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Greg A
Greg A, Master Troubleshooter
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 8855
Experience:  Working with Electronics & Cars for 25+ Years
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2002 impala: the engine is getting oil in the antifreeze..engines..psi

Customer Question

hello I have a 2002 impala and the engine is getting oil in the antifreeze, but there is no signs of antifreeze in the oil at all. I am not that firmiliar with these newer engines and dont understand where it is mixing at becuase it would have to be a point where the oil psi is always greater than the antifreeze psi. Hopefully you can help me out on this. thanks
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Chevy
Expert:  Greg A replied 9 years ago.

HiCustomer Thank you for asking your question on Just Answer.

Have you verified that what you have is actually oil from the engine?

What it could be is that there is transmission fluid in there. This is possible because the transmission fluid runs through an internal tank in the radiator, and that tank could be leaking into the radiator.

I would check the transmission fluid, as soon as possible, to make sure that there is no coolant in the transmission. That would be bad news for the transmission.

Otherwise, these engines are known for having intake manifold gaskets that leak, both internally and externally. But that usually gets antifreeze in the oil, as you mentioned, not the other way around.

Please let me know what you find.

Take Care, Greg A.

Greg A and 6 other Chevy Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Yes I understand about the trans cooler, but that doesnt seem to be the problem in this case. Can you tell me is there an oil galley that runs through the lower intake that could cuase this situation. It is also using more engine oil than it ever has before.
Expert:  Greg A replied 9 years ago.

Hi again.

There is no oil going through the lower intake manifold, but when the gaskets go, the oil or coolant can leak across the edges. Usually, since the coolant is at higher pressure than the oil, the coolant gets into the engine.


But check this out, which I found while researching this. I found this in the "Cooling System Description" section for the engine.

Engine Oil Cooler
The engine oil cooler is a heat exchanger. It is located inside the left side end tank of the radiator. The engine oil temperature is controlled by the temperature of the engine coolant that surrounds the oil cooler in the radiator.

The engine oil pump, pumps the oil through the engine oil cooler line to the oil cooler. The oil then flows through the cooler where the engine coolant absorbs heat from the oil. The oil is then pumped through the oil cooler return line, to the oil filter, to the engine block oil system.

So that is another suspect.

Please let me know what you find.

Take Care, Greg A.

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
I will check this out about the oil cooler. Sounds like a very good possibilty. Since at that point the oil psi would be greater than the coolant psi. Was not aware that these cars even had an oil cooler. Thanks and who do I get back in touch with you to let you know what the problem ended up being?
Expert:  Greg A replied 9 years ago.
Hi again.

Just bookmark this page and come back to it at any time. I would be interested to find out the final result.

Take Care, Greg A.