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Water in Oil -- Uh-Oh!
Posted by Brooklyn_Paul [Email] (more from Brooklyn_Paul) on Tue, 10 Jan 2017 11:22:03
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Found water in my oil today. Streak of brown emulsion on dipstick. After warming up the car, it was gone and the oil looked emulsion-free. But, I wanted to see what was in the crankcase, so I did an oil change.

Two key points:

1) I'm a bad boy and I hadn't changed the oil in a year, maybe as much as 7000 miles.

2) The car sprang a mysterious coolant leak a week ago, which I couldn't find for a couple days. It turned out to be a pinhole in the top heater hose, which was spraying all over the left front quadrant of the engine compartment, including the air cleaner and intake spout.

3) As a result of the coolant loss and replenishing it with mostly water, I wasn't really ready for the cold snap we had the other night. My tester showed the coolant good to around 0F. We only got down to 12F, so I wasn't too worried, or at least not worried enough for a midnight run to the gas station to pick up some more antifreeze and start draining the radiator on the street, at night, in sub-20 winds.

So, I warmed the car up today until the fan ran, and then did an oil change. My neglected oil was pretty much on the black side. There was no sign of any light emulsion, but there was an ounce or so of lumpy sludge that I suspect of containing water.

So, how worried should I be? Have I destroyed my engine through neglecting to have a better ratio of antifreeze? Or is that sludge the result of a) Long overdue oil change, or b) blowing hot coolant into the air intake? And if this is freeze damage, would it most likely be the head gasket? It doesn't seem like enough water to come from anything being cracked.

posted by 104.162.12...

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