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2012 Volkswagen Passat S 4dr Sedan 2.5L Manual PZEV

2012 Volkswagen Passat
Trim Info:
Front Wheel Drive, 4 Door Sdn, Mid-Size
21 (Est) mpg city / 32 (Est) mpg hwy
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November 13, 2012, 4:13 pm

Nick P
 

Question: 98 VW passat 2.8 V6 sandy colored, foamy oil?

An engine light came on yesterday afternoon on my drive home from work. I thought nothing of it because an exhaust code has been coming up rather frequently due to the age of the car, however, when I got up for work this morning I checked the oil level and noticed that there was a foamy, sand color, on the dip stick. I removed the oil cap but it was clean in there. I had no choice so I drove the car for a half hour to work. There were no drivability issues and the temperature stayed right where it should be. I asked several people with more automotive knowledge than myself and the general consensus seems to be that it's a head gasket. Just looking for some more insight and hopefully a different diagnosis because this is something that I can't really afford right now.


November 22, 2012, 11:09 am

Elizabeth K
Expert Mechanic

Coffe-colored oil is a sign that there is water in the engine crankcase. The number one way that it gets there is when a blown head gasket allows coolant to enter the crankcase. Overheating an engine will warp the cylinder head, allowing the head gasket to start leaking.

There are several different ways to verify that a head gasket is blown, before undertaking the repair. Your best bet is to have a reputable shop make the diagnosis, and make sure you keep an eye on the coolant level. If it's an internal coolant leak, then level could get too low and you could overheat it again, making things worse.


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