Exmark Kohler Engine Oil Leaking Blown Head Gasket (Fixed)

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Exmark Kohler Engine Oil Leaking Blown Head Gasket (Fixed)

If you own a lawn mower, there’s a good chance you might be familiar with the Exmark Kohler engine, renowned for its performance and durability. But like any other mechanical device, it can also run into issues, two of which we will delve into today: oil leaks and blown head gaskets.

For years, my experience as a seasoned lawn care professional has helped me tackle a broad spectrum of engine-related issues with practical solutions. This includes everything from the smallest oil leaks to the more complex problems like blown head gaskets in Exmark Kohler engines. In today’s post, I’ll share this expertise with you to help you identify, prevent, and fix these common problems in your equipment.

The primary objective of this post isn’t to scare you with potential problems but to empower you with the knowledge to spot issues early, tackle them head-on, and save valuable time and money in the process.

Stay with me, and by the end of this post, you will have a comprehensive understanding of oil leaks and blown head gaskets in Exmark Kohler engines. Together, we will decode the signs and symptoms of these issues and delve into some best practices for prevention and repair.

The Importance of Regular Maintenance of Exmark Kohler Engines

As an experienced lawn care expert, I can’t stress enough the importance of regular maintenance for your Exmark Kohler engines. One of the key aspects of this maintenance involves managing the engine oil correctly.

Engine oil plays a critical role in the efficient functioning of your engine. It lubricates the moving parts, reduces friction, helps in cooling the engine, and removes small particles that can cause damage.

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Neglecting oil leaks, which might seem insignificant at first, can gradually lead to serious issues. One of them is a blown head gasket – a more severe problem that can cause substantial damage to your engine and put a big dent in your pocket for repair costs.

Detecting and addressing these issues early can save you from potential headaches down the line. For example, spotting and fixing an oil leak early can prevent it from escalating into a blown head gasket. Early detection and swift action can help prolong the life of your engine, improve its performance, and ultimately save you from expensive repairs or replacements.

Signs and Symptoms of Oil Leaks in Exmark Kohler Engines

Signs and Symptoms of Oil Leaks in Exmark Kohler Engines
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Oil leaks in engines may not always be readily apparent. Here are some common signs that might suggest you’re dealing with an oil leak in your Exmark Kohler engine:

1. Oil Stains or Puddles Underneath Your Engine

One of the most obvious signs of an oil leak is the presence of oil stains or small puddles of oil underneath your engine. If you notice this, it’s important to inspect your engine for a potential leak.

2. Low Oil Levels

Check your engine oil level regularly. If you find the oil levels are decreasing faster than usual, this could be due to a leak. Always ensure your engine oil level is within the recommended range to avoid damaging the engine.

3. The smell of Burning Oil

An oil leak can often result in a distinct smell of burning oil, especially when the engine is running. This is because the leaking oil may come into contact with hot parts of the engine.

4. Smoke from the Exhaust

While a certain amount of exhaust smoke is normal, excessive smoke – particularly if it’s blue or gray – can indicate that oil is leaking into the combustion chamber.

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5. Engine Overheating

Oil plays a crucial role in cooling your engine. If the engine oil is leaking, your engine may overheat due to increased friction and heat.

Please remember, if you notice any of these signs, it’s important to address them promptly. An ignored oil leak can escalate into more serious problems, including a blown head gasket.

The Relationship Between Oil Leaks and Blown Head Gaskets

Understanding the relationship between oil leaks and blown head gaskets is crucial to maintaining your Exmark Kohler engine’s health. To do that, let’s first discuss what a blown head gasket is.

A head gasket is a crucial component that seals the engine’s cylinders to ensure maximum compression and prevent leakage of coolant or engine oil into the cylinders. When the head gasket ‘blows’ or fails, it can cause a variety of problems, from engine overheating to significant loss of engine power.

So how does an oil leak relate to a blown head gasket? Here’s the connection:

The main function of engine oil is to lubricate the moving parts of the engine, reducing friction and heat. When the engine oil is leaking, it reduces the amount of oil available to perform this crucial job. This can result in increased engine temperatures and cause the head gasket to overheat. Over time, this increased heat can cause the head gasket to fail or ‘blow.’

