Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville
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Cadillac DeVille 1985 to 2005 including:
1985-1992 Fleetwood, 1993 Sixty Special, All FWD Forum Discussion, Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Hey all, I am planning to buy a 1993 deville from CA, and either drive it or ship it back ...
  1. #1
    marshkid1 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Hey all,
    I am planning to buy a 1993 deville from CA, and either drive it or ship it back to MN.
    My friend just had a look at it, and took a bunch of pictures.
    I noticed what looks to be significant oil film all on the left side of the engine bay near the serpentine belt, all over the strut tower, and even on the inside of the hood.
    I haven't had a deville in 10 years, and have no idea about their common issues.

    Does anyone have any ideas what this could be? is it something serious? I am trying to determine if I can drive it back (preferred because it will be fun), or if I should play it safe and just ship it.

    I will post the three main pictures, in addition a link to all the pictures. The car is $1800, had 84,500 miles, and is in good running condition.

    Thanks so much!!

    Mike


    http://www.flickr.com/photos/54227026@N00/7991174940/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/54227026@N00/7991174578/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/54227026@N00/7991174284/

    The rest of them


    http://www.flickr.com/photos/5422702...7631547093016/

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  3. #2
    drewsdeville's Avatar
    drewsdeville is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Probably the front crank seal, which would probably be safe to drive home, but don't assume. Check the area for any really wet spots, indicating a bigger leak. If the entire area is covered in greasy, grime crud, and no gleaming, shiny "fresh" spots, it's probably just a slow leak that's been making a mess for years.

  4. #3
    dennis93coupe's Avatar
    dennis93coupe is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    It could also be a power steering leak. Hoses and lines are down on that side.

  5. #4
    marshkid1 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Hmm, Ok, good point on the freshness of the oil. It does seem like a old slow leak to me from the images. I really wish I was there to see it in person, my buddy isn't a really big car guy (he's the one who took the pictures), I don't think he even noticed the oil, haha. Well I have some thinking to do. Shipping quotes are around $850, its not so much the money, I will be missing out on the fun factor if I ship it :/

  6. #5
    PineyJustice is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Is that a stripe of oil on the hood liner?

    From the grime factor to it, I'd guess that leak is slow enough to have been around for a while but a stripe on the hood liner suggests otherwise... Possibly a leak that has already been fixed?

    The grime to that passenger side shock tower suggests cam cover though.

    Have your buddy check power steering fluid level and oil level, then start the car and use a white sheet of paper to look for castoff, that should determine if the leak is fast enough to cause major issues.

  7. #6
    basscatt's Avatar
    basscatt is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    that car looks really rough - more like 184K miles than 84K miles -

    that thing has been leaking engine oil and power steering fluid for a long time
    to get that much crud built up -
    that tells me the car has NOT been maintained very well -

    the interior is rough looking - seats are torn up -
    you can't just buy new door panels -
    they haven't been made for years -

    no radio -

    look at the pics of the underside of the car -
    trans pan leaking - trans/oil lines leaking -

    without looking very hard - I can see an easy $1500 worth of repairs -
    and a cheap radio is going to cost another $200 -
    so that original $2700 is up to $4400 -

    what about shocks and struts - the SSS warning in the dash comes on for a reason -

    what about brakes - belts/hoses -

    I think you can find a much better car for the $2700 +++ you are going to put into this car -

  8. #7
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    I agree. Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you can find much better for nearly 3 grand. Although some of the paperwork suggests that he got new passive struts, the Service Suspension message is of concern. The biggest thing is the oil leak. It looks like it's been going on for awhile, and the giant splash pattern on the underhood cover isn't encouraging. Totally different car, explains care for the vehicle, my Dad had a 99 Concours that he was going to sell me before the A/C crapped out AND we found my 96. This car had to deal with me the leadfoot, my Dad who wasn't far behind, and being around 9 people in general, including a hyperactive 4 year old. It had a little over 90k when he sold it, and the driver's seat looked better, not to mention the engine bay was way cleaner. That's because it was well maintained. The condition of this SDV indicates it was a DD that didn't receive the care it should have. Keep looking. C-Body DeVilles were incredibly popular on their time, and as a result they are everywhere, and a very good condition example can be had for not much more than what this is is at. Likely much closer too. You'll find one.

  9. #8
    Manic Mechanic is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Well it's a '93, what do you expect for under 2K? I don't think it's all that bad myself. It's a good driver but yeah not a collector. As for the mystery leak I believe it's the residue from an previous A/C freon leak. Here's my case. I've had my head under thousands of hoods and that's what it looks like. When an refrigerant line leaks it spews freon and compressor oil out as a boiling mist or fog that manages to make a wide spread thin tacky grease field that doesn't dry and really holds the dirt. It also travels in a mostly straight line from leak to surface and won't build thick enough to get behind pulleys or drip off the bottom of a component in it's path. A thick fluid leak like P/S or motor oil has a hard time getting that much coverage short of a P/S high pressure rupture or a belt slung oil seal leak, and those would get everywhere because they spread past the original contact points, sling off belts and drip off the bottoms of anything. None of the pulleys have oil on them and the mess isn't thicker along the bottom edges of everything. A/C oil seems to bond to the plastic like the coolant reservoir and is very hard to remove but will wipe right off the painted metal surfaces. Notice how it's all in the area of the two refrigerant service ports (they also now have new red and blue caps in the pics indicating recent replacement). The two valves (valves are the most common leak point in A/C systems) are pointing up and at the hood liner which would explain that big dark stain on it though the belt drive is clean of oil though still dusty from years of use.

