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Old 05-06-2014, 10:22 AM
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Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

Took my '06 in for a oil change. I use a blend at JiffyLube and drove the typical 4-5k miles on it. Pit guys there said I was 1Q low and have a small leak somewhere (which the don't bother locating for some reason). Also there is a possible leak at the TCase, maybe around the seal. TCase they weren't too worried about as it was really nothing and I haven't seen any fluid under my jeep in that spot. I DO see some spots under the engine near the front in my driveway, though, which is starting to concern me.

Anybody have experience with leaking engine oil? 68k miles on the jeep. I realize it's on '06, but I consider this to be "low" mileage for its age.

Also, the engine coolant reservoir was EMPTY. I've always had to add a bit of coolant to the box here and there but this time it was pretty much bone dry. The radiator had plenty fluid in it and the cap was starting to show signs of corrosion, so they guy recommended a flush, which I agreed to since it's never been done. I know I should check here first before doing anything JiffyLube "recommends," but this seemed like the right thing to do. I usually am pretty good at telling them what to do with their maintenance fluid recommendations... Dash gauge for engine temp has never given me reason to worry either.
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Old 05-06-2014, 10:54 AM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

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Originally Posted by Kayak83 View Post
Took my '06 in for a oil change. I use a blend at JiffyLube and drove the typical 4-5k miles on it. Pit guys there said I was 1Q low and have a small leak somewhere (which the don't bother locating for some reason). Also there is a possible leak at the TCase, maybe around the seal. TCase they weren't too worried about as it was really nothing and I haven't seen any fluid under my jeep in that spot. I DO see some spots under the engine near the front in my driveway, though, which is starting to concern me.

Anybody have experience with leaking engine oil? 68k miles on the jeep. I realize it's on '06, but I consider this to be "low" mileage for its age.

Also, the engine coolant reservoir was EMPTY. I've always had to add a bit of coolant to the box here and there but this time it was pretty much bone dry. The radiator had plenty fluid in it and the cap was starting to show signs of corrosion, so they guy recommended a flush, which I agreed to since it's never been done. I know I should check here first before doing anything JiffyLube "recommends," but this seemed like the right thing to do. I usually am pretty good at telling them what to do with their maintenance fluid recommendations... Dash gauge for engine temp has never given me reason to worry either.
Engine model is critical for this type of question.
e.g. 68K miles with the 4.0 six, and NOT having mild oil leaks would be unusual. Most are the valve cover gasket and are commonly misdiagnosed as rear seal.

No offense, but JiffyLube?! Worse, diagnosis of anything more complicated than light bulbs from JiffyLube?!

Don't any local dealers offer express oil changes for the same or even less money?

A cooling system flush won't fix a leaking system. It might make it worse, or it could be that you have a very slow leak and have simply neglected to keep an eye on the overflow level.

How long has it been since you checked all your hoses, water pump, and the input/output connections on your radiator? The plastic tanks can develop small cracks at the drain, but more typically at the inlet/outlets. Any hose you can easily crush [unless you are Hulk Hogan] is getting too old.

You can dye the radiator, but most radiator shops will want to pressure test it...

Oil leaks are a bugger to find until you get lucky. It helps to start with a real good
pressure wash [cover your electronics and air intakes] where you get up underneath, under hood, etc. and remove all old gunk so you can hopefully see new build up. You can get dye for the crankcase as well.

1 quart low in 5K miles is nothing. You may not even have a leak worth worrying about.

Make sure you are replacing with the factory specified coolant type. With a well cleaned engine, mark the coolant bottle and keep a close eye on it. Some variation in fill level isn't abnormal, but after setting overnight it should be pretty close all the time. If you dye the coolant, check it with a UV light when it is dark and see... but you also want to check the water pump for "weeping" coolant, check all places where hoses connect for wet looks that smell like coolant. Look under the radiator for any signs of greasy looking wetness. Pray it isn't your heater core...

Same for oil leaks. Look along the back of the cylinder bank(s) for oily wetness, along the back of the engine, underneath.
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Old 05-06-2014, 11:19 AM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

Sorry, forgot to post the engine. 4.7L. Should be in my sig anyway.

As for jiffylube...an oil change is pretty simple. I have heard "stories" of these oil garages botching jobs before but honestly I have never had an issue. I won't let them touch anything more detailed than that though. Flushing the radiator didn't seem like a horrible idea, especially since the jeep is nearly 8 years old. I'm gonna keep an eye on it now to see how the fluid level goes. I hadn't remembered to check the coolant level is much too long, so shame on me for that. It's usually just below the "add" line once a year, which seems OK to me.

