i drive a 2002 honda crv and i have some major ?s about the oil fed fires. i have 2 little ones and i want all the info i can get about it!

Asked by Aug 15, 2009 at 08:16 PM about the 2002 Honda CR-V

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

1 Answer

315

Well my father has that vehicle so here is what I gathered concerning that issue... Honda recommends an unusually think viscosity oil 5w20 for that engine, (meaning it is very thin) and as with all engines, as they get up there in mileage and age the gaskets in the cylinder head and valve cover (top of the engine) tend to wear and leak. Since the oil is already very thin it finds its way past the gasket rather easily and starts to drip down the engine onto the exhaust manifold, which can get blisteringly hot. The way the engine is laid-out the intake manifold (cold air to fuel combustion) is towards the front of the vehicle, and the exhaust manifold (the hot exhaust from combustion) is behind the engine almost against the rear of the engine bay where there is little airflow. A fire can occur when enough oil flows past the gasket and accumulates on the exhaust manifold and then ignites due to the high ambient temperature of the exhaust manifold. The best way to prevent this, in my opinion, is to use a heavier oil, such as a 10w20, or 10w30 after the vehicle has accumulated approximately 60k miles. If you are really paranoid about this issue, you can just use a cloth to wipe the top-backside of the engine when it is cool and if you see any oil there, then you know you are at risk for this issue and you can just have your valve cover gasket replaced at an independent shop or the dealership, but this becomes more of an issue with vehicles that are both high in mileage and are driven for long distances at a time. That about covers it.

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