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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been doing a lot of driving in the snow/ice the past few days. I've been noticing a oil burning smell coming inside the cabin. This is new, but not unlike other Hondas I've owned. It comes and goes. The car isn't overheating at all.
The oil is a little lower than usual but nothing crazy.

I assume I am leaking some oil, likely the rear main seal...but maybe something else? I haven't been able to crawl underneath to inspect things. I am hoping using high mileage oil will improve the leak.

What else could this be? Where should I be looking?

Also last oil change I did not replace the crush washer (stupid me). I've noticed some light seepage around the oil pan. Is it possible the oil is heating up and causing the smell?
 

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Probably oil leaking from somewhere and dripping onto the exhaust system.
This happened on another vehicle of mine when the old leaky valve cover seal allowed oil to drip down onto the exhaust header.
 

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Nobili spiritus embiggens pequeño sparus tyre.
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2007 Pilot EXL, 2012 Civic LX, 2007 VTX1300C
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unfortunately with our engine there are several places for oil to leak and seep out.
the leak would have to be up top near the valve/rocker covers to drip onto the exhaust and cause vapor you may be smelling. could try a reseal product OR fix the problem by replacing the seal or gasket that is actually leaking. should not take too much time to track this down. may have to clean up the areas first with a degreaser then check a day or 2 or week later for fresh oil seepage.

with my engine fast approaching 200k I will be doing a top end seal job this spring
 

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I've been doing a lot of driving in the snow/ice the past few days. I've been noticing a oil burning smell coming inside the cabin. This is new, but not unlike other Hondas I've owned. It comes and goes. The car isn't overheating at all.
The oil is a little lower than usual but nothing crazy.

I assume I am leaking some oil, likely the rear main seal...but maybe something else? I haven't been able to crawl underneath to inspect things. I am hoping using high mileage oil will improve the leak.

What else could this be? Where should I be looking?

Also last oil change I did not replace the crush washer (stupid me). I've noticed some light seepage around the oil pan. Is it possible the oil is heating up and causing the smell?
Have you looked under the seats for a pair of oily green jockey shorts?

I doubt it's the drain plug, it wouldn't get hot enough down there to burn unless you have gravity turned off and it's running up the engine. Maybe the oil filter or valve cover gaskets? Check the outside of the cats or shields or exhaust pipes downwind for burnt oil stains or oil on the surrounding structure.
 

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Clean off / degrease the engine block as best you can and then keep an eye on it to trace the source of the leak. As mentioned above the oil is likely dripping onto something hot then burning off.
 

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I've reused oil plug gasket/washer for years with no leak issues.
Most common place is the valve cover gaskets, if they have never been replaced. A great concern would be any leaks under the timing cover. I'd inspect my timing belt to ensure it's not oily. Oily belt will cause premature failure. If your over 200k miles, it will be time for a oil pump and pan reseal. The vvt gaskets is another common place for a leak.
145449
 

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If you are going to remove the valve covers to replace the gaskets, take the opportunity to inspect/adjust the valve clearance.
And dont forget to replace the spark plug tube seals and valve cover grommets too.
 
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@Jack Vogt have you figured out what the root cause is?

mine has been having the same symptom: the transmission part has been wet. I have replaced the vvt gaskets, and while doing the valve adjustment, replaced valve cover gaskets & grommets, spark plug tube seals. Also replaced two camshaft gaskets. I believe that some of leak sources have been plugged, but not all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
@Jack Vogt have you figured out what the root cause is?

mine has been having the same symptom: the transmission part has been wet. I have replaced the vvt gaskets, and while doing the valve adjustment, replaced valve cover gaskets & grommets, spark plug tube seals. Also replaced two camshaft gaskets. I believe that some of leak sources have been plugged, but not all.
No, It comes and goes. Every Honda I've ever driven has smelled a little bit. I'm not concerned.
 
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