An engine oil leak is a common problem that’s found on different models of cars and trucks. Sure, it can mess up the driveway for the owner, but it could also cause engine damage unless diagnosed properly.
The average car holds 5 quarts of oil. Many GM cars now hold 6 quarts of black gold. Still this won’t last long if you have a continuous leak. And even less time if it’s an oil pump pressurized leak.
Yes, all car makers equip their automobiles with an engine oil warning light. I would rather not rely on this device. Why don’t I trust the warning light? The pressure sensor that turns it on can fail at any time.
When this happens you get no warning or false information. What’s worse is when this leak develops after an oil and filter change. If this happens, all fingers point to the mechanic that performed the last oil change.
Myself and the mechanics in my shop all certifications from nationally recognized organizations. On top of that, we have many years of experience. When we started receiving comebacks with engine oil leaks directly after engine oil and filter changes I knew something was wrong.
Motor Oil Leaking After Service
The oil leak comebacks where on the same 2 engines. The 3.9L and 5.2L engines. Both of these engines remain very popular. In the fleet I service we find them in Dodge ram trucks and Jeep grand Cherokee sport utility vehicles. After changing the engine oil on the Jeep Cherokee it came back the next day with the driver saying there was oil spots under the truck.
I lifted it up and the oil filter was wet. After checking the tightness of the oil filter and found that it was very tight, maybe even too tight. Finally, I thought that I had a defective oil filter and that my fellow car mechanics might have been experiencing the very same thing.
Maybe even a defective batch or case of the bad oil filters. I took the extra time on this vehicle and installed some engine oil dye. I ran the engine and then leak checked it with a black light.
The oil leak was not from the oil filter, but just above it from a part known as the engine oil filter adapter. This is what the filter screws onto. This is an easily misdiagnosed concern due to the fact that the oil leak is just above the filter and then runs down directly onto it thus making it appear that it is leaking.
Engine Oil Leak Technical Service Bulletin
I decided to check for Technical service bulletins for engine oil leaks, and yes I found one. Guess what, Chrysler and Jeep know about the problem with the 5.2L, 5.9 L and 3.9 L Chrysler engines that are installed in Dodge and Jeep trucks and off road vehicles.
The filter adapter and plate are experiencing warping conditions on older model units starting in 94 and 95. The procedure to check the adapter plate for warping is to remove it and lay it on a flat surface. If you are going to use a wood surface like a workbench then check it with a straight edge first to make sure it really is flat.
You then take .008-inch feeler gauge and try to stick it between the sealing edge of the adapter plate and the surface. If the feeler gauge slips in between the two while lightly pushing down on it, then the warped plate needs replacing.
It is just about impossible to see the warp with the naked eye. So you have to remove the part and follow the procedure. This is how we verify the part needs replacing. Now that we know about the problem we stop and check the adapter plate before screwing on the replacement filter.
This saves us the embarrassment of a comeback after an oil change. Since this engine and vehicle combination are extremely popular and millions of these vehicles are still operating on the road. I decided to share with you this story and also about the technical service bulletin that applies to this engine oil leak repair. Give this car oil leaks page a bookmark or share with a friend messing up your driveway.
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