3 Quarts in 2 weeks????

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  #1  
Old 09-10-04, 05:17 PM
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3 Quarts in 2 weeks????

Hello all. Basically this post is for my daughters car.It is a 1994 Buick Century, with a 6 cyl. 3.4 engine. It has about 150K miles on it. SHe is away at college and I got this info. through her over instant messsenger, so I have not personally observed this symptom...... She is telling me that her car has used 3 quarts of oil in 2 weeks. At first she told me that it wasn't leaking, so, I said it must be smoking like a chimney, no to that also. (Me scratching head). O.K. who is checking the oil? A friend is doing it. Does he know what he is doing? Questionable..... So after a quick tutorial on how to check the oil, I told her to keep a eye out for puddles under the car after stops. Well she now is saying that she is seeing oil puddles under the car........ My question is, what, in your opinion, would leak oil at that volume? THe first thing that comes to my mind is rear main seal, but, thats quite a bit for that I would think. I'm not sure if this car would have issues with camshaft seals or not?? Maybe someone that has dealt with this engine would know better? Anybody care to hazard a guess on this one?
 
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  #2  
Old 09-10-04, 05:33 PM
McDann
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Has the oil been change recently? Possible loose drain plug or improperly installed oil filter?

A leaking oil pressure switch could also cause this large of a leak.
I have also seen leaking front and rear main seals that would literally pour oil.

At any rate she needs to have this car checked immediately. Hopefully the problem is will be easy to correct.
 
  #3  
Old 09-11-04, 01:15 PM
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Yes, thats one thing that she keeps up on. She has been having the quickie-lube places doing it I guess. She really needs to keep running it so I told her above all to keep checking the oil at least a couple times/week. I talked with a mechanic friend today at work and he suggested a loose oil filter where the pressure would be the greatest or maybe the sending unit. It would seem to me that a seal leak would come on gradually but I'm not sure....... We were going to go down this weekend and take a look at it, but, it looks like we will wait until next weekend now. It's got me curious as to what is really going on.
 
  #4  
Old 09-11-04, 04:20 PM
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Check for a leak on the drivers side under the throttle body.There is a device that drives the oil pump and the o-ring goes bad and they puke oil.Most folks confuse it with a bad rear main.
 
  #5  
Old 09-12-04, 08:49 AM
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Great info. Davo. That's the kind of thing I was looking for. I figured that one of you guys might have came across this sort of a problem before. Now its just a matter of getting a look at it, (she is 3 hours away). I'd tell her to take it to a garage, but , the money is tight and if its something that I can do then all the better.
 
  #6  
Old 09-19-04, 06:15 PM
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O.K., I got a look at the leak today and it is right where you said it was Davo. On the drivers side underneath where the thermostat housing is. It is a hard place to get a good look at , but, It is definitely coming from there. I'm not sure if its between the intake manifold and the engine block or if its around that round cover next to it??? She is bringing it home either next weekend or the one after so I want to be ready. Could you narrow this down a little more as to what I will need for parts??? Thanx for your help thus far.
 
  #7  
Old 09-21-04, 03:49 AM
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the round cover you are reffering to is an oil pump drive and is a shaft with a gear on the bottom which runs off the cam and turns the oil pump and is usually what is leaking.
it uses an oring that gets hard and flat overtime and starts leaking you usually have to remove the throttlebody and sometimes some fuel lines to gain access to remove the drive, im assuming it isn't a 3.4 as stated in your first post and is either 3.1, 3.3 or a 3.8 as the 3.4 requires the rear cylinder head to be pulled to be able to remove the oil pump drive and is a very big job something that I would recomend seeing a shop for.
you can also use an old small block chevy distributer gasket on the oil pump drive they tend to hold up better than the oring.
 
  #8  
Old 09-21-04, 01:34 PM
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Yes bejay, it is a 3.1 liter engine, I guess I was thinking about the Venture Van that the wife has, it has the 3.4 L. I hope that is all it is is that "o" ring. I might be able to change it without taking too much off, but, I won't know for sure until I get into it some. Thanks for the input.
 
  #9  
Old 09-21-04, 02:44 PM
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Make sure she stops frequently to check the oil on the drive home adding as needed so the engine doesn't get damaged on the 3 hour drive.You will have to work a little to get the oil pump drive up out of the block they stick in there.You should get a new throttle body gasket along with the o-ring in case it breaks when the throttle body is removed.If you get the o-ring at a dealer it has been updated and I have never had one come back yet.
 
