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Old 06-02-2010, 01:50 PM   #1
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Replacing rear oil main seal


I have a 2001 sunfire (front wheel drive) and have been trying to locate an oil leak. It may be the rear main seal. If this is the case I've read two different ways to fix rear main oil seals. The first sounds like a huge undertaking, requiring that the transaxle be remove, which requires the engine to be supported and everthing attached to the transaxle to be removed, the you can open up the oil pan and replace the circular gasket.
The other way I have seen is by using a gasket made of two semi circles and RTV silcone sealant, the transaxle doesnt have to be removed. Just put the two pieces around the hole, dab the RTV sealant where the gaskets meet and reinstall the pan. Can this 2-piece type gasket be used in place of a single piece gasket, or is the 2-piece only compatible with vehicles that originally only used 2-piece designs?
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Old 06-02-2010, 03:06 PM   #2
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Replacing rear oil main seal


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Originally Posted by wvphysics View Post
Can this 2-piece type gasket be used in place of a single piece gasket, or is the 2-piece only compatible with vehicles that originally only used 2-piece designs?
They are not interchangeable and you probably have a full one piece seal. Start by degreasing the engine, run it for a while, then do a thorough visual inspection. Start looking up high near the cam cover, intake, head then lower.
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Old 06-02-2010, 05:58 PM   #3
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Replacing rear oil main seal


Find a silicone sealant which is impervious to oil, then contact me. I'll make you an instant millionaire. ALL silicone's DO NOT stand up to oils well--PERIOD. The "RTV" stands for "Room Temperature Vulcanized", which literally means the silicone sets up at room temperature. It's a selling gimmick. I know, you are going to say you've seen mechanics use silicone's on motors to seal mating surfaces. I have also. Ask them how long this will last, long enough to get the customer back on the road. Some areas of a motor, those in which the oils do not actually contact the silicone all the time will last longer, thinks of putting an intake manifold on an older motor. The only way to solve your problem, IF it is the rear main oil seal, is to replace the seal with the proper seal, the proper way. I like short cuts also, but I like doing repairs just once even better. David
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Old 06-05-2010, 01:40 AM   #4
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Replacing rear oil main seal


the rear main seals engine oil where the crankshaft and flywheel meet. how you would seal that without pulling the transmission is just not possible. most FWD mains are also easy to screw up if you do not have the correct tool to install them. they have to be perfectly flat and tapped in. snap on makes a special tool that will make the job actually worth doing. nothing is worse than a new seal that doesn't seal due to mis-install
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