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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My girlfriend has bought a Corsa 1.4 SXi on a 55 reg. When we bought it I checked the oil filler cap it was clean, within two months it is thick with emulsified oil, in fact the whole plastic cam cover is and the breathers are full.
Previously she had an M reg 1.4 8V MPi Corsa which had the same problem but was much easier to clean out. This only happened in cold weather and I think was due to the cam cover being plastic and not evaporating off the condensation during the short journeys made to work.

I dont think its head gasket related as the water header tank is clean and not going down.

Has anyone else got this problem and have you found a fix?
 

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hi , yes i have to say, you're right about the short journeys, but i wud say sometimes a faulty thermostat or coolant sensor stops the car from heating up properly and the condensation will build up in the oil and emulsify which isnt to good for the oil pump i should imagine., What temperature is being displayed after the car has been drove for 30 minutes? Does it heat up or stay rather cold?

Do the easiest first and clear the PCV hoses (Engine breather tubes) and see if this helps. If not, then check temperature and consider getting the thermostat changed, and the coolant sensor either replaced of checked.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The car warms up quickly, less than 5 minutes and sits solidly at 90oC.
I will clean the top of the engine out but its kind of pointless if there is no way to stop it building up again while its still cold, honestly its so full you can see where the cam lobes have been smearing it out of the way.

It was clean as a whistle 2 months ago. I've got an OBDII scanner so I will monitor the coolant temp. with that but as I said this happened on the previous car.
 

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Does this car only get used for short journeys? If so then just take it out for a long run if you can 80 miles approx and keep the revs up (not use 5th gear on motorways etc), after that, let your car idle and heat up to the point where the radiator fan kicks in to assist in cooling, let it do this a few times, just to get the engine really hot and hopefully it should get rid of this build up for you! I can happen on all cars except for diesels i think.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for your help although I would prefer a solution which didnt require wasting £10 in fuel and needless wear and tear on the car plus to keep the breathers clean I dont know how often this would be necessary as I havent monitored it closely yet.

Does no one else have this problem, there must be loads of Corsa's out there with plastic cam covers and are used for short runs?

Is there an additive or Fully Synthetic oil which prevents/slows this kind of emulsifying?
 

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This is a problem that effects cars doing short runs..... the solution is to give the car a decent run..... as suggested, a lengthy high speed run will probably do less harm to the engine than low speed short journeys that cause the build up. A family member of ours had a Ford Ka and that did short journeys and suffered exactly the same problem as yours.

To be honest there are probably loads of other Corsa's that suffer the same problem, but the average Corsa owner rarely looks under the bonnet too see this.

The oils used in modern Corsas are advanced as you are probably going to get, and theres no additive that i know of to cure this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you for your replies. At least I'm not alone although why car designers persist with plastic cam covers is a mystery to me, I guess it might be cost but most cars use alloy covers I doubt its a significant amount.

Not sure how I'm going to get the missus to drive pointlessly around for many miles unless I suggest going to Lakeside shopping, otherwise she hates driving and avoids it whenever possible.

Thanks all.
 

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Amazing how much plastic they use these days, even the inlet manifolds are plastic... got to be down to cost i guess.....

The Ka i mentioned that suffered from it literally was caked in mayonaise, we had to scrape it out.... and that was a 15k mile car with FSH.
 

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Same on 1.6 8v astra

Hi,

always had this problem over the winter on our Astra, its a 1.6 8v estate, 1999. It only gets used for short journeys really (4 miles to work, 15 for dogwalk), so emulsified oil is normal.
I've just changed the oil (7.5k since last time, a fair few long runs up to 3k ago), nice and dark, needed doing.

Only solution is to take the car for a good run to get it all up to temperature. I'd change the oil every 5k or so too if you don't go far.


muttley
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I think I've got to the bottom of the problem, after some interrogation it came out that she had been using the car to drive to her parents house for lunch, a journey of less than half a mile each way.
Hopefully I have convinced her this is not necessary on a regular basis and the mayo in the cam cover will go away.

Cheers for all your input.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I finally got round to clearing the mayonaise out from the inside of the cam cover and tried to clean out the breathers.
The problem I came across is there's a small breather pipe which is chock full of mayo, it goes from the cam cover down to behind the throttle body and seems to sit in a recess between the throttle bottle and the inlet manifold.

I can't see how this pipe comes off and was wondering if anyone can give me some advice before I potentially knacker it trying to get it off?

Its a Z14XEP engine by the way.
 
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