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1997 Volvo 960 Question: Oil is leaking under my car on passenger side /smoking under hood

 

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erinjohn01, 2.9L 6 Cylinder, Universal City, TX, November 10, 2010, 09:31
 Rookie

OIL LEAKING-under car passenger side-smoke under hood=was told try replace head gasket or valve cover gasket- what do you recomend? Very limited funds had gotten breast cancer again- back to work recently- All I have been able to afford so far is keep putting oil in it and we tryed couple cans of sealant- leak not as bad as before, but I want to stop it completley....What about the $35 can of sealant you can buy i saw it on youtube - blue devil or red devil? My dad just got me this car becuz my 94 Buick started having too many problems- he knew funds would be limited again--Other than oil leak , i love this car!!

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  • Answer #1

    mastertech6371 November 10, 2010, 09:38
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     Master

    no sealer will work for you. it is temporary at best. could be the valve cover but you need someone to tell you the exact issue. it is dangerous driving it as it is a fire risk.
    get it checked. it may not be as major as you think.

    Roy

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    ZeeTech November 10, 2010, 10:13
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     Master

    It does not have a valve cover. This cylinder head have two halves, to remove the top half will requires some special tools and anaerobic sealer material.
    Replace the oil filler cap's rubber seal, it gets rock hard and won't seal anymore, therefor oil leaks to under the spark plug cover and out at the other side.
    Also check the following:
    - remove flame trap housing (PCV) and see if the trap (a round plastic part with lots of holes on it) installed. If so, remove the screen and discard it. It does not have to be installed, there is a TSB for it.
    Don't put more stop leak in it, it could clog the breather/oil separator assembly and just makes the situation worst. Try these things first and see what happens.

    Zee

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    Bret Bodas, November 12, 2010, 08:53
     Master

    Great answer Zee. You obviously have spent some time working on Volvos.
    Hey Erinjohn, follow Zee's advice, but also try to have someone tell you exactly where the oil leak is coming from, it's not likely the gaskets you mentioned.

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    ZeeTech, November 12, 2010, 10:16
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     Master

    Thanks Bret. I had my share of Volvos and I like to work on them, at least while they where really Volvos.
    The most common leaks on those where the oil cap seal, the filter housing O-rings and the seal ring behind the breather/oil separator box. I use to have a collections of the wrongly installed (squeezed out) seal rings. Someone in the factory forgot to lubricate it and instead of sliding in, it just twisted out. However it's under the intake manifold, which is on the left (driver) side.
    The best thing would be is to degrease the whole engine and re-inspect it.
    BTW, it's hard to kill those inline 6 engines as long as they get oil and coolant - they are reliable.

    Zee

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    Visitor, November 12, 2010, 20:55

    Thanks Guys, This is Erin - I appreciate all yalls help I went to a "Christian" Gene Brown Transmission and they said $1000.00m, after my tears they knocked off 200.00 , but this is what he said :
    Valve Cover Gaskeet repace......Labor 80.00 hr...............$640.00
    .sealant inaerobic...........................21.15
    R&r pcb collection box................40.00
    pcb box ......................32.50
    oil 5w30.........6 cans....................$4.00
    oil filter......................1..................$13.39
    oil filter replace .............1 ............24.00

    total: $802.54

    does this sound right to yall?

    $92.00 in parts and all the rest in labor....are they being fair?

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    ZeeTech, November 13, 2010, 05:24
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     Master

    I hope more Volvo expert will chime in. I believe Bret is a Volvo master tech, let's wait for his opinion also, meanwhile let me tell you mine.
    No, it doesn't sound right to me. It's hard to tell without looking at your car, but based on my experience you will pay a bunch of money and won't get much done. Let me tell you why:
    -Why do you take your car to a transmission shop? Find a Volvo specialty shop.
    -I never (in 10+ years working on Volvos) had to reseal the upper head due to an oil leak only, unless the engine was badly overheated. There is NO VALVE COVER!

    Here, I copied it from the Volvo's Shop Manual:
    The valve cover for this engine is actually the upper half of the cylinder head. For more information refer to Cylinder Head. See: Cylinder Head Assembly\Description and Operation

    -where are the new cam seals and timing belt from the estimate? They all has to come out if they want to replace the "valve cover".

    -there are no other parts listed, only the separator box, BUT it will need hoses, connecting sleeve for the oil sep.box, clamps, I like to replace the intake manifold gasket at the head, because it quite often cracks and leaks at cyl.# 1.
    -at this age the intake connection sleeves (6 pcs. of short rubber hoses) might be rock hard and also needs to be replaced with 12pcs of squeeze style clamps.
    -since the fuel rail is out, I would not reinstall it without new upper and lower fuel injector seal rings.
    This seems to be a bogus estimate. These guys are no way to be a Volvo experts and they don't even do their "home work".

