If you are not a petrol head, chances are anything that is off kilter with your vehicle will prompt you to take your car to the auto shop. Although this meticulousness is applauded, it can be quite inconvenient, especially if you are a first-time motorist. Instead, it is better to know what red flags should be cause for alarm and to do this you should be able to troubleshoot the different symptoms that your car will exhibit from time to time. A prevalent issue that motorists will encounter with their vehicle is the odour of burning. So do burning smells constitute an emergency visit to the mechanic?
A burning odour due to an oil leak
A standard cause of burning smells coming from your vehicle is if you have sprung an oil leak. Oil is critical for the internal components of your car as this fluid prevents the risk of friction between car components. And since oil is used extensively under the bonnet, it is unsurprising that a leak can spring up anywhere. When these leaks occur, they end up dripping onto the hot surfaces of the exhaust system, which in turn burns off the oil immediately. In some cases, the burning odours may go undetected for a while at the interior but will be quite pungent once you get out of your vehicle. If you are suspicious of an oil leak, it is best to seek the services of your local mechanic as this leak could be stemming from a loosened filter, a broken gasket or compromised seals.
A burning odour due to stale oil
A mistake made by many motorists is not changing their engine oil on a scheduled basis. This oversight could be due to absentmindedness whereas other drivers assume they can drive around with old oil until it entirely runs out. The moment you start to smell burning odours due to the quality of your oil, it is critical to have it changed immediately by your mechanic. Engine oil is bound to degrade over time due to the type of extreme conditions that it works under. From high heat to exposure to contaminants, the engine oil will slowly become darker and more viscous with time. As the engine oil degrades, it loses its ability to lubricate your engine efficiently. Subsequently, you put your vehicle at risk of overheating, which leads to an assortment of other mechanical problems. It is vital to inspect the condition of your engine oil routinely and have it changed as needed.