed at one end, the worn bearings will allow the shaft to wobble.  This wobbling will put lots of extra stress on the seal and will quickly stretch it out of shape and possibly tear it causing an oil leak in that seal.  Anytime you’ve got a shaft seal leak, make sure you check the shaft for bearing play to make sure you don’t have bigger problems at work.

Overheating can also cause oil leaks.  If your engine overheats it can allow the metal to expand past the design tolerance of your motor.  As the metal expands and contracts it can stretch, tear or otherwise damage the gaskets causing oil leaks either immediately, or further down the road.  If your engine has recently overheated, keep an eye out for oil leaks from places like the valve cover gaskets and oil pan gaskets.

Using poor quality oil is also one of the engine oil leak causes worth thinking about.  Poor quality oil is cheap now which can keep your wallet happy for a short time, but can often prove to be expensive later.  Poor quality oil does not contain the necessary additives and conditioners to keep your seals and gaskets safe so it can lead to oil leaks down the road.  For more information on the classifications of engine oils available today, check out this article from the Petroleum Quality Institute of America.

Lastly, overdue oil changes can lead to engine oil leaks.  As your engine runs small deposits get trapped in your oil from combustion by-products, wear products and other impurities allowed in through the openings in your engine get entrained in your engine oil.  Your oil filter can remove many of these impurities, but many will stay entrained in the oil.  If you do not regularly change your engine oil these small impurities can be abrasive on oil seals and gaskets wearing away at them and eventually causing leaks.  Check your vehicle’s owner’s manual for the correct oil change intervals for your vehicle.

If you do end up with an oil leak, there is an easy solution!  Simply add BlueDevil Oil Stop Leak to your vehicle’s engine oil and it will seal your oil leak as you drive!

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