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Old 11-30-2020, 04:15 PM   #1
Manospeed
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Default 2007 Saturn Vue burning oil

Hi gents,

I've been dealing with this issue for a few months now since we bought a new home fairly far from my work and I now commute at highway speeds (55-80 mph) 66 miles 5 times per week.

Was driving my kid to school a couple weeks ago and as I was waiting to pick him up, the low oil pressure warning light went on. As soon as he got in the car we drove to the nearest parts supply store and bought some oil. I checked the oil and there was literally nothing. I ended up filling it up with 4 quarts of oil, until the dipstick was showing the correct oil level.

The vehicle is running the 2.2 ecotec with 163,000 miles and I personally do the oil changes every 5,000 miles. I've replaced head gasket, alternator, plugs, battery, valve cover gasket, and a slew of other things. My driveway is dry and there are no signs of oil leaks anywhere.

Any ideas of what the problem might be? I was thinking worn out piston rings perhaps, but at the same time now sure I want to dump more money into this vehicle. Is there anything I can potentially replace (ex. PVC valve) that won't cost an arm and a leg to try and resolve the issue or should I just continue filling it up with oil regularly to replace the burnt oil?

Thanks...
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Old 11-30-2020, 07:19 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2007 Saturn Vue burning oil

There is no PCV valve. There is an orifice in the head that mates to the intake manifold. if the orifice is plugged, tthis could cause your problem.

Only way to clean it is remove the intake manifold. You can see it in these photos. its between cyl 2 and 3

http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=217319
...
2003 Vue - 2.2L with Manual Trans. (Swapped)
Originally had 2.2L and Auto trans.
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Old 12-15-2020, 04:43 PM   #3
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Default Re: 2007 Saturn Vue burning oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Manospeed View Post
Was driving my kid to school a couple weeks ago and as I was waiting to pick him up, the low oil pressure warning light went on. As soon as he got in the car we drove to the nearest parts supply store and bought some oil.
Do not drive ANYWHERE with the low pressure light on. You're lucky you didn't do any permanent damage. Well, you may have but just don't know it yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Manospeed View Post
should I just continue filling it up with oil regularly to replace the burnt oil?
Yes.
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Old 12-15-2020, 05:37 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2007 Saturn Vue burning oil

5 days/week X 66 miles/day =330 miles per week. From your descriptions of finding your engine with nearly zero oil and the oil pressure light on, either you presumed (incorrectly) oil pressure is a low oil indicator or you neglected to check oil levels periodically. You may have dodged a large bullet.

How often do you check oil level?

One way to assess whether or not the engine is worn (piston rings) is with a compression test using a loaner from Autozone or Advance Auto. Other auto parts stores may have tool loan programs. If you try this, remove the fuel pump fuse or pump relay then perform a dry test followed by a wet test (a squirt of motor oil into each cylinder). Engines always have a light film of oil on cylinder walls to help rings seal for compression. Wear and tear can occur with lower compression so a wet test is performed to compare dry to wet compression values. Normal compression can be as high as 200 psi, average around 185 psi. Below 125 psi would be considered a well worn engine.

Last edited by fdryer; 12-15-2020 at 05:45 PM.
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Old 12-19-2020, 11:38 AM   #5
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Default Re: 2007 Saturn Vue burning oil

The rear brake light had gone out, so I pulled the vehicle into my garage to repair it. Took a look inside the engine bay with a high powered flash light and found the culprit. Looks like I've blown a gasket. There's a small puddle of oil to the top and left of the oil filter housing. Additionally, oil is sprayed along the length of the right side of the engine.

Besides the very basics (brakes, struts, spark plugs etc.), I have no experience disassembling an engine so I'm not sure if I'm looking at a blown head gasket or some other gasket further down. Can you tell based on the images/video? I had the head gasket and timing chain replaced about 1.5 years ago. Oil changes I perform myself every 5,000 miles using synthetic oil. I checked the oil last night and I've lost about 50% after 1050 miles.

Any idea as to what I'm looking at to repair this? Would the value of the vehicle justify the additional expense? Car has 165,000 miles. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

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Thanks...
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Old 12-19-2020, 09:26 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2007 Saturn Vue burning oil

Losing half the amount of oil after 1050 miles equates to oil consumption of one quart every 525 miles. Oil consumption isn't addressed any more according to members here consulting with dealers with several stating from their dealer and service manuals that any consumption is considered normal.

Again, if you haven't made a point of regularly checking oil level on a more frequent schedule, like every two weeks, with longer driving distances on a well used engine, your oil consumption may be considered normal. My guess is you're not losing oil from a leak (based on snapshots). The engine is burning it from worn piston rings. One way to tell is rev the engine quickly while parked and looking for tailpipe smoke. Burning oil tints exhaust blue.

If you're engine is leaking large amounts oil from anywhere, there should be oil built up with dirt collected over the years. Look under the engine for sludge resulting from massive oil leakage combined with road debris. Place a large piece of cardboard under the engine and check for oil the next day.

Perhaps other ecotec engine owners here can offer their opinions.
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Old 12-20-2020, 07:02 PM   #7
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Default Re: 2007 Saturn Vue burning oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Manospeed View Post
Looks like I've blown a gasket. There's a small puddle of oil to the top and left of the oil filter housing. Additionally, oil is sprayed along the length of the right side of the engine.

.

While the harmonic balancer seal should have been replaced at the time the timing chain was, that doesn't mean it was or that it was done correctly. Is the serpentine belt covered in oil?
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