Coolant in Pennzoil Synthetic Oil.. Symptoms??

Joined
Jul 15, 2009
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MI
Hi everyone, I have an 04 Aztek running Pennzoil synthetic. I had blackstone check my oil on the last change and they confirmed coolant in the oil. I've been to the dealer twice regarding this issue and they are disputing that there is anything wrong and they do not see coolant in the oil. The dealer says that an INDEPENDENT lab analysis will not hold up with GM or GMPP(extended warranty)which makes no sense to me. The dealership was looking for some visual signs vs a scientific analysis. They rechecked and could not find a problem. They added a dye to find the leak. I took it in yesterday and again, no problem. Does anyone happen to know if coolant affects synthetic oil differently than conventional? I have been using synthetic. I was curious if it still shows the same symptoms such as white milky and whatever else?
 
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ON, Canada eh?
First of all I'm so sorry for you... An Aztek. Second... to BITOG. Third, here is my answer to your question... Coolant will affect Synthetic and Dino the same. You need a good amount to turn the oil milky coloured. A minor leak could just show up on a lab test. All my lab tests come back with 0% so if yours comes back any higher I would be raising [email protected]# with GM, although they are experts of getting out of doing Warranty Work IMO. Why would the lab state there is presence of "coolant" in the oil when there isn't? You could always run a test on your Aztek and another GM vehicle that has a similar engine to be able to undisputedely prove it to them! ;\) Guess that's why they are in the state they are in.
 
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Angelia

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thanks for the welcome and the Aztek comment... It may look like a sneaker but its about as useful as a swiss army knife! I have been raising [censored] but they look at me and basically say oh well. I asked him do they test the oil to confirm my findings and he said no, they work on visual analysis.... Right... I'll keep trying as my warranty just expired during this whole back and forth. not sure why I can't figure out how to attach or copy my report into here... when I do its unreadable.
 
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I was only joking... My uncle has one, and while not the most attractive IMO, it is very versatile as you state. It drives very nice I have to give it that. \:\! Visual Analysis? ... Yup sounds like GM to me! Their QA department works on "Days Off" and the "Winging it method" it would appear. Here is one of the Analysis I have had done on the Santa Fe. I don't have any other scanned but you can see what I mean by 0% The Copper/Silicon was high due to a leaching gasket material that Kia/Hyundai uses that reacted to a fuel additive I used shortly before this UOA that caused the spiked numbers. Since this report the numbers have fallen to single digits and the wear metals are almost non-existent. Gotta get into the office so I can post these for everyone.
 
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Patchogue, NY
Here's what pops into my head on this one: 1) If coolant is going into the oil, the coolant level should decrease somewhat in the overflow tank. Also what was the percentage of anti-freeze in the oil. 2) Also wondering if anti-freeze is getting into the oil, then wouldn't oil be getting into the anti-freeze? 3) From what I remember reading on this website is numerous 3.1 & 3.4 liter GM engines eating up intake manifold gaskets causing anti-freeze to get into the oil. 4) If the leak is occuring within the engine itself, I don't think the dye test would yield any useful results. May I suggest bringing your Aztek to another GM dealer? Ed B.
 
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The Pontiac Aztek uses the GM 3.4L. I believe it, like the 3.1L V6, is susceptible to the Dexcool coolant/intake manifold problem. The manifold gasket is likely beginning to leak coolant. The dealership is playing dumb. He has replaced many, many intake gaskets already on these engines. The repair on my 3.1L was about $400 at an independent garage. The dealership will be double that amount. The class action lawsuit payouts are already over.
 

Angelia

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here is the best part... my intake gasket has been replaced 3 times by different dealers! The thermostat once and the radiator also!
 
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Jan 3, 2009
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Illinois
 Originally Posted By: Angelia
here is the best part... my intake gasket has been replaced 3 times by different dealers! The thermostat once and the radiator also!
Yikes! That must be discourageing. How about the lemon law?
 
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Wow, I thought I had bad luck. The Dexcool could be working on other gaskets in the engine now. I'm just going to shut up and listen now......I might learn something from you.
 
