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2006 equinox oil consumption

I have a 2006 equinox with 74000 miles that consumes up to 2+ quarts of oil every 2000 to 3000 miles between oil changes and the water in the fluid section of the car drops about one gallon of water thus causing the car to over heat what could be the problem. The engine light always comes on when i have more or less then 1/2 a tank of gas. The manual said this could be the gas cap that is producing the problem and is there a solution.


If you are lucky, all you need is a new head gasket (or two if a V6). If not lucky, a new engine.

You have a trouble code stored in your car’s computer. The gas cap is one of thousands of possible problems. Take the car to a local Advance Auto, Auto Zone, or similar store that will read the codes for free. Then, post back.

What mleich says is good advice. I’d add:

-If you’re losing coolant, it could just be a leak, not necessarily a head gasket. On certain engines, it could also be an intake manifold gasket that’s causing problems. Get this checked out asap, for if coolant is leaking into the oil, it will quickly destroy your engine.

-Try a different brand of oil to reduce oil consumption. Eg. if you’re using Pennzoil, try a different brand, like Valvoline. You might also try a full-synthetic oil. My old 94 used to use at least a quart between oil changes before I switched to synthetic. Currently it uses maybe 1/2 quart with over 260K on the odometer.

Synthetic oil costs a little more, but if you’re dumping oil in the engine, you will quickly erase any savings you gained by using cheaper oil. Plus, if the car is using oil, it’s probably leaving deposits behind in the engine. Your engine should stay cleaner with synthetic.

The very first order of business is to have a qualified mechanic evaluate this for a head gasket breach. There’s no point in doing anything else until that is checked out.

Find the coolant leak, the other stuff is just a minor annoyance by comparison…

“Could you please do a cooling system pressure test and see where my coolant is going? Thank You.”

Say NOTHING about a head gasket. Let the mechanic determine where the coolant is going, you don’t need to coach him…

Caddyman is right about that. In my mind I’m thinking find out if the head is leaking b/c if it is your should just scrap the thing.

But don’t plant any ideas in the head of the mechanic who will look at it.

Your car is sick and needs a good diagnosis. Sounds like a blown head gasket. It might be an expensive repair now, but keep driving it and you are going to destroy the motor completely.

More needs to be known about the vehicle such as whether you bought it new or used, how often you change the oil, and how chronic this overheating problem has been. Overheating can ruin piston rings and cause oil consumption problems and this vehicle should not be using that much oil between changes.

There will be a number of tests involved (compression and/or leakdown, hydrocarbon, cooling system pressure test, etc, etc)
You need to be prepared to pay for having those tests performed and you should not assume that the gas cap is the cause of the CEL illuiminating.

The first thing I would do is run a compression test. If there’s a problem with even one cylinder this means major engine work or an engine rebuild/replacement; all depending upon the results.
You should check the engine oil right now and make sure that it’s not contaminated with coolant because that will wipe an engine out.

Thank You all for the input it sounds like I could have a big problem.thanks again for your insight