Significant Oil Leak - Source Help? - 99 SLK230 - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Significant Oil Leak - Source Help? - 99 SLK230

Hi everyone. I've been struggling to find this leak, and finally decided to clean up a bit today. After the first quick cleaning, I ran the car for 30 seconds, turned it off, and jacked it back up.

When I looked back under it, as you can see in the pictures, the oil seems to be running down the passenger's side of the oil pan. However, it's wet above that, as you can see a few drops above it, as well. Could this be the oil pan gasket, or is it very likely something above? If so, what is above that which could have a substantial leak?

Looking from the top down, without removing anything, doesn't seem to show anything.



Thanks!
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Last edited by LoveMeSomeSLK; 4 Weeks Ago at 11:40 AM.
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#2 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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#3 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Thought it might help if I gave some definite *nots*. It is not:
Oil filler
Oil filter
Valve Cover
Cam magnet

*I will update as any suggestions are made/I can verify anything.

I'm trying to rule in/out the crank pulley/harmonic balancer seal. It's located just above the front of the oil pan, so I'm assuming if this were my source, I'd see some dripping down the front of the oil pan? However, that's bone dry. All the oil is dripping down the passenger's side of the oil pan.
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#4 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Updating this thread, hoping someone may see it who knows these engines a bit better than I do.

I took it into my local shop (not Mercedes experts) just to get an opinion, and he said without knowing this engine, it could be where the head meets the block on the front passenger's side or the oil pan gasket.

I also found this thread, which seems to be identical to my issue, but no resolution was ever posted. https://www.benzworld.org/forums/w20...nger-side.html

Any help or suggestions/guesses are still very appreciated.
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If it was me, I'd buy a couple of cans of brake parts cleaner and give it a thorough clean, starting from the top and working my way down. If you still can't trace it after that, there are UV dye systems available but having never used one, I would'nt like to comment on their useage/effectiveness
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#6 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Hi,

I am "4 cylinder challenged", that is to say I very rarely see the 4 pot MB Engines and have done very little with them, so I am not full conversant with exactly what is where

However, if this came in to me for Diagnosis, I would be stripping off as much as I could on the passenger side, (and try and do it so that the Engine will still start and run) so I can clearly see all the way from Valve Cover down to Sump ...........................

Clean it off thoroughly with Brake Cleaner etc, then run Engine until the leak source is evident

HTH, Cheers Dave
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#7 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Thanks for the replies! @M4rCu5, I cleaned it up and was able to trace the location to a specific area. It's directly above the oil pan on the passenger's side. The problem is my view is completely blocked from that area, so it seems like I'll need to start taking things off for a better view, as recommended by Dave2302.
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Originally Posted by LoveMeSomeSLK View Post
Thanks for the replies! @M4rCu5, I cleaned it up and was able to trace the location to a specific area. It's directly above the oil pan on the passenger's side. The problem is my view is completely blocked from that area, so it seems like I'll need to start taking things off for a better view, as recommended by Dave2302.
Quick question. Are you sure it's oil? If it smells funny it could be the supercharger leaking.
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#9 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Mn car guy, it's definitely oil. It'll leak about 5qts in about 3-5 days. Comes out just as clean as I put it in. Being such a massive leak, I was hoping the volume of oil might be another indicator of what it could be.
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#10 Old 3 Weeks Ago
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Hi,

That's not an Oil Leak , that's an "Exon Valdise/ Deepwater Horizon" type spillage ,

Couple of guesstimates .............

Oil Filter / Housing ?

Oil Pressure Light Switch ?

Cam Chain Tensioner ?

Oil Cooler ?

(remember I am 4 cylinder challenged so know nothing of where these bits may be located on this Engine)

Still advise stripping other bits off to confirm

HTH, Cheers Dave
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FWIW, I had a pretty significant oil leak on mine. Suspected the oil filter housing, but it turned out to be the oil cap that was seeping oil whenever the car was running (and resulting in pretty everything below the cap being covered in oil. The part is super cheap and you might want to change that anyway.
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#12 Old 3 Weeks Ago
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Thanks for the additional replies! Unfortunately, after more inspection yesterday, I can 100% rule out the oil cap, oil filter, oil filter housing, oil sensor, valve cover gasket, front seal, and rear seal.

I've had multiple people now refer me to the chain tensioner, which is located exactly in the area my oil is pouring out of. That's next on my list - but as soon as I can get a valve cover gasket, I want to check the two hex bolts under the timing cover, at the front and front right passenger side. There's a video on youtube that shows these coming loose and causing a decent leak on this engine. So those are my two best guesses at this point! For what it's worth, this is only a 40k mile car.
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#13 Old 3 Weeks Ago
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Well, not the tensioner. A snake cam with a light on it made easy work of that diagnosis. Not a drop coming from there. I'm guessing the only thing left to check is those bolts under the timing cover?
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