1988 Honda Civic - Burns oil

Messages
341
Location
Upstate, NY
I just became the owner of a 1988 Honda Civic with about 175,000 miles on it. It is a 1.5L 4 cylinder, 4spd automatic transmission. It burns oil, and as far as I can tell has been fed a steady diet of generic 10w-30. Looking inside the oil filler cap, there is definately some buildup, varnish I believe, doesn't look like sludge. What should I put in this to help the consumption and to clean it up a bit. I was thinking a diesel oil, or a high mileage. Can this motor handle a 15w-40? How about MMO or chemtool dumped in the crankcase immediately before changing the oil? I know Auto-RX is an option, but right now I'm looking for a quick fix, as the car isn't on the road yet. If the car proves to be worth keeping, I'll do the auto-rx. Thanks
 
Messages
1,377
Location
Elizabeth. Colorado
Well I have an 89 Prelude and a 90 Accord. Both were high miles but spotless inside. They both are oil burners too. At first I thought they were leaking it out but after I fixed both of them (way too many rubber o-rings and rubber gaskets) I found out they burned their fair share. I think it is a Honda thing because my step sons 94 Accord is a oil burner too. I have tried all types, weights, and Auto Rx too with no change.
 

Clement

Thread starter
Messages
341
Location
Upstate, NY
What I'm thinking of doing is pulling the spark plugs, spraying in a bunch of B12-Chemtool in the cylinders. Would doing this help any if the rings are gunked up? I would do this immediately before an oil change, of course.
 
Messages
107
Location
Averill Park, NY
Clement, Hmm, I'd stay away from the shock therapy you're thinking of. My brother in law has a 1992 Civic that's an oil and coolant burner. The first thing we did was to put Rotella 15w40 in it. Now, this might not be what the factory recommends, but he's still getting 50+ mpg and burns oil a little slower now...the coolant loss is another thing I have to look into when I have a chance... So, I'd try a couple of low milage changes with Rotella or something similar and see what happens. Bogatyr
 

Clement

Thread starter
Messages
341
Location
Upstate, NY
Burns oil means a little foul smelling cloud of smoke follows you around. Not noticeable when the car is idling, but hit the gas and you get it, not as bad as some cars I've seen, but it is there. I don't know what the consumption rate is as I just aquired it yesterday, and it is not on the road yet. I want to do what I can to it before I get it on the road.
 
Messages
345
Location
Northern California
Clement, Just for another opinion,I have had three Hondas and none of them burned any oil. Many Hondas run well beyond your present mileage. Two of mine have gone longer than yours and I am hopeing the third one will also. I think you might want to do some checking into why it is burning oil. Perhaps a compression check and a leak down test. Then you may have a better idea as to why you are burning oil and can possibly come up with a solution. I suppose you already have ruled out leakage. I would try to isolate the problem then look for a solution. Some times quick fixes are hard to find. A little thicker oil shouldn't hurt the oil burning issue. I would probably start with the HM 10-30 first. I doubt throwing some cleaner in the engine will have much chance of success. From what I have read here the Auto RX has the most chance of success. Still cleaning may not be the solution to your oil burning problem.
 
Messages
81
Location
Silver Spring, MD
quote:
Clement: I just became the owner of a 1988 Honda Civic with about 175,000 miles on it. It is a 1.5L 4 cylinder, 4spd automatic transmission. It burns oil, and as far as I can tell has been fed a steady diet of generic 10w-30. Looking inside the oil filler cap, there is definately some buildup, varnish I believe, doesn't look like sludge. What should I put in this to help the consumption and to clean it up a bit. I was thinking a diesel oil, or a high mileage. Can this motor handle a 15w-40? How about MMO or chemtool dumped in the crankcase immediately before changing the oil?
It would be interesting to see what the compression looks like. My wife's '90 1.5L has 145k on it and is as tight as it was when it was bought. That's with a steady diet of, primarily, Mobil 1 5W-30.
 
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