: Oil leak from upper and lower crankcase



tjwhite721
07-27-13, 11:25 PM
Hi All,

I just purchased a 2006 Cadillac DTS with 88k miles. I had the vehicle checked out at my dealership and found oil on the bottom of the pan. I had them put the dye in it, drove it for about a week and brought it back in. They used the special light and found oil leaks at both valve cover gaskets, upper and lower crankcase, and both oil pressure regulator and sensor.
Also, there is corossion on the alloy wheels.
Is the Cadillac product /quality going down?
Thanks,
Todd

Caddydave1
07-28-13, 12:34 PM
Todd,

I just bought a 2006 DTS with 72,000 and also noticed slight leaking at the bottom of the oil pan. I initially thought it was the drain plug so I replaced that. I got underneath the car and suspect it is slight seepage from around the oil pan gasket. I put in Mobil 1 5W 30 High Mileage (heard a lot of good things about this oil) and it appears the seepage has slowed due to the seal conditioner in the oil. Overall the car runs great and I'm happy with it. Give that a try as it will save you thousands in repairs. If you decide to keep the car long term you need to decide how much it's worth to repair vs getting rid of it. Over all I think the quality of the car is quite good.

Cadillac Cust Svc
07-28-13, 12:44 PM
Hi All,

I just purchased a 2006 Cadillac DTS with 88k miles. I had the vehicle checked out at my dealership and found oil on the bottom of the pan. I had them put the dye in it, drove it for about a week and brought it back in. They used the special light and found oil leaks at both valve cover gaskets, upper and lower crankcase, and both oil pressure regulator and sensor.
Also, there is corossion on the alloy wheels.
Is the Cadillac product /quality going down?
Thanks,
Todd

Hello Todd,

I apologize that you are having an issue with oil leaks from the vehicle that you just purchased. I know how frustrating issues can be on a recently purchased vehicle. I would like to call and speak to the dealership regarding what they found. Please private message me if you would like any assistance in working with the dealership. Thank you very much for your time.

Gregory W.
Cadillac Customer Care

tjwhite721
07-28-13, 03:31 PM
Todd,

I just bought a 2006 DTS with 72,000 and also noticed slight leaking at the bottom of the oil pan. I initially thought it was the drain plug so I replaced that. I got underneath the car and suspect it is slight seepage from around the oil pan gasket. I put in Mobil 1 5W 30 High Mileage (heard a lot of good things about this oil) and it appears the seepage has slowed due to the seal conditioner in the oil. Overall the car runs great and I'm happy with it. Give that a try as it will save you thousands in repairs. If you decide to keep the car long term you need to decide how much it's worth to repair vs getting rid of it. Over all I think the quality of the car is quite good.

Hi CaddyDave,

The majority of the oil seepage/leak is coming from the upper and lower crankcase. The Northstar is the only engine that has this. There is no actual "seal", it's a silicone type of gel substance that bonds it to the engine. So high millage oil will not work for the oil leak. It will help for everything else, but overtime it will get worst. And nobody will want to buy or accept a trade with a bad oil leak.
I have no choice but to have the engine drop and fix all the oil issues.
I hope Cadillac Corp will assist me in this matter because I believe in the Cadillac brand. I know investing in fixing the oil leak will extend the longevity of the car.

You might want to to think about doing the same CaddyDave.

Thanks,
Todd

Caddydave1
07-28-13, 04:12 PM
Todd,

Depending on how much you paid for your car and how long you plan to keep it, you need to decide if thousands in repairs is worth it. I paid approx 11k for my car and it runs and looks great. All of the depreciation has been driven out of the car and I bought it used so I willing to accept certain things.

My leak was more of a slow seepage around the oil pan that the HM oil has stopped. I don't plan on keeping the car for more than a few years so I'm happy with my solution. So far a dry garage floor! All of the research I have done have shown no probs with HM oils, in fact just the opposite. If your car is no longer under warranty, I doubt Cadillac will do anything about it. The stealership will certainly take you to the bank though. My engine runs great. You will find Northetars are notorius for leaking oil. If you plan on keeping your car for a long long time, by all means have the engine pulled and repaired. Good luck in whatever you decide. Let us know what the dealership charged for the repair so if any one wants to have it done knows what to expect.

tjwhite721
07-28-13, 05:39 PM
Todd,

Depending on how much you paid for your car and how long you plan to keep it, you need to decide if thousands in repairs is worth it. I paid approx 11k for my car and it runs and looks great. All of the depreciation has been driven out of the car and I bought it used so I willing to accept certain things.

