Buyers inspection revealed slight oil leak - Should I buy?

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by privi, Aug 4, 2019.

  1. privi

    privi New Member

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    I took the car I'm looking to buy from an auto dealer to a 3rd party mechanic. The inspection revealed a slight oil leak. Should this be a concern? This will be my first used car purchase.
     
  2. Pluggo

    Pluggo Active Member

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    Seeing an oil stain on the the engine is not necessarily a cause for concern. A bit of seepage is OK, some might even consider it normal. On the other hand, if the leak is bad enough to hit the ground after you park I would be more concerned. Also, some drips may get a whole lot worse once the engine is running at speed and the oil is under pressure. Are there signs of the oil drip spreading from its source onto remote parts of the engine or the undercarriage? That would be pretty bad, but even a bad leak is not a deal-breaker if the selling price is reduced by the amount that the repair would cost.
     
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  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    welcome!

    what was the mech's opinion?
     
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  4. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Needs more detail. A wet spot is nothing to worry about. Having to add 2 qts a day is a disaster. I’m certain this one is between those extremes, but the devil is in the details.
     
  5. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Titanic Social Director

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    Any more detail on where the oil leak is? Some possiblities:

    1. Valve cover. (Common, not that critical, easily remedied. Or ignored.)
    2. Timing chain cover. (A bit more problematic, can make a holy mess. Or it might be very minor amount, could be ingonered. Expensive to repair, around $1700.)
    3. Oil pan. (Can happen, if minor could be ignored. At least it's down near the bottom. Removal of oil pan, cleaning and application of a (liquid) form-in-place gasket is required. Relatively easy.)
    4. Drive shafts, where they come out of transaxle. (Not actually an "oil" leak, actually a transaxle fluid leak. Can be ignored if minor, but somewhat labour intensive to repair, maybe $500?)
    5. Oil pressures sensor. (On rear side of engine if I recall correctly.)

    Attached is info on oil pan reseal, and the oil pressure switch (plus a few others).
     
  6. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    It depends, of course, on WHERE the leak is and how BAD it is.

    You should have asked the mechanic who did the inspection.

    Almost all engines will have some TINY oil film develop near gaskets or seals that really aren't "leaks".
     
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  7. tankyuong

    tankyuong Senior Member

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  8. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    Without the oil change flap down, how would the mechanic know if it’s an actual leak? It can just be oil drops from the last oil change onto the flap as it was being drained.
     
  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Titanic Social Director

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    Need more info.
     
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