Oil problems?

I have a 96 camry that has a minor oil leak. I have taken it in to get checked, and the mechanic told us that as long as I’m willing to keep putting oil in it every month, I don’t have to fix anything. However, lately the car has been making a burning smell, especially when I turn on the heater, and when the car is low on oil. Also, my oil cap has some yellow gunk on it. I’m concerned that this means water is mixing with my oil. What do you all think? Thanks

The burning smell is the leaked oil on the hot engine or maybe dripping onto the exhaust system.

Are you losing any coolant? If so, there is cause for concern about the yellow gunk on the oil fill cap.

If you’re not losing any coolant it’s probably just condensation, which seems to be worse in winter. If you drive a lot of short trips the engine won’t get warm enough for long enough to evaporate the moisture.

The only cure for the burnt oil smell is to repair the leak. What’s leaking? Is it a gasket or a seal?

Winter driving conditions can sludge up an engine very quickly…The engine never warms up completely, water (from combustion blow-by) condenses and forms the sludge. Allowing you oil level to get low compounds the problem…

How many MILES on the Camry??

The gunk on the oil cap is most likely just due to moisture and be no real problem. The burning smell may be oil dripping on the exhaust system which causes a stinky odor.