My leak was more of a slow seepage around the oil pan that the HM oil has stopped. I don't plan on keeping the car for more than a few years so I'm happy with my solution. So far a dry garage floor! All of the research I have done have shown no probs with HM oils, in fact just the opposite. If your car is no longer under warranty, I doubt Cadillac will do anything about it. The stealership will certainly take you to the bank though. My engine runs great. You will find Northetars are notorius for leaking oil. If you plan on keeping your car for a long long time, by all means have the engine pulled and repaired. Good luck in whatever you decide. Let us know what the dealership charged for the repair so if any one wants to have it done knows what to expect.

Hi Dave,

The thing is that Cadillac made upgrades to the 2006 NorthStar Engine to stop the head gasket and oil issues. The NorthStar Engine should only "Use/burn" oil not leak it. I previously owned a 1999 Cadillac Seville with 195k miles on it. The head gasket went at 140k, had the whole engine rebuilt (top and bottom half), and it never leaked oil or had coolant issues again. It was rebuilt with the updated seals and o-rings. I put a 122k miles on that car. I recently sold it and purchased my 2006 Cadillac DTS. Cadillacs will last forever if you take care of them. However, it also depends how the engines are made at the factory. I truly believed that all the oil issues and head gasket issues were resolved with the NorthStar modifications by GM. However, it doesn't seem that way :-( I really don't want to keep a 5 gal container of Mobil 1 oil in my trunk to constantly add oil.

I've been going to the dealership for all my Cadillacs for the past 8 years now. Independent mechanics will cut corners and not follow GM standard. Plus, you wont get the warranty on parts/service like you do from the dealership.

Superjim
07-28-13, 06:20 PM
tjwhite721,

I had the rear valve cover gasket and the half case seal replaced on my 2006 at about 90,000 miles.
That was about 3 years ago...
Have almost 131,000 on it now and no leaks.
Mine was still under warranty, but I was told that if I had paid out of pocket... it would have been close to $3,000 bucks to fix.
I don't know if that figure is right or not...

Submariner409
07-28-13, 08:30 PM
Oil pan/oil manifold plate/halfcase seal replacement requires total engine removal and disassembly - including the crank bolts because the "halfcase" is also the main bearing stud girdle.

It's a dedicated, touchy job that is anything but run-of-the-mill. On the FWD Northstars the labor time alone is somewhere around 23 hours.

If the car itself is in good to excellent condition the engine work is most definitely "worth it". Your budget may say otherwise....... and you can buy an awful lot of engine oil for 23 hours of labor cost ...........

tjwhite721
07-29-13, 01:59 AM
tjwhite721,

I had the rear valve cover gasket and the half case seal replaced on my 2006 at about 90,000 miles.
That was about 3 years ago...
Have almost 131,000 on it now and no leaks.
Mine was still under warranty, but I was told that if I had paid out of pocket... it would have been close to $3,000 bucks to fix.
I don't know if that figure is right or not...

Hi Super Jim,

This only proves my theory about some Northstar engines coming from the factory and are not properly built at first. From 1999 to 2004 they were known for head gasket issues. However, if you got that fixed, the engine lasted forever.
You got the common oil issue problem fixed for the upgraded Northstar Engine and never had an issue since.
Why can't GM, build the engine properly the first time?
We all know that the Northstar Engine is the best in the world when properly built with no issues.
I think it's worth the investment fellas if you plan on keeping the Caddy till 140k plus miles.
Also, since they don't make the DTS anymore, I might just keep it forever :-)

MoistCabbage
07-29-13, 02:04 AM
'99-'04 were known for HG issues? The issue was drastically reduced after '99. There were changes to the casting process, and there was a switch to longer head bolts.

Northstars are the best engines in the world? Define "best".

tjwhite721
07-29-13, 07:12 PM
'99-'04 were known for HG issues? The issue was drastically reduced after '99. There were changes to the casting process, and there was a switch to longer head bolts.

Northstars are the best engines in the world? Define "best".

The switch to longer head bolts wasn't until 2005. The issue was not drastically reduced after 99. There were head gaskets blown after 10k miles with some of them.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northstar_engine_series

TMP01
07-31-13, 08:29 AM
I've had my 07 DTS for 3 months now, and just ran into an oil leak from the back of the engine. Scared the pants off me. Fortunately, in my case, two of the bolts on the rear valve cover had walked out to the point where they took a full turn by HAND.

Tightened it up, no more leak :)

Took it to a friend's garage to have the work done. Had that repaired, and front and rear motor mounts replaced with genuine GM parts. Total bill was a tick under $400.00. Needless to say, I was pretty pleased :)

Submariner409
07-31-13, 08:48 AM
The switch to longer head bolts wasn't until 2005.

