Question about 1995 Buick Riviera
Replaced oil filter --problem persists.
No tubes appear to be leaking.
If it's the crankshaft oil seal -- how expensive is it to replace it?
It's probably not the crankshaft seal. It's probably the timing cover gasket. It's very common in these engines.
Posted on Jan 14, 2009
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
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The crankshaft oils seals are known to leak after approx 100,000 miles. The Harmonic Balancer (fan belt pulley) end of the engine will have lots of oil and road grit around the oil pan, air conditioning compressor, power steering pump and other area in the engine bay due to wind spread. This seal can be replace without removing the engine. Remove the harmonic balancer bolt and use a pulley puller. If the seal mating surface is grooved replace the balancer too or the new seal will fail soon.
The transmission "bell housing" will weep oil and or trans fluid if the rear crankshaft seal or the transmission seal develops a leak. This seal is much larger than the front seal so it lasts longer and need replacing less often. The transmission will need to be removed from the car to reach these seals.
The oil pan is sealed with silicone engine sealant and will dry out and leak also. Sometimes the leak looks like it is the front or rear seal (pulley or transmission end of engine) but it may be the oil pan leaking and dripping into the pressure plate inspection plate or the pulley. The oil pan can be removed and resealed without removing the engine or transmission but it is a little tricky. Dropping the engine's under brace and exhaust pipe is recommended. Additional engine/transmission support is needed to do that.
While you are under the car look near the oil filter. Above and forward (toward the fan belt is forward) and see if there is oil dripping from the oil pressure sending unit wire. It will leak into the electrical connector. Squeeze it and see if oil seeps out. If so replace the sending unit. It looks kind of like a spark plug screwed into the block.
Near the oil filter you will see the power steering pump mounted to the side of the pulley end of the engine and it is over the right CV drive axle and has several hoses connected. One larger hose is a none pressure hose that gravity feeds the pump from the fluid reservoir mounted above it on the passenger side wheel well in the engine bay. This hose eventually leaks and drips power steering fluid everywhere! It is a molded hose from the dealer parts dept. and relatively easy to replace. Messy but do-able.
Now the top side of the engine. The valve cover has a rubber gasket that shrinks over time in that hot engine bay. Take a Phillips head screw driver is see how loose the screws holding it are. Really loose hu? You can tighten them but you should replace it because it shrunk and that makes the screws loose.
You will need some silicone engine sealant each side of the distributor bridge at the driver's side of the cover. Get a manual to make sure you tighten those screws in the correct order.
Distributor "O"ring seal can leak. Two 12MM bolts to remove it and put a new "O"ring on and you are set. Mark the Distributor's position to the bridge bracket BEFORE you loosen those screws. Line it back up to the marks so you don't mess up the timing and reset the timing after is even better.
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