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MG MGA - Burning oil

Hi guys, panic panic, no only joking, but a bit concerned, the last few runs I've done I'm using oil, bit of smoke at the rear, burning oil, I'm off to France at the weekend, I'll just take some oil and keep topping up and have a good look at it when I get home, just wondering if there was any short term thing I could try that would stop, or slow Down the process, until I get back.

Cheers Jack.
Jack New Forest

If you are burning oil then I would also take a spare set of spark plugs - quick swap over if they oil up or get sooted up. burning oil could be a broken piston ring or maybe just worn bores - oil also can get up the push rods - so no quick fix there I'm afraid.
Cam Cunningham

Thanks cam, yes looks like a big job when I get home, I've got plugs.

Cheers Jack
Jack New Forest

I wonder if Colyn keeps valve guides and reamers in his travelling spares? Probably the issue. Not a show stopper.

Enjoy your tour, Jack.


Steve Gyles

Jack, just take plenty of oil with you, if the car is running ok then just live with it and keep topping up your sump.
It's easier to carry in small 1 litre plastic containers rather than a big single 5 litre one.
If you run out, just buy the nearest available spec oil, I used 15/40 with no problems.

Think of the blue smoke as a sort of extra gauge, if the smoke disappears, then you have run out of oil!☺

Steve, if like Jack i had spent so much time and effort in developing my James Bond car smoke-screen, it would just be foolish to carry the tools in the car to fix it.☺

Seriously though Jack, you probably know this but, if your exhaust smokes constantly but particularly under hard acceleration, then it is probably due to cylinder bore and ring wear.
If it smokes mostly on the overrun, for example -car in gear coasting downhill with the throttle closed and using engine braking to slow it down,
then it is probably just worn valve guides.
The engine running with throttle closed causes a vacuum effect in the combustion chamber and this draws air and oil down through the valve guides. You then get a distinctive cloud of oil smoke when you open the throttle to accelerate away.


Colyn Firth

Steve: come off it, Colyn will have a complete spare head.
Graeme Williams

Hi Jack

What about as a temporary measure using an additive. STP used to do a stop smoke additive, don't know if they still do, but it might get you around France for a few miles. Don't worry about filling the boot with oil we do have places that sell it in France, usually cheaper than UK, supermarkets keep a good range.

B Bridgens

Another possibly could be the value stem seals. A friend's 1500 looked like he was doing insect fogging. On inspection and value stem seals were hard a stone. The plugs were badly oiled from that. Changed the seals and you could drive behind him without getting your wind screen oiled. He was able to change the seals without pulling the head by filled the cylinder with compressed air to keep the valve in place.
Keith Lowman

This thread was discussed between 04/07/2016 and 12/07/2016

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