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car guys - what's going on with my Mazda?

dexterq20

Turbo Monkey
Mar 6, 2003
3,442
1
NorCal
I'll preface this post by saying I have no clue what I'm doing when it comes to working on my car. I can do basic stuff like change headlight bulbs, replace the battery, install wiper blades, and change a flat, but that's about it.

Got my oil changed about two weeks ago and the mechanic told me that my dipstick was totally dry before they filled me up with new oil. Just checked my dipstick today, and once again, it's dry as can be. How the hell is that possible if I just got my oil changed so recently? Is my car leaking oil? There aren't any stains on the floor of my garage where I park, although I do sometimes get a burning smell wafting into the cabin of the car while driving. Could oil be leaking onto the engine block and then burning off? Help please.

Oh, and I don't know if it matters, but the car is a 2003 Mazda Protege 5, which just hit 100,000 miles 3 days ago.
 

bdamschen

Turbo Monkey
Nov 28, 2005
3,316
36
Spreckels, CA
There is a simple 6 step process for checking to see where all the oil went:

1. Fill it back up with oil

2. Start the car

3. Look under the car for oil. If there is, go to step 6, otherwise continue to step 4

4. Put on white pants

5. With the engine running, stand behind the tail pipe.

6. Post pics!
 

IH8Rice

I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!
Aug 2, 2008
24,550
490
Im over here now
take a look at the exhaust manifold to see if oil is dripping into it. also take a look at the valve cover to see if thats leaking. do you notice any blue smoke coming from your exhaust when you accelerate?
 

stevew

unique white person
Sep 21, 2001
32,282
3,109
"he had a magic car that made all the oil in it disappear"

paraphrased from a henry rollins spoken word record...
 

DirtyMike

Turbo Fluffer
Aug 8, 2005
14,316
903
My own world inside my head
A few possiblities

Of coarse oil leak
oil burning, which has multiple possiblities in itself.

...Oil burning.... Bad rings, bad valve seals, Stuck open PCV valve, Belive it or not, overly rich condition, depending on which mazda you have leaky intake manifold<yes some had oil running through them>, blown cyl head gasket leaking into the cylynders, if its a turbo model, it could be a turbo seal.


Thats what i have off the top of my head..... good luck, I would start with filling it, and changing the PCV valve

What year and Model???
 

buildyourown

Turbo Monkey
Feb 9, 2004
4,837
0
South Seattle
My guess, oil leak onto exhaust manifold. I've seen this manifest only under certain conditions. Say, after extended highway driving. You never see a drip on the ground and you barely notice the smell since you have pletny of fresh air at highway speeds. Just a thought.

Crawl under your car and look/feel around for a really dirty spot. Probably on top of the exhaust manifold or heat sheild.
 

DirtyMike

Turbo Fluffer
Aug 8, 2005
14,316
903
My own world inside my head
My guess, oil leak onto exhaust manifold. I've seen this manifest only under certain conditions. Say, after extended highway driving. You never see a drip on the ground and you barely notice the smell since you have pletny of fresh air at highway speeds. Just a thought.

Crawl under your car and look/feel around for a really dirty spot. Probably on top of the exhaust manifold or heat sheild.
Ive seen that before, but not when its actually leaving the dipstick dry.... usually if its leaking that bad, itl be smoking like a bitch and still dripping.
 

Sandwich

Pig my fish!
Staff member
May 23, 2002
16,366
1,203
01776
I'll preface this post by saying I have no clue what I'm doing when it comes to working on my car. I can do basic stuff like change headlight bulbs, replace the battery, install wiper blades, and change a flat, but that's about it.

Got my oil changed about two weeks ago and the mechanic told me that my dipstick was totally dry before they filled me up with new oil. Just checked my dipstick today, and once again, it's dry as can be. How the hell is that possible if I just got my oil changed so recently? Is my car leaking oil? There aren't any stains on the floor of my garage where I park, although I do sometimes get a burning smell wafting into the cabin of the car while driving. Could oil be leaking onto the engine block and then burning off? Help please.

Oh, and I don't know if it matters, but the car is a 2003 Mazda Protege 5, which just hit 100,000 miles 3 days ago.
do you change the oil regularly, or did you "forget" for a while? Did the car overheat at all? It's possible that the oil is leaking into the combustion chamber and burning off...bad rings can cause this. Check the tailpipe for smoke on a dry, moderate temp day. Is it white? Bluish? Does it smell sweet? Does it linger?

If there's no smoke from the tailpipe, run the car around until it gets hot. Make sure there's oil in it first, but get up into the revs and pull into a lot or your driveway and pop the hood. You should see anything causing smoke.

It sounds to me, based on my knowledge and what you've said, that you may have a leak coming from something like the valve cover gasket or similar. I doubt it's blow-by, as you would have a shedload of smoke coming out the back end. Might be bad valve seals, but you would probably still see smoke. I don't think it'll be too expensive to fix, but it might cost you a little bit. Take it to a legitimate mechanic and have him take a look. Real dudes will be able to tell you quick...but we'll certainly try.
 

dexterq20

Turbo Monkey
Mar 6, 2003
3,442
1
NorCal
I've been religious about changing the oil in the car, and it's never overheated or had the oil pressure dash light come on. No smoke coming out of the exhaust either, I've already checked.
 

