Timing cover leak

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by MaryannH, May 28, 2017.

  1. donzoh1

    donzoh1 Active Member

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    I'd agree that the Gen 3 would not likely have a cracked timing cover and the sealant might be an issue. Since there are other leak possibilities as well, I'd focus on leak detection first to be sure the problem is actually being fixed when the work starts.
     
  2. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    I had my 2012 PriusV in a few weeks ago for the 105k check.. and they told me that the Timing Chain Tensioner gasket was leaking. I said oh the one that they've already replaced twice before? (I paid for the first one, they replaced it a second time for free)
    So, I had it back this week for what I thought was the 3rd replacement. They told me they needed the car for a couple hours.. so we dropped it the night before.. for a 7:30a appointment. I didn't hear from the service advisor until 2:30p.. (was in a meeting, but picked up the call) was expecting him to tell me it was all set.. but he dropped that it was the timing chain cover and was a $2400 estimate.. not counting parts or tax.. I'm like WHAT?

    So, I asked a few questions, and he got snippy and nasty with me.. and pretty much the same an hour later when I picked up the car..
    I told him (pretty much the same I've seen note here) I can't believe they can pull the engine on a car with 110k miles and not find something else that needs replacing before they give me my car back.. His comment was that it was pretty straight forward.. (I looked at him and walked out)

    I sent his boss an email (late night) Tuesday and still waiting for a reply.. It's not the first time we've had issues at this same dealership.. and it's not the first time this particular service advisor has been snippy w/me when I ask him questions. He's been there a long time... my guess is that his boss.. (service manager) will side with his guy.. despite that I thought I had a reasonably good relationship with the service manager.. but so far, just crickets..

    If anyone comes up with a TBS or other, where it might happen to be covered, that would be awesome. but as others have mentioned here, I don't see any oil on the ground.. I can see a little weep on the back side of the motor.. at 110k miles, I'm implied to just 'keep an eye on it'..

    So, apparently they had my car ALL day.. and didn't do anything, except craft a $2400 estimate..
    I'm actually more concerned about the cluck in the steering wheel, which I've asked them about.. but they have yet to tell me that there is anything wrong with it.. (and it's only noticeable at low speeds, not a problem on the road or going down the highway)

    While my wife and I STILL do love our Prii's.. IDK that there will be another. I definitely need to find a new dealership, or good mechanic that I can trust..

    EDIT: and just after posting, I get the email with the Survey from Toyota inquiring about my recent service on 6/8.. (oh this will be fun)
     
  3. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    Just to verify: they’ve reseated the timing chain twice so far, and are proposing to it a third time, for $2400 USD? I would contact Toyota USA regarding that.

    Just FYI, unless they’re nuts they DONT pull the engine for this. It’s an awkward job, but readily doable with engine in car.
     
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  4. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    Hmm, given the challenges of applying the form-in-place gasket material on carefully cleaned and de-oiled surfaces in cramped dirty working quarters with a short working time, I might say "readily doable if you have budgeted for a certain fraction of customers returning for do-overs." I don't know what the fraction is. Probably there are some standout techs who can get it down pretty low.
     
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  5. ASRDogman

    ASRDogman Senior Member

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    More than likely it was NOT leaking.
    Probably from some other source. And probably nothing to worry about.

    Why would you put up with a jerk like the service writer?
    Why would you put up with the jerk service manager?
    Go to another dealership, or search for a GOOD repair shop.

    The oil could be leaking from the oil filler cap. About $10 and you can do that yourself.
    The oil pressure switch is common also, semi easy to do yourself.

    YOU are paying them money to treat you like crap?
    NEVER put up with that from ANY business, never.

    There are thousands of youtube video of repairs to the Prius you can watch and learn
    what to look for. And probably do the work yourself depending on your abilities

    I worked at 3 dealerships and none of our writers were allowed to do that. They HAD to be nice,
    and if things started getting out of hand, you called the service manager.

    Don't know what state you are in, but in Florida, we have the Lemon Law. I they have to fix the SAME
    thing 3 times, they have to replace the car. It might have changed some, maybe just the engine?
    But I know they have to remove the problem with that vehicle. I don't know all the details, but you should
    check this out. But your state might have the same thing. It might be for new cars only. As I said, I don't
    know all the details.

    You can also file a complaint with the better business bureau, and maybe the city where you are located.

     
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  6. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    Hey Mendel,
    to clarify, they replaced the Timing Chain Tensioner Gasket (part # 13552-0T020) in Feb 2017.. @ 72403 miles. (was $144.93) and then a second time around a year or so later. (no charge the second time)
    So, this was the gasket I was told was leaking a 3rd time and why the asked me to bring it back. Hence my confusion and all my questions when the service advisor dropped the $2400 bombshell on me. & yes, then got short and crappy w/me when I started asking questions. Very defensive... I struggled to get the information out of him to piece together what all he would tell me, so I've had to draw my own conclusion as to the turn of events. So, now I guess it's not that gasket leaking.. (since they didn't touch it) and now they say it's the 'timing chain cover'.. Tho I have my doubts after seeing all the other possibility.. (the seals, the other places it can leak etc.)

