Oil exploded everywhere
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Cadillac CTS First Generation Forum - 2003 - 2007 Discussion, Oil exploded everywhere in Cadillac CTS Coupe, Sport Sedan and Sport Wagon Forums; Hi everyone, I had an issue with my car today and was wondering if anyone could help me out. I ...
  1. #1
    cvadala7813's Avatar
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    Oil exploded everywhere

    Hi everyone,

    I had an issue with my car today and was wondering if anyone could help me out. I was cruising through a parking lot and all of a sudden there was a spray of oil through my mesh grill all over my hood and on my windshield. Like the title says it was an oil explosion! I went over a large speed bump where I could have bottomed out but I had my windows down and didnt hear any scraping. So after oil sprayed everywhere there was a blue cloud of smoke which I assume is from the oil spraying onto the engine and burning off. I pulled into a parking spot and shut the car off. Got out and oil was pouring out underneath the car. I have no idea what this means. I hope that someone can help, any thoughts please? I can try and describe this better if you have questions. I have a 2004 3.6L CTS with 100k miles on it.

    Thanks in advance!

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    simple2me's Avatar
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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    Could have busted the power steering cooling or a/c condensor. I don't know anything else that's going to spray oil out of the grill. Did it continue to spray oil when the car was shut-off? If so, that's the a/c condensor.

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    cvadala7813's Avatar
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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    It was only 1 quick spray of oil, like something busted and the pressure that was built up let loose and sprayed everywhere it could which happened to come out my grill and onto my window. After the initial burst there was no more spraying and just leaking out underneath the car. It was leaking out very quickly when I stopped almost like when you change the oil but I didn't get a good look exactly where it was leaking.

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    simple2me's Avatar
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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    Without being there to look at the car it's hard to say but a sudden spray from the grill sounds like the a/c condensor popped. Is there an oil spot on the ground and how much?

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    CTSUK's Avatar
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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    I take it the car still runs ok or have you not tried starting it?
    Last time something like that happened to me on another engine it was a rod had snapped its link and smashed through the block (this was on an old chevy 305 though).
    Either way oil that's escaping from the engine is never a good sign!
    Take a look around the engine to see where the most of the oil is and where it has been dripping, that will give you come clues as to where its come from or what side of the engine it's happened, if I had to take a guess it might be the oil cooler or one of the lines that connect to it.

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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    I did not try starting it afterwards since all of the oil was on the ground. I didn't want to harm the engine anymore than the damage already done. I wish I knew a little bit more about this stuff but I am pretty clueless. My uncle is going to take a look at it tomorrow so I might have more details then.

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    simple2me's Avatar
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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    If there's engine oil all over the ground then something else definitely went wrong. Best to have someone look at it.

  9. #8
    A48WillyzGuy's Avatar
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    BEFORE attempting to start the engine, check the oil level on the dipstick. Do not attempt to start it if there's no oil in it.

    The most likely thing that would have popped, however, would be the transmission cooler lines that go into the radiator. (This is a common failure with the first gen CTS) If the fluid that has leaked out has a red tint, that's probably what happened. As far as I know, there's no way to check the trans fluid on any version of our cars without getting under the car.

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    Kingoftypos is online now Cadillac Owners Master
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    Your not the one that went over the Delaware Memorial Bridge this morning around 8am?

    I saw a first gen white CTS pouring smoking from it. I couldn't turn around cus I was on a toll road.

    But question, how did the engine react during this pour of "oil"?

    KOT

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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    Kot,

    You don't remember me? Aren't you the one that I gave my dual exhaust too? I have the light platinum CTS from MA. It's kind of tough to recall the reaction since it happened so fast. Not to mention I was on a slope downhill so I coasted into a parking spot. I do remember there was a hesitation when I hit the gas thats how I knew something was wrong besides the blue smoke. I feel like there wasn't much power or throttle response but that's probably due to the lack of oil pressure or something like that. Only assumptions at this point.

    Forgot to mention.....no that wasn't me you saw today. Hahaha

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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    Quote Originally Posted by A48WillyzGuy View Post
    BEFORE attempting to start the engine, check the oil level on the dipstick. Do not attempt to start it if there's no oil in it.
    Check the engine oil level and check the PS fluid level. If it sprayed out through the grille I don't imagine it's the engine oil, but it can't hurt to check that. More likely it's the PS cooler or trans cooler that popped a line.

    If you put a location into your profile then maybe someone that was nearby could offer to help look at it.
    Argent1 and Argent1 like this.
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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    What color is the power steering fluid? It was definitely a brownish color which looked like oil but it did seem lighter in color than oil especially since I am due for an oil change so it should have been pretty dark. I guess I could have jumped to conclusions thinking was was oil. It was a real lot of fluid so I just figured it was oil since there was so much of it leaking from underneath the car. If I had to pinpoint the location of the leak it would be more on the driver side than the passenger side and dripping down from the plastic undercarriage up front. I will have my uncle check the oil level tomorrow morning and look at the power steering fluid level as well. If both are where they should be that would mean transmission fluid then right?

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    A48WillyzGuy's Avatar
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    Power steering fluid could be red-ish or a light brown color. That is a good possibility that I didn't think about earlier.

    Yes, if the engine oil and power steering fluid check out ok, the only fluids left are coolant (which would be orange and have a noticeably sweet smell), brake fluid (which I doubt because you could stop) and trans fluid.

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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    Do what everyone says. Check the oil dipstick and power steering, but I'd bet money it was a transmission line off the radiator.

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  16. #15
    Kingoftypos is online now Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Oil exploded everywhere

    Quote Originally Posted by cvadala7813 View Post
    Kot,

    You don't remember me? Aren't you the one that I gave my dual exhaust too? I have the light platinum CTS from MA. It's kind of tough to recall the reaction since it happened so fast. Not to mention I was on a slope downhill so I coasted into a parking spot. I do remember there was a hesitation when I hit the gas thats how I knew something was wrong besides the blue smoke. I feel like there wasn't much power or throttle response but that's probably due to the lack of oil pressure or something like that. Only assumptions at this point.

    Forgot to mention.....no that wasn't me you saw today. Hahaha
    Honestly dude, when I replied to your thread. I had been awake for 23 hours. Out of those 23 hours I had worked 10 at Foxwoods (I work 4 ten hour days.) And I had traveled from Ledyard, CT to Laurel, DE. Basically the DE/MD boarder. That was a 5 to 6 hour drive. lol

    As OD said, I am willing to be it was the transmission line.

    Power steering fluid is basically the same thing as DOT-3 brake fluid. But a little different, it can be used in a quiche. But highly recommended to be flushed out with the proper stuff. My point is, their the same color. Almost clear, but depending on how much use it got, it maybe a bit darker.

    As for motor oil, well that depends on how many miles you driven since last oil change. If it was only a couple hundred, then it would be clear as if it were new. Over a grand, then it'll be darker and anything over 2 to 3K it'll be black.

    The color of transmission, I don't have a clue for our cars.

    KOT

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