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need oil pan gasket


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I bought my '99 STS back in june. after a few thousand miles it was pretty clear that it used alot of oil. i could tell that it was leaking some and i assumed the synthetic oil that was in it contributed to high oil usage.after several months of textbook WOT's, and putting conventional oil in her i got my oil usage up to 700-800 mpq <_<

after inspection i'm pretty sure its the oil pan gasket. everything above that is dry.

I have a friend that used to work a a GM dealership an he told me that they charge $2500 to change an oilpan gasket. he said they have to pull the engine and tranny out and break them apart to get to the bolts and to have room to get the pan out.

i've never taken an engine out of a FWD car and i'm not sure what i would be getting into i have friends that have but none have ever touched a caddy.

any advice would be greatly appreciated. the guy from the dealership suggested i just keep pouring oil in it.

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Some people have reported some success in at least slowing it down a lot by pulling the pan bolts that you an get to , one at a time. Spray the internal & external threads down good with Brakleen and blow out the hole. Then coat the bolt threads with permatex thread sealer and torque to specs. You might be able to slow it to a point that you can live with. It's worth a try.

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Is it leaking oil to the ground or is the engine just greasy? If it is not leaking to the ground, I doubt the leak you found is the problem. The engine would need to be pulled in order to replace the oil pan gasket and the crankcase half seal. It is a big job...

It's possible that your rings are carboned up and are not seated - try doing a WOT with the gear selector in 2 - run it to 70 MPH and then let it coast back to 50 and repeat several more times - watch the rear view mirror to see if any soot/crud is blowing out the exhaust. You can buy a lot of oil and not even approach $2500...

The deep carbon cleaning procedure could also help - basically, you remove the spark plugs and pour enough GM Top Engine Cleaner into the cylinders to cover the piston and let it soak overnight. You will most likely need to do four of the cylinders at a time in order to completely cover the tops of the pistons - each cylinder needs to be at least 55mm below top dead center. The next day, use a vacuum pump to suck it out of the cylinders, unplug the ignition module and crank the engine over in order to remove more of the solvent. TEC is flammable so you do not want any stray sparks - have a fire extinguisher handy. Then being each cylinder to top dead center and used compressed air to blow out more of the solvent. Crank the engine over again without the plugs and then repeat the compressed air treatment. When you think you have all the Top Engine Cleaner out, repeat the compressed air and crank the engine over without the plugs. You want to be absolutely positive that you remove ALL the solvent so you do not hydrostatically lock the engine when you install the spark plugs and fire it up. You'll need at least 5 bottles of the Top Engine Cleaner. After the solvent treatment, drain the oil and install 7 quarts of new oil. Start the engine and it will really smoke - it will be like a giant mosquito fogger. Drive the car for 20 minutes - hammer it hard...LOL. Then change the oil and filter. You will need at least 5 bottles of TEC to do the job and the longer you leave it in the cylinders, the better it cleans.

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it is leaking on the ground. when i hit a deer with her she spent a week parked in the garage, and there were several spots on the floor that were probably 1 to 2 inchs in dia. it's just greasy above the oil pan, but the oil on the front side of the oilpan is wet and fresh. it looks like the leak is in a 2 to 3 inch space. i'm not sure if the amount of oil leaking would account for that much usage but when i do my WOT's i don't get any noticable smoke. at first i did . she runs like an entirly different car now than when i bought her.

the TEC treatment sounds scary, but i will keep it in mind.

scary scary scary :D

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it's just greasy above the oil pan, but the oil on the front side of the oil pan is wet and fresh. it looks like the leak is in a 2 to 3 inch space.

That sounds suspiciously like an oil filter adapter. Anyone else agree?

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It sure doesn't sound like the infamous o-ring or an oil pan gasket. If it happened suddenly when you hit a deer, I would look for damage. It sounds like it cracked a hose or fitting to me. The oil filter has an adapter on it that provides for flow to and from the oil cooler, which is a heat exchanger in the radiator. Look at the adapter, the fittings on it, and the hoses near the adapter. If you can let it idle on a rack and look at it when the engine is running, it will drip oil if that's what it is. It might even have a tiny little squirt. Use a very bright flashlight, not just a 75w trouble light.

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If you think it is the oil pan gasket you could loosen the bolts a little and try to work some RTV into the crack. Some people have had success in stopping a leak like that. I need pull my oil pan gasket bolts and coat them as mentioned above. It almost looks like, on my 94 Concours, that you could get the pan out but I have not heard anyone who has had any success. I just tightened mine once and it gave me 300 more miles per quart.

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i put my car on jackstands today and cleaned the pan and block off as best as i could. i started it up and let it run for 30 min. hoping it would be easy to spot something. didn't really expect it to be that easy but i thought it would be worth a try anyway.

i checked the oilfilter adapter and it was clean and dry.

when i hit the deer the only mech. problem was the AC condencer it had a very slight bend to it you couldn't even see the hole that was in it and you couldn't even notice the bend unless it was laying on the table.

i'm going to take it to work tomorrow and put it back on jackstands when i get home. hopefully that will give me a definate answer on where the leak is coming from.

it sure would suck to pull the engine and tranny to fix something that was not broken. I'd be kicking byself for months if i did that, not to mention my wife would never let me forget it :)

i can already picture it, the radio fuse would blow out and while i was looking for the right fuse she would be saying rememer that time you spent 3 weeks pulling the engine out of you car to fix an oil leak and you found out the oil filter wasn't tight. :D

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