Last post on Jun 02, 2003 at 9:48 PM
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Audi A4, Oil, Sedan
#23 of 32 don't make it so complicated....
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
May 31, 2003 (11:48 am)
It's simply a design issue. An engine that burns a quart every 3,000 is not "inferior" nor is one that burns no oil "superior". Some people have a 62 heartrate, some a 72, some dogs bark some don't. They all live the same length of time.
It's just that type of engine with those type of rings and this metallurgy and that power band and this much oil pressure and those type of bearings and this operating temperature and that grade of oil and this climate and those driving habits and this type of PCV system.
There is simply nothing wrong with an engine that burns some oil. It is as normal as breathing for a machine to do.
If you rarely check your oil, that's a no-gain habit, no matter what you drive, and I'd encourage you to discontinue dipstick avoidance. One ten cent seal will put your car out of business whereas lifting the hood every second fill up might save it.
Not checking oil because your engine does use it is a sure road to making a mistake.
May 31, 2003 (12:37 pm)
"It's simply a design issue. An engine that burns a quart every 3,000 is not "inferior" nor is one that burns no oil "superior". Some people have a 62 heartrate, some a 72, some dogs bark some don't. They all live the same length of time."
....and an engine that doesn't burn hardly any oil at all is just fine. You said you'd be concerned about an engine that doesn't burn oil and that burning a little oil is good. I'd rather have a car that I don't need to add oil to and I have not seen one shred of evidence that suggests that burning oil is good for your engine. Has there ever been any study performed that proves the *long term* benefits of burning oil? Do engines that burn a little oil last longer statistically than engines that don't? Is burning oil from day one good for the longevity of your emissions systems? How much oil does your engine need to burn to realize the benefits of burning oil? Is burning a quart every 1000 miles even enough to lubricate anything? Does it do more harm than good? Does burning oil create more carbon deposits on the pistons and valves over time? Point is, I'd be embarrassed adding oil to a car that doesn't even have license plates yet at a gas station, and I'm not worried at all about my car NOT using oil. If Mazda can build a 2.0L that doesn't burn oil, I don't see why VW can't.
#25 of 32 OK, then, let's all attack VW
May 31, 2003 (9:19 pm)
and the others who have made a decision that a little oil lost to the cylinders is not the end of the world.
finally got my stent work last thursday, and almost saw the end of the world due to a complication elsewhere. I'm not going to waste my time on the "no oil use anywhere at any time" bandwagon, I have other things to do for the next 40 years or so.
you burn a quart in 500 miles, call me.
#26 of 32 Yep, oil burning is good for your engine.
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Jun 01, 2003 (7:28 am)
yes, that's right, I'd be a bit concerned about an engine that didn't burn any oil at all, especially at very high speeds. I would PURPOSELY add a special type of oil to the fuel on a car like this, especially the way I drive, which is FAST.
A little oil, a few ounces during the oil change cycle, should be enough to offer the benefit to the upper cylinder area.
Oil burning doesn't effect emissions or create carbon buildup unless it is an *extreme* situation. Even then I've personally witnessed moderate oil burning cars passing California emissions testing. Apparently, the test cycle doesn't care about those types of emissions.
This is why I always say that a quart every 1,000 miles is alarming on a newer car, but a quart every 3,000 or whatever has no effect on emissions or carbon, etc. It's not enough to matter.
You may have seen all kinds of engine additives, upper cylinder lubricant, "top oil", etc. being marketed in stores. This is essentially a light oil that goes into the gasoline to lubricate the valves and upper cylinder area.
In fact, you could burn a quart of oil every 100 miles, and if you keep adding it and take on the job as Mosquito Abatement Officer in your town, your car could run for 200,000 miles like that.
Of course, I'd hope you'd fix it and give us all a break.
A new car burning a small amount of oil, or even a quart between changes, is a non-issue IMO. I wouldn't give it a second thought except to monitor the oil level, as one should do on ANY car naturally.
People have enough to worry about on new cars. A little oil burning isn't one of them.
Jun 01, 2003 (7:38 pm)
Mr_Shiftright-- Correcto Mundo. Time was when truck engines were built with oil shedders on the valves of a design that allowed more oil to get by and into the cylinders, to facilitate the lubrication and added cooling effect this provided. GM (and others) had engines for trucks that differed from similar car engines almost exclusively in the size and shape of the shedders.
#28 of 32 Oil burning on older car
Jun 02, 2003 (12:57 am)
My 12 year old Integra with 112,000 miles on it burns 1/2 to 3/4 of a quart every 1000 miles (1 month). It didn't burn nearly this much when it was younger. Other than this, it runs fine and I just check it often and add oil when necessary. Should I be concerned?
Jun 02, 2003 (8:27 am)
Nah, it's normal wear and tear. You might experiment with different weights of oil or even a synthetic just to see what happens. Perhaps your valve stem seals are hardened up and your engine is sucking some oil from the cylinder head itself. This is common with older engines, as age plays a part just as much as mileage when it comes to seals.
Jun 02, 2003 (10:15 am)
It's what I'd hoped you'd say. Don't really want to sink any money into the car when its running fine.
Jun 02, 2003 (5:32 pm)
You might do this test (carefully).
Find a long downhill or a long level road. REv it up in say second of third gear close to redline---then just let off the gas and nothing else...look out the back window (CAREFULLY! or have someone following you) as you slowly decelerate. Don't use the brakes, just let the engine wind itself down...once you are down to maybe 2200-2500 rpm, PUNCH the gas and see if you get a cloud of blue smoke out the back.
If you do, that's probably valve stem seals, as you have created high engine vacuum by decerating from high rpm, sucking oil past the valve stem seals, and then by punching the gas, you've suddenly burned it.
Be sure you do this with no obstructing traffic or have a friend follow you so that you can concentrate on what's ahead of you.
Jun 02, 2003 (9:48 pm)
Okay, will try it. Thanks.