Major Oil Leak - 1 quart in 400 miles! - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 08-11-2005, 12:21 AM   #1
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Default Major Oil Leak - 1 quart in 400 miles!

Background:
1992 SSEi
189,000 miles
Driven 200+ highway miles a day (I've got a long commute)

Due to the fact that I drive 200 miles @ 70MPH everyday, the oil leak has 'spread' oil all over the under side of the passenger side of the vehicle, all the way to the back coil spring, exhaust and muffler. Needless to say it'* left a hell of a mess under the car. I believe the leak started two days ago.

The short of this is:
Major oil leak in the area under the vehicle between oil filter and transaxle.

I can't locate the exact spot because (as mentioned above) the oil is all over everything. I'm assuming it'* coming out under pressure rather than statically, but it'* hard to be sure. I changed the oil two days ago (after I discovered the leak) thinking that the oil filter was to blame. 5 quarts of oil and a new filter later and this maintenance job was deemed complete. Checked the oil level this morning and it was already a quart low. I checked it because I saw a small oil puddle under the vehicle at the gas station after I filled up.

The car is now on stands. I've wiped up everything I can find in the immediate area of the leak. I'm waiting to see if a static leak problem shows itself... nothing so far. As I said, the nearest I can tell is it'* originating between the oil filter and the transaxle. The belts, harmonic balancer, etc. are clean. I may start the engine for a short time to see if that yields any clues... but haven't done that yet.

I'm at a loss one this one fella'*...
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Old 08-11-2005, 12:27 AM   #2
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what your going to need to do is get a big can of foamy engine cleaner, wait till the engine cools wash the crap out of the under side, especially around the possible point of origin for the leak and then inspect. It could be your front crank seal going, which could make sense, when those go, they tend to let alot of oil out.
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Old 08-11-2005, 05:54 AM   #3
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Where are u in the cities? I might be able to stop by since i'm on a mini vacation....

Otherwise clean it to hell (i just bought some foamy engine cleaner today actually) and just turn the car on in park and watch it?
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Old 08-11-2005, 07:08 AM   #4
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I would think it'* the just like stated above. Probably front crank/oil pan gasket. So far I've seen many wet 3800 oil pans.
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Old 08-11-2005, 09:51 AM   #5
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what about the Distributor Plug? that O-ring goes to hell all the time
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Old 08-11-2005, 09:58 AM   #6
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Distributor plug?? First I've heard of that...

What are the basics involved in the repair if it is the crank seal? Pull the engine, pull the pan, pull the crank, etc.? We're talking major down time right?
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Old 08-11-2005, 11:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GAMEOVER
what about the Distributor Plug? that O-ring goes to H*** all the time
I never heard whether or not we had these. I know the 3.1'* have them. And yes they leak like mad.
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Old 08-11-2005, 01:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillBoost37
Quote:
Originally Posted by GAMEOVER
what about the Distributor Plug? that O-ring goes to H*** all the time
I never heard whether or not we had these. I know the 3.1'* have them. And yes they leak like mad.
The 3800 uses the gyrator style oil pump... No 3800 uses the distributor plug...

All of the DIS 2.8'*, 3.1'*, SFI 3100 M, SFI 3100 J, SFI 3400 E and I'm thinking the new SFI 3500 engine all have that distributor plug... We have replaced a few of these...


Ok on to the Bonneville...

What year is the car, abd what model?

Depending on model the leak can be one of several things... Oil pressure sending unit, Sometimes the oil filter to timming cover seal can go bad.. If the engine has an external oil cooler that you need to check the oil cooler adapter and the cooler lines...

It is possible for the oil pan gasket to leak, But on the series 1 engines the leak shuld be very minor... Good luck

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Old 08-11-2005, 01:23 PM   #9
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Get a can of brake cleaner to clean it with. That stuff cleans fast. Then turn your engine on and watch for leaks and keep spraying brake cleaner & inspecting. I found a oil pan gasket and valve cover leak like that.
Maybe it'* your rear valve cover leaking down in between the tranny and pan?
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Old 08-12-2005, 12:15 AM   #10
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I've seen the oil filter adapter gasket leak like that....like jr's3800 said.

Just a thought, I've never tried this, but maybe squirt a hole bottle of red food coloring into the engine oil and look for the trail of "blood"? Just a thought?
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