Bought it as is, was told that the oil pan gasket needed replacing. Had that & oil pan replaced. Apparently that was not the problem. Is there a simple way to find this leak, bearing in mind I am not a mechanic?
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It looks like that the cause of your leaking pan gasket is excessive blow-by gases pressure due to worn out piston rings. The low oil level is a telltale sign the you are consuming (burning) oil because of this problem. I recommend that you have a ring and if possible also bearing job to your engine. Merely replacing the torn out gasket will just temporary solve your leak problem. Since you will still burn oil, your emission problem will not be solved.
TRANSMISSION FLUID LEAKS,CAN BE FOUND AROUND PAN GASKET.CHECK PAN GASKET,IF IT LOOKS WET AND YOU SEE FLUID DRIPPING AROUND THE EDGE OF OIL PAN, REPLACE PAN GASKET, WHILE YOU REPLACING PAN GASKET REPLACE TRANSMISSION FILTER WHILE OIL PAN OFF.IF TRANSMISSION OIL PAN NOT LEAKING, CHECK TRANSMISSION OIL COOLER LINES GOING INTO RADIATOR YOU WILL LOOSE A LOT OF FLUID THERE ALSO TORQUE SHAFT SEAL WILL CAUSE HEAVY FLUID LEAK WHILE ENGINE RUNNING CHECK OIL COOLER LINES AND LOOK AT THE TORQUE AREA WHILE ENGINE RUNNING YOU WILL SEE FLUID POURING WHILE ENGINE RUNNING THE OIL PUMP PRESSURE WILL PUSH FLUID OUT AT THE LEAKING AREAS.
Are you sure have a leak,? you saw it? they usually don't leak only from the valve cover gasket.
If you see oil drip by the passenger side of the oil pan the leak could be the crankshaft seal.
if the oil is in the center of the engine rear main seal is the problem.
If al around the oil pan is wet with oil but the oil do not make it to the floor, then the person who is doing the oil changes is not cleaning properly.
If it is in fact the oil pan gasket that is leaking, then you would first need to drain out the oil through the oil drain plug and recycle the oil. Then you can remove the oil pan and replace the old gasket with a new one, refill with the proper amount of oil. Then you can run the car and see if it still leaks.
There are two gaskets, one is between the lower pan and the upper pan, and the second is between the upper pan and the engine. You only need to replace the gasket that leaks. If both are leaking, replace them both. To find out where the leaks are, raise the car, get underneath, and look closely all around the oil pans to see where the oil is coming from. Use a flashlight if necessary. You should be able to trace any leaking oil upward to its source.
The oil pan gaskets are not necessarily the only sources of oil leaks. Check to see if any oil is coming from behind the timing cover, and look for oil coming from the valve cover gasket.
you oil pan bolts of the bottom of the oil resivour the gaskit fits in between the surfaces where the pan meets it creating a seal witch in your case needs to be replaced this procedure replaces that gaskit to create a new seal
then you need to replace the gaskets drain oil from oil pan take all bolts out and drop the pan as far as valve pan covers buy rubber gaskets not cork they are a lot more pliable and less prone to leak
Before removing the oil pan, drain all the oil from the car. You should be able to remove the pan with basic tools, not sure what socket size though. Once you have the pan off compare the new gasket with the new one to make sure it is the right one. Scrape off the old gasket and replace with the new using a high temp gasket sealant to attach the gasket. Bolt back on to the engine refilling with new oil and checking for leaks. NOTE: your oil pump is protected by your oil pan so be careful not to hurt while sliding in and out of place