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Old 03-25-2009, 07:32 PM   #1
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Default 2.8L 12v engine oil leaking profusely

Hello again. I am trying to rebuild my 1996 Audi A4 Quattro with 2.8L 12v V6. It has 153,000 miles on it and quite a few problems. One of the two biggest problems is that the engine is leaking a lot of oil, even when turned off, by the oil cooler and on the top by the valve covers. I unfortunately bought it as is from a real shady dealership and noticed this, among other problems, a week later when I changed the oil. I have looked into trying to get the dealership to buy it back and/or compensate for the repair but don't know my options and talking to the manager have not gotten my any where so far and thus have decided to repair it my self for now. I don't think it matters but when I changed the oil I put in Castrol 5W30 full synthetic oil. Any way oil is leaking really bad and I haven't basically driven the car for six months because of the leak and the fact that the passenger side ball joint completely sheared off the lower front control arm. I am planning on fixing all of these problems over the summer. First I will tackle the engine and fix this oil leak and change the timing belt/water pump. I will post other issues I have with the car in a different thread so as to keep things organized. Any help regarding the leak and advice on changing the timing belt and water pump will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 03-26-2009, 04:34 AM   #2
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The hardest part in fixing oil leaks is usually finding them.. I'd suggest giving it a really good cleaning, and then try to isolate the leak, then attack it..
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Old 03-26-2009, 05:20 AM   #3
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I had problems with the valley pan and head gaskets on my 12v.
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Old 03-26-2009, 08:39 AM   #4
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Oil leak sources:

B/n oil pan and oil cooler there is a o-ring that's notorious for a leak similar to what you said. You need to remove the cooler and replace. It's a $2 part, just mildly involved to remove it.

Next is the lower and upper oil pan seal. I wouldn't touch the upper if you arent 100% certain its leaking. It's involved to say the least.

The lower is pretty easy, but I'd clean off hte pan and make sure that's where the oil is coming from. Def do the o-ring mentioned above first.

Then valve covers. Simple to do. Pretty self explanitory too. Make sure to clean the surfaces before reinstalling. Before doing those seals, make sure to clean all around and make sure the cam seals aren't leaking. If they are, things get a bit more involved.

Then there's the valley pan. That is involved. You need to remove the IM to get to it. It generally leaks oil down the back of the motor and down the trans fwiw, so if your leaks are predominately towards the front of the motor, this isn't your issue... though I haven't heard of a 12v that hasn't had this part leaking.

That's about all I can think of at the moment. Take it one step at a time. You're talking about <$75 in gaskets here, it's just the time that sucks.

Search the 12v development portion to find info on doing some of this stuff. I've posted about it more times than I can think of at this rate.
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Old 03-26-2009, 11:45 AM   #5
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Thank you so much for your input, especially Jretal. I have a few additional questions now.

1.) The o-ring you mentioned which few other people have told me about is that in between the oil filter and the oil cooler or is it farther in? I will have to take a look at it again and I might end up saving $70 on a new oil cooler which I was about to order.

2.) The last time I looked at the under body I did not see any oil leak from the oil pan it-self, mainly from the oil cooler, so I hope I don't have to worry about it in the future. Is the lower, and may be upper pan, gasket known to go bad after some time and would you suggest replacing it while I am in there working on the engine?

3.) As far as the valve cover gaskets go I see a kit of about $150 to $200 on various websites manufactured by Victor Reinz. This kit has more than just the valve cover seals. It also has the cam seals and e.t.c. The description says "Contains all gaskets required to perform a complete head replacement." How involved is it to do all that? I figure I will just do it at once with in a two/three week period during the summer and get it over with so I don't have to worry about engine related issues hopefully for another 50,000 miles.

4.) This "valley pan" that is mentioned might be an issue with my engine because I have oil dripping from the top back end of the engine down to the clutch/trans and then it seeps back towards the cat converter and burns and creates a lot of smoke. How involved is it to repair this issue and does it require removal of the engine? I don't have a lot of experience doing this kind of stuff but I am an engineering major, good with tools and very eager to learn. The car is already useless so if I further break things and can't fix it no big deal, but my goal is to get this car in good running condition. Any additional help from you people will be greatly appreciated. I will go probe the tech articles for additional info.
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Old 03-26-2009, 06:59 PM   #6
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Jretal is right.All these seals are typical 2.8 problems. Do the crank seal when you do the timing belt. When you do the valve covers do the cam seals. The ones at the back leak down on the cat too.I would also recommend getting a repair manual to help you along.The repair work you are embarking on is well documented in various forums here.It sure has helped me.
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Old 03-26-2009, 06:59 PM
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12v, 28, 28l, a4, audi, cooler, cover, leak, leaking, oil, pan, removing, upper, v6, valve


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