    What you need is:
    -degrease the engine, get rid off all the oil, otherwise you won't know where the leak is coming from exactly. Remove the plastic cover above the ignition coils, remove the coils and clean that area very well. Replace the OIL FILLER COVER"S SEAL RING. It's only few bucks and that's where the oil leaks under the plastic cover and runs down at the right side.
    -remove the PCV flame trap from the housing and discard. Replace the vacuum hose between the PCV and the manifold and clean its ports - it's important. Remove the front timing cover, check cam and crank seals for leaks - check the water pump also for leaks since you are already there.
    -Check the rear cam seals, if they are leaks, oil can run down the bell housing and you would think it's a rear main seal leak.
    -Check the oil filter housing / oil cooler assembly. It leaks quite often, There are 3 O-rings, 2 large and a small one, replace them.
    Get the breather/oil separator box and the other required parts replaced on the intake manifold, as I suggested above.
    Do yourself a favor, pick up your car from that shop and just drive away! Find a Volvo expert or good european specialty shop with Volvo experience and let them do it.
    Now you now what and how it has to be done, see if they will tell you the same.
    If they know Volvos, their answer will be the same.
    Update us, please.

    Zee

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    Visitor, November 28, 2010, 07:54

    WELL HELLO ALL YALL GUYS! IM AM SO HAPPY I DONT KNOW IF WE ACTUALLY GOT IT FIXED ON OUR OWN OR ITS A MIRACLE *** I TEND TO BELIEVE THE 2ND, AS YALL KNOW IM A TWO-TIME BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR -- WHO BY DR ACCNTS I SHOULDNT BE HEAR, I WAS TOLD WHEN I WAS 18 I WOULD NEVER WALK AGAIN, THATS WHEN I WAS IN TEHRAN,IRAN....SORRY FOR THE RAMBLING , BUT ZEE , YOU GUYS CHECK THIS OUT - MY HUSBAND PICKED UP SOME "JB WELD" FOR LIKE $4 OR $5 DOLLARS- WE ARE NOW GOING ON A WEEK NO MORE OIL LEAKS....I WAS GOING THRU ABOUT 1 QUART BOTTLE OF OIL A DAY , NO MORE -- TOLD YALL I WOULD LET YOU KNOW WHAT HAPPENED , SO FAR I AM THRILLED--NO OIL LEAKING ANYWHERE!!!! JUST WANTED TO SHARE WITH YOU GUYS AND THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL YALLS HELP AND EXPERTISE INFO.....HERE IS A WEBSITE I FOUND FOR YALL - IT IS CALLED DRIVEWIRE.COM IT IS A PARTS LOCATION...WHEN I FIRST GOT MY 97 VOLVO THE HEADLIGHTS WEN OUT AFTER THE FIRST WEEK...

    CALLED AROUND NEW HEADLIGHT SWICH AUTO ZONE $140.00
    O'REILLY $120.00
    I CALLED SOME VOLVO PLACE AND IT WAS ABOUT $100.00 I THINK
    WELL......I DID SOME MAJOR PRAYING , GOOGLED LOW PRICE VOLVO PARTS AND UP POPPED DRIVEWIRE.COM AND THE PART I BOUGHT WAS LIKE $43.00 FREE SHIPPING I HAD IT IN 2 DAYS....HERE IT IS BYE GUYS AND THANKS SO MUCH AGAIN...MERRY CHRISTMAS!

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    ZeeTech, November 28, 2010, 17:34
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     Master

    Thank you very much for the update. I'm glad the problem is fixed. Sometimes you just have to let your husband to do the job.
    Where was the oil coming from?
    I hope it will be permanent. Anyway, if there is a problem, you know where to find us. : )
    Enjoy your Volvo and Merry Christmas for you too.

    Zee

    Zee

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    Visitor, November 28, 2010, 17:46

    Thanks Zee,
    for all yalls help....have you ever heard of something that was leaking that bad - and just using the "JB WELD" I was just so shocked that i thought those "honest guys" were gonna help me ...yeah, help me take $800.00 out of my wallet, I hate to say it but that really pisses me off, that those guys could take advantage -- and dont you know it if I had been by myself that day , i guarantee you I would have just taken there word for it --- I always had heard of car repair guys screwing over women, now I totally believe it. Im just glad i found yall -- Where are all yall located...Im in Texas anybody down here? I have recomended yalls site to everyone I talk to and I do talk alot as you can tell...We will be back , oh I forgot this is an ez one Zee,,, that brakelight on my back windshield of the station wagon - the cover fell off somewhere we havent found it ....what it the official name of that piece so I can go to drive wire and see if i can get the cover.....bye yall
    Erin
    San Antonio,Texas

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    ZeeTech, November 28, 2010, 17:53
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     Master

    That's called 3rd brake light cover trim.

    Zee

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    Visitor, November 28, 2010, 17:55

    Thanks Zee - Yall have a good one!.....Erin

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