  #10  
Old 09-21-04, 05:30 PM
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Yes Davo, its just like that song the Dixie Chicks sing where the daughter drives off and the father says "check the oil".LOL...... I made sure Sunday that she do it daily. One thing I didn't realize was that there is a shaft underneath that cover. I figured it was just a cover and I could slip an "o" ring in there and tighten it up. Now it appears as though I'll have to remove the throttle body in order to get that ring out. Nothing ever as easy as it seems when it comes to engines I guess. I won't chance using the old throttle body gasket, I'll just get a new one. And maybe see about getting the gasket that bejay mentioned as well.........I know what you mean bejay about the 3.4L, we had an intake manifold gasket replaced on that right after we bought it and it took the mechanic a whole day to do it. While he was in there we had him replace the spark plugs. How in the heck do you get them in there without partially removing the engine?? We had them put the platinum ones in so we should be good for a while.
 
  #11  
Old 10-03-04, 05:21 PM
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O.K., I had a chance to work on the Buick today and I tried and failed to get that "O" ring changed. I just couldn't seem to get enough room to get at it. I did manage to get the clamp thing undone, but, I couldn't seem to get the cover off. If I tackle it again I'm going at it for sure with an intake manifold gasket as well as the throttle body gasket on hand, then I can disassemble it enough to really get down to business. There is no doubt that is where the leak is because I sprayed it down with some cleaner and I could see it oozing out.

Does anyone have a miracle cure that they can access this little cover with???
 
  #12  
Old 10-03-04, 07:56 PM
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try using a pair of pliers or vicegrips clamped on the top of the drive and try turning it first after getting it to turn, then try appling some upper pressure while turning it. once you get it up a little you can usually use a prybar under neath it to help remove it.
after removing the throttle body and fuel inlet and return lines from fuel rail and laying them aside it isnt that difficult to remove, the part is about 6 inches long and would hit the throttlebody before you would ever be able to remove it to change the o ring if you was attempting to somehow work around it, you cant. also when you reinstall it make sure it is all the way down and engaged into the oil pump it should be touching the block.
 
  #13  
Old 10-04-04, 04:26 PM
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Well as it turns out we got it done by the guy that we bought the car from originally........ I had seen him a couple of days prior as I was getting ready to buy the gaskets and he claimed that he has never taken the intake manifold or the throttle body off to gain access to the shaft cover. Well I decided to try to do it without removal and well you know that part of the story...... So, I had the wife call him this A.M. and he said he could do it between jobs. $40.00 later and its sitting in my driveway all done. He couldn't have removed those other parts and done it that quick, so he must have a tried and true method of making that repair. And it definitely isn't leaking because I checked it after we got home and its clean as a whistle. What do you make of that?
 
  #14  
Old 10-05-04, 03:00 AM
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it doesnt take long to remove 2 fuel lines and the throttle body which is only held on by 2 bolts if hes familiar with the job it should of only took about 45 minutes. the intake wouldnt have to be removed.
 
  #15  
Old 10-05-04, 02:56 PM
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You do not need to remove the intake but you can't change the o-ring without throttle body removal.Bejay is correct 45 mins would be enough time.
 
  #16  
Old 10-05-04, 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by bejay
it doesnt take long to remove 2 fuel lines and the throttle body which is only held on by 2 bolts if hes familiar with the job it should of only took about 45 minutes. the intake wouldnt have to be removed.

I guess your idea and mine of what a throttle body is, is quite different. From my perspective the throttle body is where the air horn (duct) is connected which would supply air to the respective cylinders. From what I've seen there is at least a dozen (10 mm wrench size) bolts that hold it on. Not to mention on the left rear where the alternator is bolted on. The only thing I see is the part where the throttle cables hook on, that is only held by a couple, maybe 3 bolts. Is that what you mean?
The part that is really in the way is the thermostat housing. If that weren't there it would be easy access from what I can see. Of course the exhaust manifold running across there to doesn't help much either.
 
  #17  
Old 10-06-04, 02:33 AM
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all the bolts that you are reffering to would go to the upper intake manifold the throttlebody does bolt to the upper intake its called a throttlebody cause that is where the throttle plate is located that opens when you apply the gas pedal to increase engine speed.
 
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