    I would question the seller about the condition of the A/C and what recent repairs were done to it. In fact the foam rubber on the suction line running behind the upper radiator looks brand new, they are often stained and nicked up during other maintenance and repairs.

    I like the condition of the coolant and especially the rubber seals of the radiator cap. That indicates proper maintenance of the cooling system and no leaks due to a worn out cap.

    I think the mileage is correct just from what I can see of the control arm bushings, if it were 100K more they would be busted or new.

    The backside bottom area of the radiator has clean dry oil cooler lines and looks good, no jerry-rigs.

    In fact to a mechanic everything mechanical looks decent. I don't see any evidence of much time spent under the hood such as grease stains, scratches, or wrench marks. This is good in that it's all original and no major repairs have been needed nor has somebody been in there time and time again trying to keep it running or hooterizing things with improper repair methods but also very bad to drive across country because it could easily need a water pump or plugs and wires, cap and rotor, brake fluid flushed, etc. to be able to make a long trip like that without breaking down. I wouldn't be surprised if much of that stuff is 20 years old now. Not what I consider dependable. Somethings on a car don't age well irregardless of mileage. If you do buy it try to have your buddy drive it daily for at least a week before you try to fly in and then drive it home.

    Vernon

  10. #9
    dennis93coupe's Avatar
    dennis93coupe is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Quote Originally Posted by marshkid1 View Post
    Hey all,
    I am planning to buy a 1993 deville from CA, and either drive it or ship it back to MN.
    I'm not one bit interested, but where in CA. I'd be more than happy to look at it for you if it isn't too far away.

    Edit couldn't get the pictures to come up earlier. It needs a good cleaning up. Looks like it has been repainted at one point. I doubt it has ever had the underneath engine and compartment cleaned. From the pictures, the only obvious leak is the engine oil cooler lines. No pictures of the passenger side of engine. If you replace the leather on that front seat, you are looking at about 900 bucks for the hide. All C body FWD's have the arm rest driver side syndrome, just the way they were made. The wheels look scabbed up a bit. Everything can be fixed up, it's a matter of how much you want to spend on a car that doesn't have that much book value. I've seen them out here advertised on craigslist at a dealer with more miles for 5,000 cleaned up. That certainly does not mean they are worth it.

  11. #10
    basscatt's Avatar
    basscatt is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Quote Originally Posted by dennis93coupe View Post
    I'm not one bit interested, but where in CA. I'd be more than happy to look at it for you if it isn't too far away.
    ------------------------
    what a nice offer - you are a good man Dennis -

  12. #11
    marshkid1 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    The plan for this car is to get it home and get the underbody rubberized and use it as a mainly a winter car. I know its not perfect, but seems pretty decent, just the oil leak was concerning me.

    The car is at Dickson's motor service in San Gabriel. I guess the owner (Mr. Dickson) passed away and this was his car. I was assuming that it was well taking care of considering he owned a shop.

    Hey, if you want to take a look at ... Give me a ring (5079905527), and we can discuss.

    Thanks so much guys, you have been very helpful

    Mike

  13. #12
    PineyJustice is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    A small oil leak is going to be trivial, the big questions you need to ask are

    what are the codes

    does it overheat

    structural rust

    Everything else is fairly trivial

    If it runs I'd take it at 2 grand, but any major issues will let you haggle the price lower.

  14. #13
    drewsdeville's Avatar
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Lol. I like how an oil leak questioned netted few actual answers but a slew of financial advice.

    Only on CF

  15. #14
    dennis93coupe's Avatar
    dennis93coupe is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    Quote Originally Posted by drewsdeville View Post
    Lol. I like how an oil leak questioned netted few actual answers but a slew of financial advice.

    Only on CF
    The oil leak from the oil cooler hoses is not that bad, I've seen worse. It's the other side that you can't see what is leaking. You will not find rust on this car where they rust in the midwest or anywhere else they put salt on the roads. The guy owned a shop? Sometimes they are the worst. LOL
    basscatt and basscatt like this.

  16. #15
    marshkid1 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Need help diagnosing leak, PICTURES included, 1993 sedan deville

    What did you notice to make you think its been repainted?

    I was staring at it for a while and saw it doesn't have the rear 4.9L injection and Cadillac on the back. And the flaking paint on the upper door jams. I'd know though... Maybe


    Quote Originally Posted by dennis93coupe View Post
    I'm not one bit interested, but where in CA. I'd be more than happy to look at it for you if it isn't too far away.

    Edit couldn't get the pictures to come up earlier. It needs a good cleaning up. Looks like it has been repainted at one point. I doubt it has ever had the underneath engine and compartment cleaned. From the pictures, the only obvious leak is the engine oil cooler lines. No pictures of the passenger side of engine. If you replace the leather on that front seat, you are looking at about 900 bucks for the hide. All C body FWD's have the arm rest driver side syndrome, just the way they were made. The wheels look scabbed up a bit. Everything can be fixed up, it's a matter of how much you want to spend on a car that doesn't have that much book value. I've seen them out here advertised on craigslist at a dealer with more miles for 5,000 cleaned up. That certainly does not mean they are worth it.

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