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Car Smells Like Burning Oil After Oil Change – ( Causes And Fixes )

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Car Smells Like Burning Oil After Oil Change

Since you are getting a burning oil smell from the car after the oil change, the problem lies in the service. Sometimes the smell could come from a nearby oil factory too. But if you have confirmed that it’s coming from your car, it’s time to take steps toward solutions.

So why does a car smells like burning oil after an oil change? The common causes could be loose oil filters, oil spillage, overfilling of the oil, loose drain plug, and leaky oil line. The solutions may lead you to unload and re-fill oil, change the leaky hose or tighten the drain plug and oil filter.

However, I will cover the causes of the burning smell from a car after the oil change and the solutions to it in detail in this further article. 

How To Fix Car’s Burning Oil Smell Problem?

When you get a burning oil smell from the car after the oil change, sometimes the source of this problem could be bad servicing by unskilled or non-professional mechanics. 

Car Smells Like Burning Oil

The are multiple reasons that cause the burning smell. You need to take immediate steps to fix the solution. However, I will discuss the causes and fixes in the below table. Please take a look at it –

Loosed and Over-tightened oil filterRe-tighten the loosed oil filter and replace the blown head gasket if the filter is over-tightened
Oil spillageWipe the spills with a dry cloth
Overfilling the oilReduce the over-filled portion and re-fill it to a limited measure
Loosed drain plugTighten the drain plug
Leaky oil hoseReplace the oil hose
How To Fix Car’s Burning Oil Smell Problem

The reasons I stated above could be the causes for the burning oil smell. So you need to find out the causes by yourself or take your car to a professional mechanic to diagnose the problem and fix the solution at the earliest.

Have a look at this video of a mechanic fixing oil leak problem –

Why does My Car has Burning Oil Smell?

The smell of burning after an oil change can occur for multiple reasons. Knowing the reasons for diagnosing and fixing the problem is essential.

Why does My Car has Burning Oil Smell

Look at the diverse factors that could be the causes behind the car smelling burning oil after an oil change –

Loosed oil filter 

Loosed oil filter can be a reason behind the burning smell. When the mechanic installed the oil filter during the oil change process, he may have incorrectly installed it and did not tighten it. 

As a result, the oil starts spilling. Then the oil starts burning because of the engine’s hot temperature, and you get the burning oil smell.

Loosed oil filter 


If the oil filter is loosed, you have to re-tighten the oil filter. In this case, visit a good mechanic who can re-tighten the oil filter without any mistake.

Over-tightened oil filter

Overtightened oil filter can also be a leading reason for oil leaking. The over-tightened oil filter blows the head gasket, which causes the oil to leak.

Over-tightened oil filter


When the oil filter is over-tightened, the head gasket is blown. The only solution to this problem is to replace the head gasket. A professional mechanic can help you in this case.

Oil spillage

Sometimes, while changing the oil, the mechanic can spill oil droplets in the internal system of your vehicle. As the engine heats the oil, you keep getting the burning oil smell.

Car Oil spillage


To fix this problem, you need to take a dry cloth and wipe the droplets with the cloth. In this case, a mechanic won’t be required as this is a simple job. You can do this single handedly.

Over-filled oil filter

If the mechanic overfilled the oil filter, it could cause the oil to start dripping. The oil begins burning inside, which causes you to have the smell.

Over-filled oil filter


If the car’s oil filter is overfilled, you need to reduce the over-filled portion and re-fill it to a limited measure. This time make sure that the oil is not filling. For this, you can take the car to a professional mechanic.

Loosed drain plug

When the drain plug of oil is loosed, it will cause the oil to start leaking and burning due to the heat of other parts of the car. The mechanic should have installed the drain plug tightely, to prevent this issue.

Loosed drain plug


The loosed drain plug can lead to an oil leak. To solve this situation, you have to tighten the drain plug. To do this work, take your car to a repair shop.

Oil hose leak

When the hoses where oil flows through are leaked, it can cause the oil to drip through those spots. When the oil drips, it starts burning the oil, and you get that burning smell.

Oil hose leak


When the oil hose is leaked, you need to replace the oil hose because the leak spots may keep dripping oil if you don’t change it.

How To Get Rid Of The Burning Oil Smell?

How To Get Rid Of The Burning Oil Smell

Even if you have taken steps toward the solution and stopped the leaking oil, the spillage oil scent could still come from the metallic components of car. In this case, how can you get rid of this smell? Here’s how you can do it –

  • You can put charcoals in a bag inside your car. Charcoals can absorb the scents and take away the smell
  • A sprinkle of baking soda on the smelling area can help the smell to go away. Besides this, you can put baking soda in a box with a few holes so that the smell can go away
  • Leave vinegar in a bowl inside your car for a night so that it can soak up all the smell

When you take these steps, the burning oil smell can go away sooner than it goes away naturally.

Why does My Car has Burning Oil Smell

Should I Keep Driving After Burning Oil Smell

Should I Keep Driving After Burning Oil Smell

It depends on some factors whether you should keep driving or not after the burning oil smell. You could go on driving if it is a matter of oil spillage. 

The small amount spillage won’t harm the vehicle as much as a blown head gasket will do. When the oil filter is overtightened, it can blow the head gasket, which will eventually cause the oil to leak.

The blown gasket will worsen the engine if you continue driving the car. That’s why you should immediately stop the car and take the car to a mechanic if the cause is threatening.

Should I Keep Driving After Burning Oil Smell
If you’re dealing with a burning oil smell in your car after an oil change, you may also be interested in our articles on why your car smells like gas when you start it but the smell goes away or why your car smells like burning oil. Our article on why your car smells like gas when you start it but the smell goes away discusses the common causes of this odor, such as a flooded engine, a clogged air filter, or a faulty fuel pressure regulator. Meanwhile, our article on why your car smells like burning oil explains the possible causes of this smell, such as an oil leak, a damaged engine or transmission, or a faulty PCV valve. If you’re experiencing any of these smells in your car, our articles can help you diagnose and fix the problem.


The common questions regarding the burning oil smell after an oil change are answered below. Have a look at it –

Q. Can I Consider Burning Oil Smell Natural after Oil Change?

No. The burning oil smell is not natural. So you should not take it easily. The burning smell of oil indicates that there is something wrong internally and that, the oil has burnt in heat because of a leak.

Q. Can Too Much Oil Create A Burning Smell?

When the oil is overfilled in the oil filter, it leads the oil to leak in when unable to hold all the oil in the oil filter. So the oil leaks in the system. The leaked oil goes to every corner of the internal parts, which leads it to burning.

Q. When Will The Burning Oil Smell Disappear?

If the cause of the burning smell is oil spillage, then the smell will vanish in few days naturally.


To put it concisely, the car has burning oil smell problem due to the issues mentioned above. Sometimes, these problems occur due to the mechanics’ improper installment of components. As a result, the oil leaks and gets burnt, which creates a burning smell. 

To avoid oil leaking issues, you must make sure that you are taking the car for an oil change to a professional and skilled mechanic. Besides, the mechanism should be concentrated during oil change and the auto-mechanic should do the process correctly. 

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