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Old 02-17-2003, 07:05 PM   #1
David 93 SL2m
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Question MMO piston soak (and soak, and soak...)

Okay, I am snowbound here and decided to do the Marvel Mystery Oil piston soak again in my 1996 SC2 with 147,000 miles. The last time I did it the engine ran better so I figured I'd do it again seeing that my car isn't leaving the garage for a while, and see if this time it makes a difference with my oil consumption issue.

Saturday when the snow began falling I added 1 fluid ounce of Marvel Mystery Oil to each cylinder through the spark plug holes. 24 hours later (Sunday) I peeked in the spark plug holes and all the MMO had drained past the pistons and rings. I repeated the procedure again (Sunday), checked on it after another 24 hours (Monday), and again it all drained past the pistons/rings. (After 32 inches the snow stopped late Monday morning but the street hasn't been plowed yet...)

One quick question. Should I be alarmed that the MMO drains out of the cylinders like this? Is this a good thing, a bad thing, or just the way the MMO procedure happens?

Also, the last time I was under this car I noticed that the underside of the transmission and the driver's side of the engine were coated in motor oil. Perhaps my oil is not disappearing by getting burned (called "blow-by") but rather by leaking out a gasket or two! Or maybe a combination of the two...
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Old 02-17-2003, 09:42 PM   #2
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The drain by indicates that the rings (compression and oil control) aren't sealing the best they could. That being said, and if you are really concerned, a compression test would be the next step. CONSISTANT readings in all 4 cylinders above the 180PSI range are nothing to worry about. The oil covering the lower end of the engine "may" be. Keep the oil topped up till spring when you can have a look yourself and then completely degrease the engine and powerwash the underside. Monitor carefully the next several days after to locate the leak and then decide to repair or ignore based on your findings. Oil use in itself is not really a problem per se' as long as the level in the crankcase (and hence available for use by the engine) is maintained at proper levels.
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Old 02-18-2003, 04:45 AM   #3
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I don't know. From my understanding, unless you have total seal rings or some similar oil/compression-controlled rings, there will always be "leak-down" with something as low viscosity as MMO...
I think in a 24 hour span, very few set-ups would hold MMO in the cc...
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Old 02-18-2003, 05:00 AM   #4
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David,
Just reread my post and I may have you unnecessarily alarmed. The leak down over 24 HOURS is more TYPICAL than not. I meant to imply that a compression check will better confirm the condition of the rings/valve guide seals and combustion chambers themselves...OH, and yeah, fix the oil leak come spring...
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Old 02-18-2003, 02:03 PM   #5
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Thanks for all the advice!

Oh, I am not alarmed. Each weekend I top off the motor oil in my Saturns as needed. One of them gets driven about 400 miles per week and the other about 100 miles per week.

I'd like to get the compression tests carried out one day for both Saturns. The results should be interesting. My hunch is that the compression is fine for both engines.

Yes, when spring arrives I'll clean up the engine bay and see if the source of the oil leaks is apparent. If not I'll bring my car to the Saturn retailer and let them take car of it. I think Heartbeat wrote they can pinpoint oil leaks by adding some sort of dye to the oil that glows under a blacklight or something to this effect.

I thought the MMO draining out was interesting. The spark plugs are back in. Anti-seize on the threads, di-electric grease on the tips, and 20 foot pounds of torque. Maybe tomorrow I'll get a few puffs of white smoke out of the exhaust pipe when I start the engine.
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Old 02-18-2003, 03:23 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by David 93 SL2m
I thought the MMO draining out was interesting. The spark plugs are back in. Anti-seize on the threads, di-electric grease on the tips, and 20 foot pounds of torque. Maybe tomorrow I'll get a few puffs of white smoke out of the exhaust pipe when I start the engine.
Couldn't wait! I started the engine in the garage with the door open of course and just like the first time I did the MMO piston soak there was a puff of white smoke for the first 5 to 10 seconds, then just regular exhaust. After 30 seconds I shut the engine off. Now if my street would only get plowed... (It had about 2.5 feet of snow but the temperature is above freezing and it is beginning to melt and compress now.)
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Old 02-18-2003, 07:44 PM   #7
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I'd be ready to change the oil since the balance and the viscosity has been altered.
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Old 02-18-2003, 08:37 PM   #8
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Good point. 1 fl. oz. per cylinder * 4 cylinders * 3 applications = 12 fl. oz. and that is almost a 10% solution in the motor oil.
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Old 02-19-2003, 06:17 AM   #9
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I had no results with this chemical but the B-12 has cut the drinking in half with one application. Wish someone would try the Lube Control.
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Old 02-19-2003, 11:51 AM   #10
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SLeeper suggested the B-12 too but I haven't looked for it yet...

B-12 will be my next step. Until then, I top off the motor oil weekly as needed.
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