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Oil Leak (passenger side engine '96 GP 3.1L)


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Just wondering if you guys have any ideas of where an oil leak on the passenger side of the engine might come from.

Looking underneath, there is oil dripping from the motor mount on that side.  Looking up, the only oil I can see is in the passenger rear corner of the engine block where it meets the timing cover.  There's no oil on the back of the block (or toward the drivers side) and no oil on the oil pan itself.  Oil is limited to the very corner of the block, around / underneath where the alternator mounts, and seems to drip onto the motor mount.  I can't see where it might be leaking from, the area is wet and obviously oil has been running down it, but I can't actually see a leak even with the engine running.  Area it is leaking from is above/behind the crankshaft seal, I'm certain it's not coming from there.

The only place it drips under the car is that metal pan looking thing that the motor mount sits on top of, but the fluid is evidently coming from above.  The area around where the passenger axle meets the transmission is wet from the oil blowing backwards.  I'm pretty stumped.  This engine / my garage floor was completely dry until a couple days ago, so this seems to have happened relatively suddenly.

Before I start taking thing apart to get a better view, anyone have any ideas or are there any common culprits for leaks in this area? TIA.

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Thanks for your reply.  Real difficult to see in that area without removing the power steering pump.  The little I can see doesn't appear to be wet. I replaced the heads on this engine about 10k ago, and I sealed the LIM myself, but I suppose it's not outside the realm of possibility that it might be leaking.

Is there anything on the timing cover that could leak, or is that not likely?  I see the oil most where the timing cover meets the engine block in that upper passenger side corner.

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Clean up around the lower intake and you should be able to tell if it's leaking. If you use degreaser and have to flush with water afterward, cover up any electrical components and use only very low pressure spray from your garden hose to eliminate the possibility of causing more problems. Cheap paint brushes from a dollar/hobby store will help you clean nooks and crannies without having to remove components. Use them to agitate the degreaser. I usually buy the generic use sets that are about a foot long, they reach into most places on an engine for cleaning.

 

 

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May not be your case since you see something on the engine itself, but I've had several of these cars drip brown oily liquid that looks and feels a lot like motor oil from the motor mount pad and it turned out to be a power steering leak.  Sometimes a little leak from the pump bearing that drips off the pulley, and sometimes the hoses become porous and sweat a lot which drips down into there.

 

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