98 Stratus Oil leak (Massive)

buzzstpoint

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Picked up a beater car for my son (500)
1998 dodge Stratus.
2.0L engine 5 speed manual transmission

Car is real clean and body in nice condition. Drive real smooth and no odd sounds from the engine.
How ever
It has a massive oil leak.
How massive? I put in 3 quarts of oil to top it off, drove it home on the highway about 20 miles. By the time I got home ( I live right off the interstate) the oil light came on when I hit the exit. It's empty. Won't even show on the dipstick.
We even had to stop to clean my wifes windshield on the way home. Like I said, Massive. At least the underside wont rust :ROFL

Not sure where it's coming from yet, as I haven't jacked it up and looked.
My 1st thought was, rear main seal. But a quick look doesn't show a lot of oil from that area. Something on the "Backside" of the engine.
I've read the head gasket can blow oil out.
Or as per the guy I bought it from, (has a lien listed on the title, So I refused the title. (But he found the lien release)) He said at that time now all the oil I put in will leak out if it just sits there. Which tells me that it wouldn't be the head, more like oil pan...
I know a little early, but just wondering on ideas if you all came across massive oil leaks on these Chrysler 2.0L engines.
 

kev2

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think positive...

little things- valve cover gasket.. oil filter adapter to block O ring.. oil filter O ring missing OR 2 are there...
this is a 'extermal oil pump' - clean it up and let us know--
 

JackC

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Reminds me of the '72 chev Nova, 350 I bought for almost nothing years ago. The guy had oil bottles lined up along the driveway, it leaked so much. Thought it was the rear main that I was prepared to replace and all it was only the oil sending unit was broken. $5.

Hope you are that lucky
 

billr

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Since the old owner said it would leak out just sitting there, let's hope it's something real apparent and easy to fix, like punctured oil pan or stripped drain-plug.
 

Jim Fairbanks

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My first thought was the oil sending unit...I have had many of those leak causing a pretty bad oil leak...but since it leaks just sitting I agree with Bill...almost has to be something like a hole in the oil pan or a stripped drain plug...Jim
 

Cheef

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This is most likely a head gasket or sender if leaking from rear. Sender is easy to eyeball. I have seen them lose their seal and leak quick. A 1998 had a organic head gasket from the factory and are notorious for leaking from upper driver side area where the oil feed is located in the block and head. Update with a multi-layer steel head gasket kit from dealer. Has everything you need for about $140 except for the can of steel gasket spray which is about $8 from dealer also. This is an intermediate-level shade-tree mechanic project. Some special tools and attention to detail on cleaning and torquing procedures.
 

greasemonkey

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Like Cheef said the most common leaks are the oil pressure sender and the head gasket. If you replace the headgasket make sure you replace it with a mulilayered metal gasket like Cheef said and apply the sealant spray to gasket. Have also seen the oil plugs fall out of the rear head there was a recall on this for that reason and the fix was to install a plate to keep the oil plugs from falling out. Good luck HTH Greasemonkey :)
 

buzzstpoint

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Ok, It's not the head gasket or oil sending unit.

It's something in the timing cover.
I'm not sure if it's the front seal (inner?) or the oil pump itself.

Kinda hard to see from the picture, but the oil really pours out. If you look at the lower bolt, Thats not oil leaking down the oil pan, thats an actual stream of oil running out.




Now, if you look at the top most bolt, Right where the belt is covering the black plastic cover, right behind there, is one spot where the oil seems to be leaking out.
So, I'm guessing either there's a crank seal, or the oil pump is shot.
Here's another thing. It will also leak around that spot when you add oil to the engine, (engine off).

Another possibility I was thinking was the Cam sensor. But I dont think it's leaking that far up.
 

Mobile Dan

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Odd combination of symptoms. Two guesses.

1. Valve cover leaks over by timing belt cover. If you add oil, it runs across the baffle inside the valve cover and then leaks out the hole.

2. Oil is leaking from oil pump gasket. When you add oil, the rising oil in the pickup tube creates enough pressure in the oil pump housing to push out oil that is trapped in there.

It sucks that this engine has the rear timing belt cover to block you view even if the front timing belt cover is removed.

Can't be the cam sensor...it's on the other end of the engine.

A look at the head gasket shows that the way oil drains back into the block from the head is not very close to the timing belt...so that would not be a good guess.
 

billr

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I understand that it will leak as you add oil, but does it continue to leak until all the oil added is gone (engine not running); or is it only leaking as the oil is added, leaving most of the added oil in the pan? Can you fill the pan to the "full" mark and have it stay there, even though some is leaking as it is added? Again, all this with the engine not running.
 

buzzstpoint

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With engine off.
If I add oil, it will start dripping out around the same area. But slower.
Shortly after I start adding oil it will start to drip out. A minute or two after I stop adding oil the dripping will stop.
I can add it up to the full mark and it will stay. Until I start the engine.

Not sure if it will turn out.
Here is a video file I've uploaded. (Photobucket)
http://s12.photobucket.com/albums/a243/computervitals/Misc/?action=view&current=IMG_0005.mp4

About one minute into the video you can see upper left, then the right areas where the oil is starting to leak.
 

billr

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OK, since it will stay full, that pretty much rules out the easy ones like some leak from the pan... looks like the front of that thing is going to have to come open, no matter what it is.
 

NickD

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From that video, looks like that oil is coming from above. What gets hairy is trying to figure out why an engine is using a quart of oil every ten thousand miles. Leaks like this are easy. Son drives his S-10, turns off the key, then suddenly five quarts of oil drops all over my driveway. Finding and repairing that leak was easy. Cleaning up my driveway was not. Neither was cleaning myself, was tempted to toss myself into the trashcan.
 

kev2

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I think There is a Hydraulic* belt tensioner used on some models... that would be in the timing belt area..and as I posted that is the oil pump behind harmonic bal.

*Oil pressure
 
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