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  #1  
Old August 5th, 2006, 05:40 PM
MonLand
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leak at front engine mail seal (due to vibration?) => two questions?

Hi,

While troubleshooting a engine oil leak, we actually discovered that the leak was coming from the front main seal of the engine. At idle, no leak. If you start revving the engine a little, oil will start dripping from the front seal.
Now, a buddy of mine owns a 1994 D90 and told me that he felt a "different" engine vibration on my 1995 D90.

Now.... I actually have two questions:
- Can I just replace the front seal with the engine in-situ? If you've done it, how did you do it, just replacing it from the front? or do you have to start dropping the oil pan and all?

- I look throught the workshop manual, and there does not seem to be any bearing other than the main bearings on the camshaft..... That leads to the other question: where could the vibration coming from? The idea (right now) is that the vibration causes the camshaft to move and creates the leak around the seal. Not sure if this is possible or not. What do you guys thing?

Thanks,
MonLand
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  #2  
Old August 5th, 2006, 06:33 PM
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huh!

My friend just balanced his 4.6 & was amazed @ how bad it was as stock.
what kina vib?
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  #3  
Old August 5th, 2006, 10:15 PM
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So where exactly is the oil leaking from? Is it leaking from the front cover? the front cover seal can be relplaced with the engine installed, but you will need to remove the radiator, alt, PS pump AC and pullies.

As far as it vibrating, have you checked the engine mounts?
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  #4  
Old August 5th, 2006, 11:51 PM
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When I did mine I think you really only need to remove the belts and the harmonic balancer. I didn't even need a puller to get my balancer off the crank, though I never did figure out how to separate the pully from the balancer.... didn't need to either. You definitely don't need to pull the water pump, and I don't think you need to remove the alternator or power steering pump either except to make more room. You can possibly get away with just removing the fan and shroud, though removing the radiator will give more room to work on it.

-Hans
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  #5  
Old August 7th, 2006, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bowtracer
huh!

My friend just balanced his 4.6 & was amazed @ how bad it was as stock.
what kina vib?
Hum.... I did not even know that you could balance an engine! :-( Is that something that can be done with basic tools or do you have to take the truck to a shop?

Kind of vib? Well.... Hard to say.... I am too used to it, I'll follow up with my buddy and see how he describes it.

Follow-up Post:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hans
When I did mine I think you really only need to remove the belts and the harmonic balancer. I didn't even need a puller to get my balancer off the crank, though I never did figure out how to separate the pully from the balancer.... didn't need to either. You definitely don't need to pull the water pump, and I don't think you need to remove the alternator or power steering pump either except to make more room. You can possibly get away with just removing the fan and shroud, though removing the radiator will give more room to work on it.

-Hans
That's great info to me! I'll order one seal to try to do it as soon as possible.

Follow-up Post:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Hippert
So where exactly is the oil leaking from? Is it leaking from the front cover? the front cover seal can be relplaced with the engine installed, but you will need to remove the radiator, alt, PS pump AC and pullies.

As far as it vibrating, have you checked the engine mounts?
Yes, the oil is dripping out of the camshaft-hole when the main pulley can "connected" to the engine. I assume (did not check the workshop manual) that the big metal thing behind the pulleys is the harmonic balancer. According to the workshop manual, there is only one (small!) seal there. I just want to make sure that I understand what damaged it (if anything) so that I don't have to do it again soon _and_ I don't damage anything else.

I can definitely see that all the belts and the harmonic balancer/pulleys need to be removed. Removing the main radiator can probably help to if I need to use an impact wrench, but I am not sure about the PS pump/alternator/AC compressor, those seem out of the way. I could see that the AC radiator will not help where it is.... I know I probably need to top up the gas in my AC, but I don't really use/need it! :-)

Thanks a lot!
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  #6  
Old August 7th, 2006, 10:17 AM
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9/10 a front engine seal leak is a clogged engine breather or blocked/clogged emissions hoses. Especially because the leak is when you rev.

Try cleaning them and the leak may fix itself.
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  #7  
Old August 7th, 2006, 10:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
9/10 a front engine seal leak is a clogged engine breather or blocked/clogged emissions hoses. Especially because the leak is when you rev.

Try cleaning them and the leak may fix itself.
Hum.... I had never thought of that! That's something I definitely can do tonight! :-) Any specific hose that is known for getting clogged?
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  #8  
Old August 7th, 2006, 01:11 PM
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Hey Loic, I talked to Charles Sunday, the seal can be replaced without having to remove the front cover, you need to remove the main pulley, and behind it there are 8 small screws holding a cover on that protects the seal. Once the cover is off you can take out the seal. But the big part is removing the BIG nut on the pulley, sometimes they come off easy, other times it takes an act of God to get them off.
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Old August 7th, 2006, 01:57 PM
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Any specific hose that is known for getting clogged?

The grey tank looking thing on top of the p/s valve cover and the associated black hoses going to it.
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Old August 7th, 2006, 02:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
Any specific hose that is known for getting clogged?

The grey tank looking thing on top of the p/s valve cover and the associated black hoses going to it.
Also known as the flame arrester/breather/trap/thingy.