At 8 years old, I imagine I'm going to have some seals that are beginning to wear out. Been meaning to take a look at my belt too. Just at that age I think.

The engine oil "leak," concerned me the most obviously. Although you are the 2nd person to tell me that 1Q after that many miles isn't a big concern. I might put some cardboard under it (if it stops raining) and see what kind of leak is going on.

I'm also due for a new PCV (idle seems jumpy lately) and EGR, both of which I have the parts for in my office. So I might need to finally not put off that trip to my mechanic. Let him poke around there are see what's what. Just wanted to gather some opinions from Jeep owners with Jeep experience before a mechanic dives in. I don't wanna keep throwing money into it. My $3,500 rear differential 2 years ago was enough for my pocketbook for a while. At a certain point I can justify buying a new car to the wifey.
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Old 05-06-2014, 05:27 PM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

Jeep goes in the shop tomorrow to take a look around and see what's going on. Got home today and noticed a good drip happening at the front diff guard around the cut out for it. Fluid is mostly clear, tinted brownish. Not very oily in my opinion. Not sure what it is.



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Old 05-07-2014, 11:45 AM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

If anybody cares, (I might be talking to myself here) my mechanic just told me that my water pump is leaking and thats why my coolant was out. He didn't find an oil leak. Although the money I just spent on the radiator flush is wasted. Might go bend somebody's ear over at Jiffy Lube now...

$400 fix.
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Old 05-07-2014, 11:59 AM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

I'd power wash that entire area, and as best you can from above.
Just because you see "oilish" there doesn't mean that is where it came from, it looks more like that just happens to be the lowest point in the area so whatever is leaking would be expected to gather there.

You should be able to "sniff test" it to figure out if it is oxidized engine oil, differential oil, boiled coolant, etc. If yer mechanic is friendly, ask them to sniff test it and let you do so as well so you learn what the various liquids smell like.

If you don't regularly pressure wash your undercarriage, that accumulation may be from a long enough duration you don't really care.

If you can afford a small washer, they make bent arms that make it a heck of a lot easier to get underneath....or you can just wear really old clothing at the nearest coin op and bend down.
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Old 05-07-2014, 12:03 PM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

I trust him. Been going there for years with multiple cars.

He said its being sprayed all over hell down there and mixing in with grime/oil under there. Explains what i saw yesterday. Not quite oil, not quite coolant looking fluid. I'll keep an eye on it after that. But one thing is for sure, the pump needs to replaced anyway.

I'm ok with spending $400ish here and there one/twice a year as opposed to a new car payment. Geriatric care at 68k miles bothers me, though. Keeping my options open.
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Old 05-07-2014, 12:10 PM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

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Originally Posted by Kayak83 View Post
I trust him. Been going there for years with multiple cars.

He said its being sprayed all over hell down there and mixing in with grime/oil under there. Explains what i saw yesterday. Not quite oil, not quite coolant looking fluid. I'll keep an eye on it after that. But one thing is for sure, the pump needs to replaced anyway.

I'm ok with spending $400ish here and there one/twice a year as opposed to a new car payment. Geriatric care at 68k miles bothers me, though. Keeping my options open.
I put about $600 into a few preventative items at about 70K on an older ZJ and then pretty much nothing but tires, rancho shocks, aftermarket exhaust, valve cover gasket, oil pressure sensor, aftermarket water pump [hesco] for the next 130K.

68K isn't a spring chicken any more, and if you KEEP the thing like new with regular checks, cleaning, preventative items, it will last till the wheels roll off...

Let it get behind on regular fluid swaps/checks, cleaning, etc. and you can have a money pit on your hands...
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Old 05-07-2014, 12:13 PM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

Tires in the Fall for sure.

My $3,500 new rear diff. 2 years ago really put a kink in my Jeep's quality assurance.
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Old 05-07-2014, 05:00 PM
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Re: Engine Oil Leak & Coolant Dry

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Originally Posted by Kayak83 View Post
Tires in the Fall for sure.

My $3,500 new rear diff. 2 years ago really put a kink in my Jeep's quality assurance.
What happened to your rear diff that it needed to be changed?
Waterpump is quite common on these engines. And regarding the 1 Qt down on the engine oil, that is not bad. I had to change the valve stem seals at 170K km, because it was burning almost 1 Qt every 1000 km.
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