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Little oil drip by filter, why?

 
Old 07-12-2019, 02:09 PM
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Christopher Zach
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Default Little oil drip by filter, why?

So I've had a small oil leak forever on the 944S, and I'm finally thinking it's time to fix it: The underside of the engine is filthy, and it's annoying.

It only makes a puddle when running or just after stopping. With a flashlight I can see it's coming from the oil filter. Except I have it crunched down tight (have to use one of those things that fits on the filter like a cap) and it looks like it's coming right from the filter itself.

Any idea how to properly seal that filter to the console? The car is normally parked nose down, so it needs to always work.


Drip drip drip....
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Old 07-12-2019, 04:46 PM
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Sure it's not power steering fluid? It looks awfully dark to be oil. And PS fluid has a habit of coating everything in that area anyway.

Also, the filter shouldn't be tightened more than hand tight. It may seem counter-intuitive but over tightening it can actually cause things to leak when they normally wouldn't.
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Old 07-12-2019, 05:45 PM
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I agree you need to make sure that's the actual leak. You can wipe down the area with a rag until clean, then use a flashlight pointed at the area while the engine is running to determine if the oil is indeed coming from between the filter and the housing. If it appears while you are watching it, it's a sure sign.

If you can determine that that is the site of the leak, you should remove the filter and check the mating surface. You may have a little scratch / nick that is allowing oil to escape. In that case, you can get a better housing or you can polish the mating surface ... but you would have to do this very well because it needs to be perfectly flat. A short-term fix would be to use a tiny layer of an oil-resistant gasket material, like permatex ultra black.

Do the S models have the external oil cooler? If so, are you sure it's not one of the adjacent oil cooler hoses?
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Old 07-12-2019, 06:27 PM
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Christopher Zach
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I have wiped it down and I can see the oil coming down from there. It's annoying but not the end of the universe.

My guess is a little scratch or something, I could also take the filter off and put it on hand tight instead of gorilla tight.

The stock S models have the internal oil-water cooler, but not an external one. I think they put the external cooler on the S2 and later models.

It's not power steering fluid because that blew up about 20 years ago. I just took off the pulley and drained the system and drive it as manual steering. One of these days I need to get a round tuit and replace the rack. I also need to replace that swaybar bushing, the old one failed because it was soaked with oil........

Never dull.
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Old 07-12-2019, 08:15 PM
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Make sure you didn't put the new filter on with the old filter's rubber gasket still stuck to the manifold. Sounds basic, but I've seen this trick a few times. Smear the new seal with oil to keep it from sticking next change.

Check the aluminum mating surface of the manifold for scratches, nicks, etc. Clean with a single-edge razor, solvent, etc. If there are nicks, perhaps a careful filling with JB Weld will take care of them.

BTW, I learned years ago to torque the filter to spec this simple way. Spin it on until it just hits the manifold. Paint mark at 12 o'clock, then turn once, ie 360 degrees. It will be properly torqued. Cheers,
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Old 07-12-2019, 10:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Christopher Zach View Post
I also need to replace that swaybar bushing, the old one failed because it was soaked with oil.
Replace the two center sway bar bushings with delrin, keep the outer ones rubber.
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Old 07-13-2019, 11:20 AM
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Also check the camshaft seal. I had a similar leak that I thought for sure was the filter, but after taking off the covers it was clearly dripping down behind them.

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Old 07-16-2019, 09:10 PM
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Christopher Zach
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Originally Posted by JustinL View Post
Also check the camshaft seal. I had a similar leak that I thought for sure was the filter, but after taking off the covers it was clearly dripping down behind them.
Good point. When I get the car back I'll start by wiping everything down, then running it till oil drip, then checking to see if anything on top of the filter (maybe with a paper towel stuck up there).
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