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Indiana
I'm going through the same thing with my '96 Skylark, but it isn't under warranty, so I'll be on my own to either muster up the guts to buy a service manual and tackle the job myself or take it to my indpendent mechanic who's done tons of performance type work on my other car. Just make sure you get the full problem-solver gaskets from Fel-Pro so you won't have to go through this again. Here's a site that sells the full kit for a good price: http://wot-tech.com/shop/all/large-port-intake-manifold-gasket-set/prod_118.html
 
Joined
Jul 3, 2005
Messages
36,201
Location
NY
 Originally Posted By: Angelia
Hi everyone, I have an 04 Aztek running Pennzoil synthetic. I had blackstone check my oil on the last change and they confirmed coolant in the oil. I've been to the dealer twice regarding this issue and they are disputing that there is anything wrong and they do not see coolant in the oil. The dealer says that an INDEPENDENT lab analysis will not hold up with GM or GMPP(extended warranty)which makes no sense to me. The dealership was looking for some visual signs vs a scientific analysis. They rechecked and could not find a problem. They added a dye to find the leak. I took it in yesterday and again, no problem. Does anyone happen to know if coolant affects synthetic oil differently than conventional? I have been using synthetic. I was curious if it still shows the same symptoms such as white milky and whatever else?
Let me start this off by saying here is what a FRIEND did in a similar situation with a local Chevy dealer. UOA stated he had a coolant leak, dealer said no. Dealer refused to do their own UOA, and said they couldn't detect a leak. He went to another dealer and got a similar reply. He went to the first dealer and had the service writer look at the coolant level in the overflow tank. Drove the car about a month or two, and took a turkey baster and drew out about 2 ounces or so of coolant, and squirted it into the oil. Drove over to the dealer and showed him the level was lower and played stupid. After a spirited debate, and some cursing, he had both head gaskets replaced and hasn't had a problem in about 2 years. Flame away it worked for him. Sometimes you get backed into a corner, and you are 100% certain but helpless dealing with a big dealership.
 
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Sometimes you have to grab the bull by the horns, especially when the dealer wants to play hardball!
 

Angelia

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MI
Well my husband went this morning and rec'd the same result. He was pretty mad afterwards. He took the oil cap off and showed the service manager what was on it. He said because the dye reacts to UV, you can notice it in the sun. When you look at the oil cap, he said you could see green speckles! The dealer was trying to tell him it was condensation and that any coolant would immediately turn the oil to sludge. I guess they went backl and forth with no result. So I don't know much about engines but if I saw green speckles in brown oil... wouldn't you be concerned!! oooh I like the turkey baster idea but I feel like its already in there... how much more proof do you need.
 
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Joined
Dec 11, 2006
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Indiana
 Originally Posted By: Angelia
Well my husband went this morning and rec'd the same result. He was pretty mad afterwards. He took the oil cap off and showed the service manager what was on it. He said because the dye reacts to UV, you can notice it in the sun. When you look at the oil cap, he said you could see green speckles! The dealer was trying to tell him it was condensation and that any coolant would immediately turn the oil to sludge. I guess they went backl and forth with no result. So I don't know much about engines but if I saw green speckles in brown oil... wouldn't you be concerned!! oooh I like the turkey baster idea but I feel like its already in there... how much more proof do you need.
Is the car under a full warranty? If so, for how long? If you're afraid the failure won't occur before the warranty expires, but will be stuck paying for it afterward, accelerate the process and dump a half quart of coolant/water mix into the oil. You'll spin bearing and the dealer will be forced to replace the whole engine instead of just doing the easier and less expensive gasket replacement.
 
Joined
Jun 5, 2009
Messages
3,252
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Florida
 Originally Posted By: Angelia
Well my husband went this morning and rec'd the same result. He was pretty mad afterwards. He took the oil cap off and showed the service manager what was on it. He said because the dye reacts to UV, you can notice it in the sun. When you look at the oil cap, he said you could see green speckles! The dealer was trying to tell him it was condensation and that any coolant would immediately turn the oil to sludge. I guess they went backl and forth with no result. So I don't know much about engines but if I saw green speckles in brown oil... wouldn't you be concerned!! oooh I like the turkey baster idea but I feel like its already in there... how much more proof do you need.
See if there is any "coke foam" around the inside of the radiator cap.
 
Joined
Feb 13, 2003
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Windsor,Ontario
Bought a new S-10 in 1985.My brothers ,whom are all mechanics,told me to change out the intake manifold gaskets or they will leak.This is on a new truck with the 2.8L V6.I took on the job myself ,with their help,and put Fel-Pro gaskets on a 2 month old vehicle.Drove it 16 years 369,000km with no trouble.My father had a 1984 S-15 didn't do the gaskets and coolant filled up his crank.My sister bought a 1986 S-10 and didn't take their advice,same thing.Just goes to show you how far back this stuff goes.If you like this vehicle f*ck the dealer,do it yourself or get it done,drive the wheels off it and tell everyone your story so they never have this happen to them.By the way my new Oldsmobile lived just past it's warranty before the bottom end died in the 3.8L due to coolant seepage.GM is dead,long live the king!
 
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TN, USA
I also have a 2003 Pontiac Montana with the same engine. The intake manifold gasket problem got fixed for the 2003 model year onwards with new gaskets. Look behind Power Steering pump on the engine, and if it is dry you do not have gasket leaking problem.
 
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