MMike

A fowl peckerwood.
Sep 5, 2001
18,222
85
just sittin' here drinkin' scotch
Sounds like your blinker shims are kaput. Have them resurfaced and then rotated. If that doesnt work, try recalibrating the fleem drive.
Nah nah....the protoge doesn't have those. That model year they changed them out for overhead Neilsen regulators. Personally I'd consider a full rebuild of the reciprocating embroglio.
 

dan-o

Turbo Monkey
Jun 30, 2004
5,521
1,695
If there are no signs of leaks/burning, I'd check the dipstick to ensure its the right one for the engine.
 

blue

boob hater
Jan 24, 2004
10,165
0
california
After we ski today, I suggest we solve this issue utilizing the cat, a vat of bondo, and a few gallons of kerosene.

But really...I am looking at it in a second and will report back to the resident carhumpers.
 

blue

boob hater
Jan 24, 2004
10,165
0
california
So I investimagated the issue...

Turns out OP doesn't know how to read a dipstick. And the JL he got his oil changed at is probably full of retards.
 

nelsonjm

Monkey
Feb 16, 2007
710
1
Columbia, MD
My bet is they let the engine run, pulled the dipstick out, cleaned it, and when they went to "check" the level, didn't completely insert the stick back into the engine.

They may have done this on a significant grade too.
 
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greengreer

Monkey
Apr 27, 2008
174
0
NC
Keep an eye on how much your car is burning (if any, do you notice blue-ish smoke from the tailpipe?) also, if you are so inclined take a look underneath your car. If it is especially grimy and greasy the oil may be leaking somewhere, but not dripping if that makes sense.
Next step is to buy a bottle of stop leak or no leak or whatever it is called. Add this into your next oil change, make sure to account for the half quart or so that the stopleak is when re-filling oil. It may take a hundred or so miles to take effect, but it will usually fix most small leaks, internal and external. I recently had an oil leak in my van after the fan clutch went out and it overheated, used a bottle of this stuff and the leak is practically gone. I was skeptical but for the money it is worth a try.
 

97 ATX 2.0L

Chimp
Jan 15, 2007
7
0
My old Probe had the same basic motor. I'd check the oil pressure switch, mine leaked there for a while without notice, a whole lot leaked. It did mess with the gauge, not sure if the proteges had the same gauge/switch as probe/mx6/626s.
 

Sandwich

Pig my fish!
Staff member
May 23, 2002
16,366
1,203
01776
Next post: What do you do if your crankcase is over-filled?
get your dumb self under there and drain it out!

a little oil isn't usually a problem. too much and you risk hydrolocking the engine.
 

DirtyMike

Turbo Fluffer
Aug 8, 2005
14,316
903
My own world inside my head
So I investimagated the issue...

Turns out OP doesn't know how to read a dipstick. And the JL he got his oil changed at is probably full of retards.
Funny

More info... I need a laugh. How did he determine the stick was "dry" if it wasn't? :rofl:

Im going to guess its one of those cool dipsticks that are plastic on the end, and pretty hard to read if the oil is clean....... Meaning you have to be smart enought o look for the wetspot over just color!!!



get your dumb self under there and drain it out!

a little oil isn't usually a problem. too much and you risk hydrolocking the engine.
To hydrolock an engine from too much oil....Damn thats alot of oil, youll generally blow the gaskets and seals before itll hydrolock.......



Now the real damage youll find from being overfilled on an engine.... Ok E-Enginerds... you ready for this.......

Your crankshaft will start sucking up oil as it rotates to close to what is overfilled oil, causing a whipping action on the top of the oil in the pan...... This induces foam, which incided air bubbles in the oil..... which in turn means Engine damage........ Remember basic hydralics and how air in the system is a bad thing... Well the oiling system in a car is just a simple Hydro system............



Thats why Hotrods have what they call a windage tray..... goes between the oil, and the crank... kind of hard to explain if you dont know what it is, but it eliminates the whipping.... alot of newer cars have something like this now stock.....








Ok so I looked up some tsb's........ For future reference.... You rengine has a TSB for worn valve guide's..... was a problem on those for getting too much clearance in the valve stems/guide interface, which would destroy the seal which would allow for engine oil to bypass the seal, and become atomized before burning.... when this happens it greatly reduces the smoke that would normally be seen out of the tail pipe. The fix..... redrill the heads for a Valve guide insert, and replace all valves and seals... the check...... simple but now conclusive, remove rockers, rotate engine<in pattern to long to care to list> remove valve spring, check side to side movement of valve.....Check with dial indicator. Proper way, remove head, disassemble, and get out the head tools...
 

didaly

Chimp
Jan 14, 2014
1
0
Do a Compression Check.... your oil is being burned by normal driving right? no engin oil where u park? Then it is traveling out through egr or past rings or valve guides. Do a compression Check. G... luck