Causes of Leaking Oil Pan PDF Print E-mail

Dear Barbara,

My car’s oil pan is leaking. How did this happen? Did the mechanic that changed my car oil the last time do something wrong?



Hi Willy,

There are several causes for the ole oil pan to start leaking. The most common are the pan gasket, drain plug, or a simple crack in the pan caused by age or rust. Be sure to locate the exact cause of the leak before replacing the oil pan or oil pan gasket. Check the pan bolts and tighten if they are loose. You might want to then clean all of the oil from the bottom of the engine and see if tightening the bolts stopped the leak. On a clean engine, the leaks show up close to the leaky areas.

When replacing the pan gaskets, if need be, always remember to use a thread lock on the hold-down bolts. This will prevent the bolt from backing out when the gasket compresses.

Thanks for writing in,