In February 2010 at 114,000 miles, I had my valve cover gaskets and tensioners replaced because the valves were seeping oil causing a burning smell. Just 17 months and 8,000 miles later, a burning smell has returned. It's not as bad as it was, and I can't smell it (yet) while I am driving. Are my valve cover gaskets bad AGAIN? If I ignore it, what is the downside? Will I eventually damage the engine? How long (time and miles) do I have? I only drive it 100-200 miles per month and one 2,200 mile trip per year.
Burning oil smell again. on 2001 Volkswagen Passat
by Rob in Mcallen, TX on September 15, 2011
2 answers 1 comment
ANSWER by patrick mannion on September 15, 2011
The valve cover gaskets may in dead be leaking. The PCV valve may be restricted causing excess crank case pressure or you could have blow bye (cylinder leakage test may confirm that. Mileage is low to expect engine problems. We sometimes use a "smoke machine" generates inert smoke into the crankcase you see where the leak is by where the smoke comes out. You could also use dye in the oil that can be viewed using a black light to see where the leak is. Perhaps try tightening the valve cover bolts. Replacing both valve cover gaskets and washing down the oil leak is about 3 hours labor.
COMMENT by Rob on September 15, 2011
Thanks for the info. If I ignore it, will damage result?
ANSWER by guitargordy on August 09, 2013
My car does the same thing. I have had both gaskets replaced and 1 gasket cover replaced. I have no answer for you .. I don't know what happened..I am Gordy ..Guitargordy
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