99 Acura Integra GSR burns lots of oil

My 99 integra burns at least a quart of oil every 750 miles. I have 105K on it. It started at about the 80K point. The Honda garage said it was because it was old. The Acura garage said I needed to rebuild the engine. The local garage said I had a leak and they replaced the oil pan gasket. The car still goes through oil. I have maintained the car very well, oil changes every 3K to 4K miles at the dealer. I don’t drive the car hard, but I do a mix of city and highway driving and some sitting in traffic. So has anyone else had any experience with this? I thought Acuras were supposed to last especially if you take care of them. I am debating whether or not to replace the engine or to get a new(er) car. Right now I ride around with a case of oil in the trunk. This is a great car otherwise.

Oil pan gaskets can be subject to increased crankcase pressures due to wear forcing oil past old gaskets. It all goes back to the wear.

Has anyone performed a compression test? That would tell you as definitively as anything else the condition of the engine’s insides.

If the compression is bad, low and/or uneven, my recommendation would be to drive around with a case of oil in the trunk. The car is not valuable enough to warrant a rebuild.

When it comes to an engine burning oil, you have to look at the broad picture.

Most automobile manufacturers consider an engine that consumes one quart of oil per 1,000 miles as being normal on a brand new vehicle. This includes Honda Motor Company. So with the mileage on your engine, it’s doing pretty good.

I’ve seen engines use oil to a certain point and then stop using oil. So you just have to monitor the oil consumption and get a feel for when to add oil. It could go another 100,000 miles just by adding oil when it needs it.


When you say it is burning oil, do you actually mean it is burning oil, or do you just mean that you are losing oil and you don’t know how?

If it’s burning oil, you’re gonna need new rings.

If you’re just leaking oil, you can figure out where by carefully inspecting your engine, and looking for where the oil trail is. If you’re having trouble seeing it, there’s an ultraviolet dye you can get that you add to the oil (made by a company called Tracer Products). Run the car for awhile, then shine a blacklight around when it’s dark out, and the oil leak will glow for you.

Another good place to look in addition to what’s already been suggested is the drain plug on the oil pan. It’s not terribly rare, especially if you take it to places like Jiffy Lube, for them to overtighten the plug, break it, and then oil leaks out.

Another suggestion for you: Find your local Honda / Acura club and talk to them. Most niche clubs like that will be very helpful. If you were in my area, we’d probably fix it for you for the cost of the parts and beer :wink:

Find a new mechanic, get a proper analysis done. It could be something simpler than an engine rebuild.

Honda uses Alumasil blocks…For all practical purposes, they are not rebuildable. Few cars today are worth the effort…

It’s either leaking it or burning it.
If it’s burning oil then it can only be the valve seals or the piston rings.

There is no test for valve seals but I would think with this kind of consumption you should see a blue poof of smoke upon startup.

The car being “old” is a pretty lame reason and the first step should be performing a compression test if this has not been done. And you need to make sure this test is done correctly and is not misinterpreted. People post on here all of the time about compression readings, even ones done by shops, that are claimed to be good when they are in fact not even close to that.

You might have the PCV system checked out too. If there’s abnormal pressure in the crankcase, it can force oil through weak seals to be burned or leak.

Unless you flogged the thing relentlessly, rings are an unlikely wear item. Check the PCV system as suggested.

You may have coked rings. Deposits will form in the upper ring area causing the rings to stick, making a good seal impossible.

I’d recommend using Auto-Rx (www.auto-rx.com. It’s a mixture of complex esters that will remove the deposits in the upper ring area (and just about everywhere else). You just add it at your next oil change and go about your business. You’ll tell if it’s working. You will see a change in consumption. It may even increase a bit before decreasing. It just means that complete freeing of the rings isn’t yet complete.

There are very few instances of a well maintained engine having ring wear. Almost totally unheard of in normal service. Even cars driven in a spirited manner don’t wear out rings. You report no plug fouling …no smoke …those are signs of WAY out of control blow-by and oil infiltration past the rings into the combustion chamber. What you have (I highly suspect) is relatively controlled blow-by that’s, more or less, metered to be otherwise transparent EXCEPT for oil consumption.

Never said he should rebuild. Pick up a junkyard B18-C and put it in.

105k miles is not “old” for a Honda/Acura engine. My 92 Accord has 265k miles. My wife’s 98 Accord has 238k miles. The 92 uses no oil. The 98 uses about 1/2 qt every 7000 miles, and has since it was new. Both cars have oil and filters changed at about 6500 miles. You’ve got another problem. Probably easier to just keep feeding oil to it and drive it.