Thingy
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  #11  
Old August 7th, 2006, 03:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Hippert
Also known as the flame arrester/breather/trap/thingy.

Thingy
And if I am not mistaking, all those hoses/stuff can be cleaned with degreaser/soaked in brake cleaner/.... right?
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  #12  
Old August 7th, 2006, 05:01 PM
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brake clean will work. Carb cleaner will eat them. If they are collapsed they will need to be replaced. Likewise if the grey can is totally clogged it should be replaced but can be cleaned by soaking in gasoline etc.
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Old August 7th, 2006, 09:58 PM
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Mike, I wonder if that info on the cover plate on the front main seal might be for a different engine? Mine didn't have a plate at all, just pull off the balancer and pry out the old seal. IIRC a Chevy and Ford V8 are the same way.

That extra plate might be something on a serpentine engine possibly, since it has the oil pump right behind the front main?

-Hans
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  #14  
Old August 8th, 2006, 10:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
brake clean will work. Carb cleaner will eat them. If they are collapsed they will need to be replaced. Likewise if the grey can is totally clogged it should be replaced but can be cleaned by soaking in gasoline etc.
I removed all the tubes from the flame arrester/breather, all of them are in excellent shape and not blocked. The flame arrester looked good (i.e. not clogged), but as it was off, I cleaned it.
I did not touch any of the vaccum lines.
No change (none expected actually) in the oil leak. Starts leaking after the oil gets hot. I did not try to let it idle for a long period of time and see if it leaks.

Follow-up Post:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bowtracer
what kina vib?
Regarding the vibration.... Actually, last night Charles came with a strobe light to try to see "something". The strobe light was not flashing regularly at all. So we don't know if that's strobe light issue or not.
The truth is, when feeling/listening to the engine it looks like it is missing, but the trick is.... with a V8 even if one cylinder does not spark at all, it is kind of hard to really pinpoint. So now I wonder if there is anything wrong with the distributor cap (which does not like the tietest), the rotor, the big capacitor or something else.
All that was replaced about two years ago when I got fed up of having to use a dryer to get the truck started after it rained and the truck stayed outside for a long period of time.

Not sure what to do at this point, I might resort in taking it for a diagnostic to a local mechanic (I would not think that engine has anything that specific to it that any good mechanic would not be able to pinpoint the problem).

What do you guys think: anything else I can try/check or should I just bite the bullet and take it somewhere to get it looked at?

Thanks!
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  #15  
Old August 8th, 2006, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hans
Mike, I wonder if that info on the cover plate on the front main seal might be for a different engine? Mine didn't have a plate at all, just pull off the balancer and pry out the old seal. IIRC a Chevy and Ford V8 are the same way.

That extra plate might be something on a serpentine engine possibly, since it has the oil pump right behind the front main?

-Hans
I have 2 front covers off of 94s and both have the little plate. But, my serp belt front cover doesn't have it!
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Old August 8th, 2006, 11:35 AM
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I would replace the seal next. And I would also make sure everything is tight and there is no play in the crank. Sorry it was not the breathers, always have to hope for the easy fix.
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Old August 8th, 2006, 01:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
I would replace the seal next. And I would also make sure everything is tight and there is no play in the crank. Sorry it was not the breathers, always have to hope for the easy fix.
I am always up for easy fixes too! :-)
I guess once the belts are removed, I'll be able to check for play anywhere (which is a good thing it itself).
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  #18  
Old August 8th, 2006, 05:29 PM
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might be a memory lapse on my part on that little plate, the more I think about it the more I have a vague, passing suspicion that there may have possibly been something kinda resembling what you are describing.
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  #19  
Old August 10th, 2006, 11:42 AM
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I was looking at a similar diagram than this one: http://www.roversnorth.com/RRD04/RRD...D04_page19.htm

But I can't see any plate on it... Do you guys have any idea if that plate also requires a gasket to be sealed (I assume not). Any better diagram you can point me to?
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  #20  
Old August 30th, 2006, 07:29 PM
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Well, here is the latest (for those who care):
- I took it to an independant LR shop (RoverLand 4x4, Alexandria - seem to be great guys, I recommend them so far!). Looking at the engine they actually told me that the oil leak is coming from the top of the engine: the valley gasket needs to be replaced. Seems to take a lot of time to do (i.e. lots of money too).... So I'll see if I can get help to do it! :-)
- I also asked about the vibration as cgalpin had told me that this did not sound right. They told me to first check the ignition. The ignition wires were the "blue" type and they told me they don't hold longer than a year. The distributor rotor also seemed to leak. So I bought those from them (and a new set of spark plugs while I was at it). What I did discover changing the spark splugs is that they were a "little" too easy to remove.... Actually two or three of them could be removed by hand. So I am guessing this did not help! I remember replacing them on a very early Monday morning a few years ago just before leaving for work, so I probably forgot to torque them properly..... Not good! Anyway, now my idle RPM is higher than it used to be. So I would assume that the engine will run better now in any case (more power, more everything). But I'll check that once the gasket is replaced!
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