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Old 01-20-2006, 11:05 PM   #1
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Default Update on 03 SSEi Coolant and Oil Leak

Well, just got back from the dealership. I was hoping they would find a coolant leak since I always smell it, but instead they (and myself) found the oil pan was leaking. So at 27K miles, the car needed the oil pan gasket redone... Can't believe such a young vehicle with oil pan problems.

They pressurized the system and looked all over. No signs of a coolant leak. I see some fluid on the side of the block near #6 cylinder, but you can't get to it to see what it is. It'* not even enough to make it down to the oil pan area, but something is leaking coolant.

In summary, keep an eye on your oil pan gasket if you see oil down there. I need to get out there and try to remove the scraps/scratches from those wonderful/caring mechanics that worked on it.

On a lighter note. Talked to some folks at that dealership. They had a new Grand Prix GXP with the 5.3. They said it was extremely quick. I looked at the window sticker. Fully loaded with HUD and etc for $30K

Pat
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Old 01-21-2006, 09:29 AM   #2
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Pat, thank you for the update. Hope that fluid seepage you see near cylinder #6 isn't anything serious. Was that pointed out to the mechanics? Do you have a bright light with inspection mirror to get a closer look? Keep us posted.
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Old 01-21-2006, 11:26 AM   #3
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Yeah, I crawled up under there and see it. Unfortunately, that'* where the tranny is.. Just inches from the block. I couldn't slip my hand up there to touch it. I may see if I can come down from the top somehow. I haven't had much time because my '94 truck is getting a new Intake (I can't get the leaking under control), and our '99 'burban is on my list for new intake gaskets..

Dealer acted like they didn't think it was anything. Wish I didn't live in a smaller town, I don't think we have the brightest of minds here. But for now, I am ok since the warranty doesn't run out till the end of the year. Only thing I could think was that it'* a small head gasket leak and yes, that'* major... For some reason, this (my) 3800 hasn't been a great engine. Other than great gas mileage..
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Old 01-21-2006, 12:49 PM   #4
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More likely it'* the LIM/block seal in the back corner where that seal is pinched between the head, top edge of the block, and LIM. The 'tip' of the wedge erodes and leaks oil. It'* a non-pressure oil leak that comes from lifter splash. Nothing cirtical, but keep an eye on it over time. You'll never lose great volumes of oil from it. The reason you see it back behind #6 is because the wind blows it back there while driving.

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In the pic above, you see the two pushrods for #6? Just to the right of it you'll see where
the top edge of the block has a black seal laying on it (front to rear) and spans from front
to rear head. You'll see if you look carefully that I've got a little dab of black sealant gobbed
on at the corner. The prongs of the orange TPS connector are pointing right at it.

It may be possible to get your hand in there on a cold engine, above the crossover, and
behind the TB to feel it.

Or a valve cover leak if you don't feel it in there.
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