Help! Mazda 626

Help! I was driving down the highway at 65 mph. My rpm gauge was reading 6. The red part of the gauge start at 7. It wasn’t switching gears and the engine was very loud. Then I heard a knocking, so I pulled over. As I did that- the battery light came on and the car died. When I try to start it, it does nothing. The lights work, Windows, etc…nothing engine wise, though. A man stopped to help me. He said that I have zero oil. I have had an oil leak for years now. I’ve taken it to get fixed 3 times and no one has been able to stop it. I put in a quart or two every week. Anyways…he said my alternator belt broke and it threw oil in a puddle behind my car. The transmission wasn’t switching gears, he said and because it does nothing when I go to start it…he thinks I blew the whole engine and it is seized up. What do you guys think??? It’s a Mazda 626. Year 2000. He told me to take it to a junkyard and buy a new car. It has 180,000 miles

I have one free tow…so I need to know whether to take it to a mechanic or just home…or junk it.

Since it sounds like you are not able to check on things yourself I would spend the $100 or so for a mechanic to diagnose your troubles and see what it would cost to fix. Then you can decide what to do from there.

It also sounds like the person who stopped to help you does not know much either. Like asemaster says you need a real mechanics advice and then if it is ready for salvage they will have someone to haul it off and you might get enough to pay for the mechanics time.

+2 for asemaster because you need the opinion of a good mechanic at this point.

With apparent engine and transmission problems, you are likely to end up scrapping this car. However, I’d be nervous making this decision without a diagnosis and estimate, so I think it’s worth the cost to find out, especially if the tow is free.

Well…just from what you say it sounds like the sun has set on this engine. I have to wonder why you would allow your motor to spin at 6 Grand when you knew something wasnt quite right. I mean thats some pretty serious momentum there. If you had no oil in the engine then its toast. Not sure if you seized it or broke something internal but all possible failure modes are on the table at 6 Grand with no oil. Sorry this isnt a more upbeat message but I have to wonder why you rev’d the engine like that when something was awry. Im confused about the Alternator belt issue and some kind of oil in a puddle behind your vehicle statement also… Long Story short it sounds like you did some nasty engine damage to your 626. Its more than likely DOA at this point. Of course since the details you have given are indeed murky…the guys here suggesting a professional opinion is certainly valid. Depending upon how much you like this vehicle would dictate your next moves.


Sorry but I think you “threw a rod” which means your engine is gone and not repairable. The oil puddle is likely due to parts of the motor put a hole in the oil pan when they flew apart. The drive belt broke as a result of the sudden stopping of the motor. And, the transmission has problems too.

All this means fixing your car requires replacement of the motor, and repair or replace the transmission too. If the body is in good shape this might be worth doing, but it will be something like $2000 and more if you can find a decent used motor very cheap.

Some junk yards do this kind of work if they have a donor car in their inventory.

My inclination is that a bearing probably spun and the engine probably seized. Or, as already suggested, caused a rod to pop. I’d bet the front (or rear) main seal was leaking and the excess pressure in the crankcase from going down the highway at 6K pushed the oil out through the seal, which may have been leaking for some time.

But it’s just a wild guess, as they all are. It needs to be looked at. For the record, I don’t think the good Samaritan gave him bad advice at all. Except that I would have suggested considering a boneyard or rebuilt engine instead. I agree with the good Samaritan that the engine is probably seized.