View Full Version : 97 Deville oil pan leak

04-05-09, 01:43 PM
My 97 Deville 4.6L with 114k miles has developed major oil leak from the oil pan. I'm told to repair this will require pulling engine which is 11 hrs labor at a cost of $1500+. I am not mechanically inclined and am new to this forum. I am horrifed to learn of all the head casket problems, and the DEX cool issues. My question is whether or not to spend the money and fix the oil problem when bigger problems may be lurking. I really love the car, but resources $$$ are tight right now. Recently had to replace water pump, and air conditioner about two years ago. I assume if there is no antifreeze in my oil then the DEX most likely didn't cause my oil leak problem, but what is a good way to determine if the DEX is reaking havoc on my head gasket, and is it wise to switch to another antifreeze? Any advise for this "rookie" will be greatly appreciated!

Dave S Texas
04-05-09, 06:16 PM
What is your location? Any kin in Texas? I have a Union brother with that last name and his brother is a DVM in Austin.

04-05-09, 06:19 PM
There is nothing wrong with Dex. Just change it when you should or sooner. If the head gasket fails, you'll start to overheat. Until then, maintain it and enjoy it.

04-05-09, 06:52 PM
I know of the Biehle name in Texas (Vidor area) but not related. Our family originated in Germany and migrated to southeast Missouri. Actaully the town name is Biehle, Mo, named after my great great great great grandpa.

What is a DVM?

Dave S Texas
04-05-09, 09:20 PM
ok, thanks. Doctor of Veterinary Medicine=DVM

04-05-09, 10:31 PM
My 97 Deville 4.6L with 114k miles has developed major oil leak from the oil pan. I'm told to repair this will require pulling engine which is 11 hrs labor at a cost of $1500+. :eek: At the risk of getting chewed out by N* experts, couldn't you just try tightening the oil pan bolts? Everycar I've had that was leaking from there (especially, the Triumph Spitfire) this remedied the leaking oil without having to replace the gasket. Just a thought

04-05-09, 11:27 PM
Chances are it may be the halfcase seal, not the pan.

04-06-09, 11:17 AM
Yes, thightening the bolts occurred to me. I'm not very mechanically inclined but I'll give it a try. I also read on a different thread where a guy tried CarGO Quick Steel (reinforced epoxy paste) applied to the outside of the pan. I quess it may be worth a try before I haul it to the grave yard!!!!

04-06-09, 12:38 PM
Be careful. Over tightening the pan gasket can make it worse. If you are 100% positive that it is the pan and not the half case, pull one pan bolt at a time. Flush the hole and the bolt with Brakleen and then coat the bolt threads with Permatex thread sealer and torque to spec's. That MAY slow it down. You won't get at all the bolts.

Is it leaking so bad that junking it is a possibility? That does not sound like a pan or halfcase seal.

04-06-09, 12:50 PM
Ranger - thx for info. I'm not really sure about source of leak. My local mechanic said oil pan gasket, but I'm not positive how much he knows or how much time he spent looking at it. If if sits for a day the puddle may be 2-3 inches diameter, by the end of week probably 12 inches.
For a novice like me what is best way to determine if it is halfcase or oil pan that is source? Also have you heard of Quick Steel as a possible solution?

04-06-09, 02:28 PM
If you have the inclination and some newspaper or cardboard, you could locate exactly where the drip(s) are coming from. Sometimes it's very helpful information. Next time you park it for the 2-3 days place the paper under where the puddle forms and wait until the first dripping occurs. There you can see the approximate location where the leak may be coming from (use a flashlight) even if you are not Mech-inclined. Your mechanic probly didn't have the luxury of waiting that long to spot the source of the drip.

04-06-09, 04:04 PM
That's one hell of a leak and would be a lot for a pan or halfcase. Get under the car and see if the oil is dripping from above the pan gasket. You might have to clean it off first with some Brakleen or maybe add dye to the oil. If it is wet above, then it is probably the halfcase, but halfcase and pan gaskets usually just seep. Check the oil filter adapter, oil pressure switch and oil cooler lines.

04-08-09, 02:23 PM
Thanks for advice. Still haven't had time to verify oil leak source. If source of leak is say oil cooler lines, or oil filter adapter, is this more easily repaired compared to a oil pan or halfcase???

Got the following error codes:
B0533 fuel sensor open/shorted to BT
U1255 Class 2 Initialization error
U1064 Loss of communication with DIM
P0125 Engine Coolant temperature insufficient for closed loop fuel control

Question .... how can you clear these messages off the dash to see if they come back?

Also, forgot to mention my oil light flickers when I come to a stop after running the call for atleast 15-20 minutes and goes away when I excellerate.

When I check oil level its ok.

04-08-09, 04:37 PM
Oil lines or filter adapter are a piece of cake. To do the halfcase you have to drop the drivetrain and split the block in half.

After you pull the codes use the high fan and low fan to answer the prompts. High = YES and Low = NO. Answer no till you see CLEAR ALL CODES?

Flickering oil light is pressure, not quantity. You probably need to replace the pressure switch on the oil filter adapter.