Moreover, if the leaking oil finds its way into the combustion chamber, it can degrade the performance of the head gasket and even cause it to fail prematurely.

Simply put, an oil leak in your Exmark Kohler engine, if not addressed promptly, can lead to a blown head gasket. This underlines the importance of early detection and repair of oil leaks to prevent more significant engine damage.

How to Prevent Oil Leaks and Blown Head Gaskets in Exmark Kohler Engines

Throughout my career spanning over 13 years in lawn care, I’ve always emphasized prevention as the first line of defense. Here are some strategies to prevent oil leaks and, in turn, blown head gaskets in your Exmark Kohler engines:

1. Regular Maintenance and Check-ups

A routine maintenance schedule is essential. Regularly inspect your engine for signs of wear and tear. Pay attention to oil levels and check for any signs of leakage.

2. Proper Oil Management

Use the right type of oil and maintain the correct oil level. Overfilling can cause oil leaks while underfilling can lead to inadequate lubrication and increased engine wear. Also, make sure to change the oil at the recommended intervals.

3. Gasket Care

Replace the head gasket at suggested intervals or the first signs of failure. While a blown head gasket is a serious issue, a preventative replacement can save you from major engine damage and costly repairs.

4. Engine Cooling System Maintenance

Keeping the engine cooling system in good working order is critical. A malfunctioning cooling system can lead to overheating, which can cause a head gasket to blow.

By following these preventative steps, you can significantly decrease the likelihood of facing oil leaks and blown head gaskets. However, despite all precautions, issues may arise.

How to Fix a Leaking Oil Problem and a Blown Head Gasket in Exmark Kohler Engines

Despite your best efforts to maintain your engine, problems can still occur. Here’s a step-by-step guide to fixing an oil leak and replacing a blown head gasket in your Exmark Kohler engine:

1. Fixing an Oil Leak

Below are the step-by-step process for fixing an oil leak.

1. Identify the Source

The first step is to identify the source of the leak. Look for the areas where oil appears to be seeping out.

2. Check the Oil Filter

Make sure the oil filter is properly fitted, and the seal isn’t damaged. If needed, replace the oil filter.

3. Inspect the Oil Plug

The oil plug should be securely tightened. If the leak is coming from the oil plug, it might need to be replaced.

4. Replace Gaskets and Seals

If the gaskets or seals are damaged, they may be causing the leak. In this case, you’ll need to replace them.

2. Replacing a Blown Head Gasket

To replace a blown head gasket successfully, here are the necessary measures to take.

1. Diagnosis

Confirm that the head gasket is blown. This typically requires a compression test or a leak-down test. It’s a task that might require a professional mechanic if you’re not familiar with the process.

2. Preparation

Disconnect the battery, drain the engine coolant and oil, and remove all parts that prevent access to the head gasket.

3. Removal

Remove the old, blown head gasket. Be sure to clean the area thoroughly to ensure a proper seal with the new gasket.

4. Replacement

Install the new head gasket according to the manufacturer’s specifications. Reassemble all parts removed during the preparation phase.

5. Check

After replacing the head gasket, reconnect the battery, refill the oil and coolant, and then start the engine to check for leaks or issues.

These are rather simplified steps and might require technical know-how and specific tools. If you’re unsure about any step in the process, seeking professional help is always the best course of action.

Dealing with these issues might be challenging, but with the right approach, you can manage them effectively and keep your Exmark Kohler engine running smoothly.


In the world of lawn care, preventing engine problems is crucial. Over my 13-year career, I’ve seen how seemingly small issues like oil leaks can escalate into major problems like a blown head gasket, especially in Exmark Kohler engines.

However, with the right knowledge and a bit of diligence, these problems can be managed and often prevented.

Regular maintenance, early detection of oil leaks, and understanding the role these play in the health of your head gasket are key. And if problems do occur, don’t panic. There are steps you can take to fix these issues or, when in doubt, seeking professional help is always a sound decision.

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