Go Back   Subaru Impreza Forum - WRX STI Rally Performance Tuning > Subaru Impreza Technical Area > Engine Bay

Subaru Impreza Forum

Oil Leak: Head or Cam Cover Gasket?
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 12 Feb 2014, 11:02 AM   #1 (permalink)
Fresh Scooby
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 3
Oil Leak: Head or Cam Cover Gasket?

I don't actually own a scooby but my son in Canada does and his scooby has just sprung an oil leak which drops very small amounts, almost imperceptible, on the manifold and you can smell it.

He took it to a garage who told him that it was a head gasket failure but they didn't a carry out a combustion gas test on the coolant and he says there is no mayo on the oil filler cap and no chocolate milk shake on the dip stick. The car doesn't show any signs of overheating and there are no coolant leaks. Oil levels hardly drop and the coolant level is OK.

My reaction is that this is not a head gasket failure but a cam cover oil seal leak. But what do I know, I drive a Peugeot 406 V6 coupe! Can a knowledgeable scooby owner help me to advise my son whether the garage is trying to rip him off deliberately because he knows nothing about engines, unwittingly because they know about the bad head gasket situation in these engines and have jumped to a wrong conclusion or perhaps they are spot on and a mere oil leak weeping from that area is a sign that the gasket is on its last legs.

If it is the head gasket and it's only an oilway leak, would re torquing the head stop it?

Other areas needing advice are; if one of the heads has to come off, is it best practice to do them both and the cam belt/water pump at the same time; does the engine have to come out to do one head/both heads; ditto for changing the cam cover seals?

Can anyone advise me urgently? Thanks
Offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12 Feb 2014, 12:32 PM   #2 (permalink)
Super Moderator
Paid & Proud
Tidgy's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Nottingham
Posts: 18,743
Re: Oil Leak: Head or Cam Cover Gasket?

It sound like rocker cover gasket to me, typical symptoms of drivers side weeping.

If the heads come off them pretty much into full rebuild teritory, but i suspect its as above
PM, Squirrels best friend, cream egg king and resident .org spam tart/Perv
Offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12 Feb 2014, 12:38 PM   #3 (permalink)
Fresh Scooby
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 3
Re: Oil Leak: Head or Cam Cover Gasket?

Thanks for the prompt response. Like you I felt that a rocker or cam cover gasket was much more likely to drop oil and oil alone than a head gasket. How complicated is the renewal of the cam cover oil seal? Is there more than merely unscrewing it, removing it and then putting in a new seal and bolting it back? I know that on my V6 engine, the complete inlet manifold has to come off to do some simple jobs on the rear bank! Is it easier on the scooby?
Offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14 Feb 2014, 09:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
Fresh Scooby
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: southampton
Posts: 16
Re: Oil Leak: Head or Cam Cover Gasket?

also sounds like rocker cover gasket to me too i did have this problem.
Offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14 Feb 2014, 09:32 PM   #5 (permalink)
Fresh Scooby
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 3
Re: Oil Leak: Head or Cam Cover Gasket?

Second garage says that it can see oil seepage along the block/cylinder-head joint and thinks it is a minor degrading of the head gasket but nothing that is going to mix oil/coolant/exhaust gases. Looks like its bad news but the least bad news and my son may just PX it for a new one before it gets any worse. Car's 12 years old so it's not economic to pay a garage to change the gasket for what the car is worth. Sometimes you nee to know when to let go.

Thanks for the advice. If anyone ever needs info on 406 Coupe you'd be welcome at: 406 Coupe Club
Offline   Reply With Quote


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
roker cover gasket phillthomas Engine Bay 2 18 Jun 2012 06:22 PM
head gasket. manifold gasket? or something else? fiveskin Subaru Impreza Discussions 4 11 May 2012 09:30 AM
Valve cover / Rocker cover gasket Sanklaon Engine Bay 4 03 Apr 2010 06:14 PM
rocker cover gasket help needed garrrymac Engine Bay 3 30 Mar 2010 08:14 PM
cam cover gasket ? ter_red Technical General 2 10 Apr 2007 09:13 AM

All times are GMT. The time now is 09:45 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2 © 2011, Crawlability, Inc.