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Old 11-12-2007, 13:55   #1 (permalink)
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Oil Pan Gasket change

I noticed some burning smell from car and when crawled under realized that fair amount of oil is on oil pan (pan with drain plug!) and other nearby parts/frame. At the pan location on the serpentine belt side of engine (left side of engine when facing car). I noticed that on this belt side of engine the gasket was literally pushed out (almost fully!). I had gasket changed probably 4-5 years ago and I don't want to drop the $450 or so again for ford to change it again (3.0L Sable -1998).

Question is, how difficult is this effort if I put the front up on jack stands in the garage. Quick peek looked like I would have to drop exhaust and remove starter at least. Anyone tackle this with success? How much effort required? Thanks!
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Old 11-12-2007, 14:44   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Oil Pan Gasket change

I had this problem earlier last year and it set me back nearly $600 with taxes. They had to move a few pieces under the front end to change the oil pan gasket. I was impressed on how wide it was, but I've never had this problem on any of my other vehicles. Luckily it's been the most major problem with the car. I can't say I'd do this myself since I not only lack some of the proper tools to lift the car, my driveway isn't level what so ever. Mine also leaked on the left side facing the car.

I watched the shop work on my car and it took two guys, two hours and a few minutes to get the job done. 4hours labour plus $100 for the gasket and it adds up fast. I suppose it comes down to if you know you can do it or not. If I have to think about doing a repair I stop and send it into the shop. I like to do as much work on my cars as I can, but theres a line that I draw on some things.
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Old 02-29-2008, 12:03   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Oil Pan Gasket change

Any luck so far?
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Old 02-29-2008, 14:04   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Oil Pan Gasket change

I just replaced my oil pan gasket last weekend(98-Vulcan). Put the car up on ramps. Drain the oil. Unblot starter( 2 bolts) and place out of the way. Remove torque converter access plate(1- 8mm bolt) Hardest part is the y-pipe. The front manifold to y-pipe was easy. Could not get the rear off. I rounded off the nuts on the studs and they also wouldn't budge even after soaking them with penetrating oil and also heating them up. My only option at that point was to cut the y-pipe after the front cat. Cut the pipe with a sawzall and dropped the cat/front pipe. Pulled the pan bolts(8mm). Dropped the pan, cleaned the mating surfaces with brake clean. Applied silicone to the rear of the pan where the rear main meets the oil pan and also a little where the front cover meets the block. Placed new gasket on pan and bolted the pan to the block. Installed front cat-pipe. Install converter access plate and starter. Refill with oil. When I started mine it made a horrible knocking sound. After reving it up a couple of times is stopped. What I think happened was a baffle plate in the oil pan got bent upwards when i revoved the pan and when I started it the crankshaft was hitting it. Eventually the rotating crankshaft pushed the baffle plate back down. Didn't want to have to pull the pan again). No noises since. Took the car to a muffler shop and had them weld the pipe up. Total cost of job= $50. $20 oil pan gasket, $20 to weld pipe, $3 for one qt.oil(didn't change oil, was able to capture oil in a clean container without contaminating it), and $5 for a tube of copper color rtv silicone. My advice to anyone attempting this job would be to try to remove the rear manifold-y-pipe nuts first. Try from the top using a box ent wrench. Try from underneath using a socket/extensions/universal. Just dont overdo it and snap off the stud, because then your really up %$#@*! creek. I probably could have saved a couple of hours on the job if I had just cut the pipe to start with. Whole job took me maybe 8 hours.
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Old 02-29-2008, 16:09   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Oil Pan Gasket change

Man, that was not that easy. What I worry the most are not be able to get bolts off or strip threads. I had pretty bad experiences on threads on trany and engine. I am still not sure if i really want to do it. My leak is not too bad. At least I do not see it on floor. It has been this way for at least a year and half. I guess as long as I check oil level regularly to maintain the level, i may be ok for a while.
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Old 02-29-2008, 16:23   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Oil Pan Gasket change

Yea mine would leave a half dollar size spot on my driveway. It was leaking from the rear of the oil pan. I found that if I parked it going down in my driveway it really wouldnt leak. The job wasn't really that bad. It would be my suggestion that if you cant somewhat easily remove those rear manifold nuts, to cut the exhaust pipe behind the cat. I figured I saved at least $200-$300 over having it replaced at a shop and that is enough incentive for me to do it myself.
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Old 05-21-2008, 14:39   #7 (permalink)
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confused Re: Oil Pan Gasket change

I just got my car back from a mechanic that wanted to take me to the cleaners on my 1999 tauras for $1,695. The main scare was that my oil pan gasket is "bulging" and could blow at any minute, causing oil to gush out and seizing the engine! I am not a mechanic but have worked on my cars in the past and of course had professional work done and I have never been told this!!!! Is there any truth to what this quack said? By the way, my gasket is NOT leaking...
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