Did I seize my engine

Asked by Jun 17, 2012 at 12:25 PM about the Pontiac Sunfire

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

my car started to smoke and stopped.  there was a very small amount of oil under the car and when the tow truck driver took it away there was alot of oil still coming out...did I ruin my engine or is there something in my car that would shut it off so not to damage the engine

9 Answers

63,055

Pull the oil dipstick & check the oil. If there's no oil on it check to make sure your drain plug didn't fall out. Did you recently have the oil changed? If so they may not have properly tightened the drain plug. Also, check your oil filter. Is it damaged or missing? Finally, check your oil pan for a hole. Maybe you ran over something & punctured it. After checking these things out & you KNOW you have oil in the engine, try re-starting it. Even if it just cranks but won't run, it's not seized.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Thank you for your answer and no the oil was changed back in April....Why would it smoke and shut off? I really appreciate your help

63,055

Where did the smoke come from? Tailpipe or engine compartment? If tailpipe, what color was the smoke? Blue is oil, grey is transmission fluid, white is coolant. Was the engine running smoothly before it quit or was it "chugging" and/or noisy? Did your oil light come on or, if you have a gauge, did it drop to 0 before the engine quit? Do you have an external oil cooler? If so, check that one of the lines isn't broken. Some vehicles have a safety feature that will shut down the engine to prevent damage if it loses oil suddenly. HTH. -Jim

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

the smoke came from the engine...grey smoke....it was chugging and when she hit the brake the car turned off...it is my 18 year old car she saw the oil light come on but didnt pay attenting to gauge....it only has 35,000 miles...I am hoping that it has the safety feature on it...I looked through the book but didnt find anything relating to this....again thank you

63,055

You're welcome. Check that you have oil in the engine & try cranking it over. If the engine cranks it's not seized. But the engine may be damaged. Honestly, it doesn't sound good at this point. :(

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
355

I think that engine is gone... from everything that i read it sounds like you need a new engine!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Thank you Mark for all your help....she hit a very large pot hole and put a hole in the oil pan....I really appreciate all your help.....I was afraid to try and start the car incase I would be the one to cause more damage

63,055

You're welcome. Glad you found the cause. -Jim

2,865

sounds like a broken rod that punched thru the pan causing the oil leak, new engine or new car whatever is most cost efficiwnt

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