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edited November 2011 in Repair and Maintenance
I have a 2008 passat 2.0T turbo - it goes through oil like crazy. Had it to my neighborhood
mechanic and he said it was bone dry, and they could not find any leaks (this is the second time) He suggested I take it to the dealer and have them run diagnostics. Has anyone experienced this and what it the problem


  • What do you mean by bone dry? Are you seriously saying the crankcase was empty, or nearly empty, of engine oil and there was none showing on the dipstick? And this is not the first instance of running it dry?

    If this is the case then you do not need to run diagnostics; you need to unload the car with a damaged engine.

    Oil consumption with no leaks means it's burning oil and this is usually due to piston rings. Most ring problems are caused by overheating, improper break-in, failure to change the oil regularly, or (drumroll), making a chronic habit of not checking the oil and running it low.
  • I'm assuming this car has been properly maintained, with oil changes and fluid level checks at recommended intervals. If so, VW engines have been notorious for years and years to burn oil caused by leaky valve stem seals. It starts with a half quart in 3000 miles, but slowly inches upward to a couple quarts or more in the same interval. You should notice some blue smoke especially at start up, and an oily tailpipe end if this is the problem. Suggest you Google "VW Passat valve stem seals" and see if you turn up anything already known. If that's the problem, replacing the valve stem seals will set you back a bit, but it's likely a manageable sum. And VW techs do it so much they can do it in their sleep. Best of luck.
  • VWs do seem to have a higher incidence rate of rapid oil consumption than other brands, but any engine that has been "bone dry" of oil, and operated that way, is going to use a lot of oil. You might try having the valve stem seals replaced as recommended by George above, but running the engine out of oil repeatedly may have caused other problems and rapid oil consumption may still be an issue, as could premature engine failure in the not-so-distant future. This is why one needs to get in the habit of checking your automotive fluids on a regular basis. Old clunkers aren't the only vehicles that need this attention (in fact, neither of mine use a measurable amount of oil between changes, and they average 17 years of age and over 200k miles).
  • You need to check your oil level between oil changes. Bone dry means you are not checking your oil level and that is living dangerously. If you add a quart of oil every 1,000 miles (or less frequently) then your oil use isn't worthy of an expensive engine tear down. Just add a quart of oil as needed between oil changes.

    Some motors use more oil between changes than others. Some motor oils burn off more quickly than other brands. Check your oil level every week or two. When the level is 1/2 way between the marks add 1/2 quart of oil to bring the level back up to the full mark. Follow this routine for a few months and see how much oil your car uses between oil changes.
  • The oil could also disappear through turbo seals and into the intake.
    With Ford and others offering more turbo engines to the non-hood-opening public I predict trouble ahead.
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