Oil leak, trying to pin point
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This is a discussion on Oil leak, trying to pin point within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; 2003 WRX Sedan So when at a red light i noticed that nice smell of burning oil.. When i popped ...

  1. #1
    Registered User dburke911's Avatar
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    Oil leak, trying to pin point

    2003 WRX Sedan
    So when at a red light i noticed that nice smell of burning oil.. When i popped the hood there was smoke coming from the back left side of the engine, near the turbo. a decent amount of smoke. Oil level was pretty damn low. I bought some oil, dumped about 1 qt into the motor however without any daylight left ill wait untill tomorrow to turn the engine on and/or look for possible leak location. any good spots to check for leaks? common problems?

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    Registered User nsibanez's Avatar
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    just pp the hood and start looking at the highest point. Any guess would be the valve covers

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    Registered User nsibanez's Avatar
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    I mean, sounds obvious when looking for leaks, but that's all you can really do. I've heard mostly the valve cover gaskets from the bugeyes. Start there. Hopefully it's just that because they're simple maybe?
    But if you say smoke is coming from the engine bay, its coming from just that.

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    Registered User DiRty Impreza's Avatar
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    its probably your oil feed line.
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    Registered User dburke911's Avatar
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    if its the turbo feed or drain line, is it a faulty gasket or is it loose or cracked?

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    Registered User UEDan's Avatar
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    Re: Oil leak, trying to pin point

    Check the cv boot too. A fresh cv boot spill looks and smell like a nasty oil leak, with a hint of burning rubber.

    Posted from a fone.

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    Registered User InsaneManiac's Avatar
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    Drain the oil. Put new oil in and then stick some cardboard under the thing. See where exactly the oil is leaking from. When it comes to the smoke it could be your cv boot flecking grease up on the down/up pipe and the grease is basically burning off and making it look like it's smoking. A suggestion, jack your car up, inspect from the top and the bottom, inspect closely for any large amounts of grease/oil. You might find the leak. Possible your oil feed line could be leaking or the gaskets aren't working. Without close inspection you will not be able to really tell.
    Last edited by InsaneManiac; 10-16-2012 at 07:55 PM.

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    Registered User 98sob's Avatar
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    had a very similar issue with my 02 WRX. Valve Cover Gaskets were the issue.

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    Registered User nsibanez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by InsaneManiac View Post
    Drain the oil. Put new oil in and then stick some cardboard under the thing. See where exactly the oil is leaking from. When it comes to the smoke it could be your cv boot flecking grease up on the down/up pipe and the grease is basically burning off and making it look like it's smoking. A suggestion, jack your car up, inspect from the top and the bottom, inspect closely for any large amounts of grease/oil. You might find the leak. Possible your oil feed line could be leaking or the gaskets aren't working. Without close inspection you will not be able to really tell.
    You could test it with dye too, and it should stand out a little bit more.

  11. #10
    Admiral Ackbar the 1st mycologist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UEDan View Post
    Check the cv boot too. A fresh cv boot spill looks and smell like a nasty oil leak, with a hint of burning rubber.

    Posted from a fone.
    Best guess by far right there.

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    Moderator Donkey's Avatar
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    NAPA has axles for around $60 if you have one local.
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    Registered User dburke911's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone, much appreciated

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    I am having this same issue right now on my bugeye, I took it to the dealer and they said it was the valve cover gaskets were bad and quoted me $600 to repair it.. I ended up buying new gaskets and did it myself and cleaned all the old oil off and it's still leaking so I glad I saved myself the $600 but I'm still pissed that its leaking, I thought it could be the feed/return lines as well but I'm not sure, I guess back to the dealer I go

  15. #14
    Moderator Donkey's Avatar
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    Finding leaks is not that hard. It a pretty common sense method. Go to your local DIY car wash and clean the soiled area with a pressure washer and engine degreaser. Drive car. Jack up car and look for leak. Buy a mechanics mirror to help look in tight places.
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    I went to the car wash after replacing the gaskets and cleaned off all the old oil and grease that had built up over the years and by time I got home about 5min drive there was already fresh oil on the uppipe and lower control arm and axle but the rear of the valve covers looked dry and after a couple days (thurs-sat) its smoking just as bad if not worse since I replaced the gaskets and its only on the passenger side. I'm dropping it back off at the dealer tomorrow morning hopefully I can get this taking care of asap

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