Why is my car leaking oil?

Cars leak oil for any number of reasons, from a leaky valve cover to the actual oil filter itself. It’s impossible to say exactly why a car may be leaking oil until the source of the leak is identified. This should be your first step.

In order to determine the leak’s origin, you’ll need to be able to leave the car in place overnight. Lay out newspaper or a flap of cardboard large enough to cover the area from the front of your engine to just beyond the front tires, and come back again in 10 to 12 hours. When you return, make note of where the oil spots collected. By drawing an invisible line directly upward from the pool of oil, you’ll be able to identify the source of the leak. Once you’ve done that, inform your mechanic so they’ll know where to start.

Don’t have a mechanic? Search your local listings to find an auto repair shop near you.

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