Didn't the longer (fine thread 11 X 1.5) head bolts begin in 2000 or a bit later and the coarse thread bolts begin in late 2004 ?

There's quite a bit of Northstar info in the sticky posts at the top of the Engines; Northstar Performance forum. The non-scientific poll on engine failures by year is interesting from a CF member point of view.

You can always go into www.gmpartsgiant.com (http://www.gmpartsgiant.com) and enter several different cars/years to look at the progression of GM part numbers for head bolts

Head bolts - Northstar L37

1999 - #ES72186 FelPro
2002 - #ES72187 FelPro
2006 - #ES72217 FelPro.

......it's quite instructional to go to the FelPro site and look up the specifications for each of those part numbers.

Wikipedia is a wonderful resource - but, like these forums, the content is written by amateurs, researchers and professionals - so information is always subject to varying degrees of error. Wikipedia undergoes editorial update 24/7. Take its info with a grain of salt.

1BadCadSTS
07-31-13, 08:55 AM
Didn't the longer (fine thread 11 X 1.5) head bolts begin in 2000 or a bit later and the coarse thread bolts begin in late 2004 ?

There's quite a bit of Northstar info in the sticky posts at the top of the Engines; Northstar Performance forum. The non-scientific poll on engine failures by year is interesting from a CF member point of view.

You can always go into www.gmpartsgiant.com (http://www.gmpartsgiant.com) and enter several different cars/years to look at the progression of GM part numbers for head bolts

Correct

00 saw longer bolts and the 04 my got better threads.

tjwhite721
07-31-13, 11:25 PM
Didn't the longer (fine thread 11 X 1.5) head bolts begin in 2000 or a bit later and the coarse thread bolts begin in late 2004 ?

There's quite a bit of Northstar info in the sticky posts at the top of the Engines; Northstar Performance forum. The non-scientific poll on engine failures by year is interesting from a CF member point of view.

You can always go into www.gmpartsgiant.com (http://www.gmpartsgiant.com) and enter several different cars/years to look at the progression of GM part numbers for head bolts

Head bolts - Northstar L37

1999 - #ES72186 FelPro
2002 - #ES72187 FelPro
2006 - #ES72217 FelPro.

......it's quite instructional to go to the FelPro site and look up the specifications for each of those part numbers.

Wikipedia is a wonderful resource - but, like these forums, the content is written by amateurs, researchers and professionals - so information is always subject to varying degrees of error. Wikipedia undergoes editorial update 24/7. Take its info with a grain of salt.

Thanks for the info. However, the bottom line is that from 99 to 2004, NorthStars were known for Head Gasket issues. I haven't met one person who owned a Cadillac from those years, who didn't have coolant issues which the head gasket went in time. Dealers wouldn't accept Cadillacs as trades from those years or reduce the price because of the head gasket and transmission issue.

I'm speaking from experience as the head gasket went on my Seville SLS at 140k miles on the interstate. Somehow I was able to drive it home after it cooled down at 50 MPH. I'm also speaking from seeing many Devilles, and STS's getting the head gaksets replaced at the dealership.

Wikipedia is just one resource on the Northstar engine. There are plenty other internet resources backing up my information on the headgasket issues from 99 to 04.

----------

Update!

Cadillac is working on my case for the oil leak issue from the upper and lower crankcase! Thanks sharon and ray from cadillac customer service :-)

thanks,

t. White

MoistCabbage
08-01-13, 12:02 AM
Not sure where you got your info, but it's wrong.

tjwhite721
08-01-13, 05:11 AM
Not sure where you got your info, but it's wrong.


Hi MoistCabbage,

Can you please explain where I'm wrong? Are you saying the NorthStar engines weren't known for headgasket issues?

Thanks,

MoistCabbage
08-01-13, 07:32 PM
Not specifically from '99-'04. As posted, '97-'99 are considered the most likely years for HG issues, '99 being the worst. HG problems from '00-'04 aren't very common, and from LATE '04+, are almost unheard of.

Dealers do not refuse cars or certain years because of possible HG issues. They may send them directly to auction, but that's because those cars are getting pretty old now.

tjwhite721
08-01-13, 08:38 PM
Not specifically from '99-'04. As posted, '97-'99 are considered the most likely years for HG issues, '99 being the worst. HG problems from '00-'04 aren't very common, and from LATE '04+, are almost unheard of.

Dealers do not refuse cars or certain years because of possible HG issues. They may send them directly to auction, but that's because those cars are getting pretty old now.

Yep! I had a 99!