2000 Saturn SL2 Oil Smoke

Tiny
ADARNELL
  • MEMBER
  • 2000 SATURN SL2
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • MANUAL
  • 14,900 MILES
I just bought a 2000 Saturn SL2 for $500. The seller said it ran a little rough but nothing major. I drove it, it has plenty of power but a little stutter and some engine noise. No smoke or smell out of the exhaust.

I got the car home and checked the fluids. Not a drop of oil. I add about two quarts just to check it out. Turn the key and I am lost in oily thick fog.

I am wondering if this could be a bad valve or piston ring, or have I just bought a junkyard special?

Thanks.
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Friday, March 20th, 2009 AT 1:50 PM

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Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi:
It sounds like the rings are bad. What you need to check the engine compression. It could still be good because there are compression rings and an oil ring. But at least we would know if there is a problem with the valves.

Also, when it smokes, does the smoke go away after a few seconds or does it continue the entire time the car is running? If it only does it at start up (after sitting) it could be valve seals.

Let me know.

Joe
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Friday, March 20th, 2009 AT 3:08 PM
Tiny
ADARNELL
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It smokes until there is no oil left. I pulled the plugs and #1, 3 are covered in brown ash and #3 is filled with oil and grease.

I am going to do a compression check in the morning.

I will post the results.

Thanks,

Adam
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Friday, March 20th, 2009 AT 5:04 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Adam, When you do the compression test, I want you to do two things. First, do a "dry test". That is, remove the plugs and check it. If you find a low cylender, I want you to pour about a tablespoon of motor oil in the cylender (wet test). After you put the oil in the cylender, check the compression again to see if it increases. If it does, the rings are bad. If it doesn't, there is a problem with the head gasket, valves.

Keep me posted.

Joe
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Friday, March 20th, 2009 AT 8:44 PM
Tiny
ADARNELL
  • MEMBER
I did the compression test and it went fine until I got to #3.
#1-160
#2-150
#4-170

#3-0

The #3 would show a pressure spike everytime it hit the compression stroke but it would not hold any compression.

I am pulling the camshafts and valves now. (It is the DOHC engine)

My money is on a broken valve.
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Monday, March 23rd, 2009 AT 12:34 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
It could be a valve problem. Maybe bent or stuck. Let me know what you find.

Joe
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Monday, March 23rd, 2009 AT 1:53 PM

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