    I drove the car home and put it in the garage.. last night my wife asks me what stinks out in the garage.. This dealership is only ~5 miles from home.. my guess is that they must have sprayed some sort of de-greaser (?) on the back side of the engine? I ended up putting it back outside.. I envision that whatever it is will burn off after I drive it out on the highway or enough to get the engine up to temp.
     
  7. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    Thank you for your note.. and yea, we've been going there forever on account of that it is only ~5 miles from home. While we have a few other dealer locations to choose from they are all further.. there is 1 other that we tried (bought tires from) ~20 miles.. once they had our (92 Camry Wagon) they called me and had a list of things wrong with it. Like a right front wheel bearing. .telling me that it must be squalling going down the highway and they attributed that to my front end tire wear.. I told them not to touch it.. and 10 years later we still joke about that squalling right front wheel bearing.. that apparently has been just fine.. <sigh? So, that dealership is also out of the running.. Fortunately, there are others.. including the one where this car was sold new.. and not too much further.. So, may give them the opportunity to service this car at the next service. (see how they treat us)

    In the meantime, I've left appropriate feedback to the survey's I've received.. (still crickets) I'll consider trying to contact Toyota directly as time allows.. I'll also try to get a better handle on my own to see if I can find any other sources of this leak. which I tend to think is a weep/seep at best. (hopeful) It's not putting anything on the ground, and I don't really see much in the covers below to be honest.
     
  8. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    That’s a little less preposterous; it was the gasket on the timing chain tensioner (a small gizmo round back), just round the corner from the timing chain cover (an extensive panel, covers right end of engine, aka “front” of engine), that was leaking. Reportedly. Relatively cheaply (and easily) replaced once.

    Then the timing chain tensioner was (reportedly) leaking again and fixed again, this time for free.

    Now they report the big timing chain cover (the biggie) is leaking, and it’s going to be $2400 to reseal. In this case there is no gasket, it’s a form-in-place gasket, and getting it off, cleaning everything, applying fresh FIPG and getting everything together is INVOLVED. Front end engine mount comes off, the cover has around 25 bolts holding it on,,with various torque values. Belt pulley (without any belts) on end of crankshaft has to come off too. The water pump needs to come off too (coolant consequently drains). It’s involved, and they probably love it.

    Some thoughts:

    1. It may have been only the timing chain cover all along, that was leaking. Or they might have got it right, timing chain tensioner WAS leaking: first fix cost you $145~ (reasonable), second time was free. Give them benefit of doubt?

    2. Now they’re proposing to reseal the cover, and $2400 please. That IS getting a little exasperating. $2400 IS “full retail”, typical number reported here is around $1700.

    Maybe:

    1. Ask about goodwill from Toyo Corp? They may cover, or offer partial, say keep your expenditure to around $1200. The latter is a low-ball charge someone here mentioned lately. And 1/2 their inflationary quote. And they still come out ahead I’d think.

    2. Maybe this should be first step: just step away from it for a bit. Get it cleaned, or DIY the cleaning, and monitor frequently, see where (and if) the leak crops up again. Might even be the (minor) tensioner again.
     
    #108 Mendel Leisk, Jun 11, 2021 at 8:23 AM
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2021 at 9:20 AM
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  9. ASRDogman

    ASRDogman Senior Member

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    You can pull the platic cover off of the head, it just pops up.
    Look at the oil filler cap area, if it's oily, good chance that's leading. Just replace it.
    I've tried finding just the gasket, but no one has it, that I could find.

    Us a flashlight and look around for any oil, filled with dirt.
    You can get some Gunk, and spray it around the filler cap and timing cover, and on the firewall
    side where the oil pressure switch is, then hose it off. You want the "flammable" Gunk, NOT the foamy
    junk, it doesn't nothing. Better if the engine is cold.

    Drive it and check for any leaks everyday. The oil pressure switch is a common leak and will put
    oil everywhere!

     
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  10. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    Yes, your summary above it correct.. except apparently they opted not to change it this 3rd time... I had to pry that out of him too when I asked what they did to my car. .(since they had it all day) Apparently they only cleaned off the area. (he told me last time) and then they looked for and found the leak.. (I guess that takes all day) lol

    and yes, I think your noted steps below make sense.. and will consider.. I'm not certain how long or IF I actually call them or go back to them tho. I fully expected to hear from the Service Manager, but my guess is he's not going to contact me at this point. I've thought about asking for his boss.. as I'm sure he has one. & by now, I've had a chance to get over the rudeness of the service advisor.

    Thanks Again for your tips and advise. Even at $1200.. I think a bit too much to mess with if I can 'keep an eye on it'.. advise that I didn't hear from our dealership.. (rather here on PriusChat)
     
    #110 DogDaze, Jun 11, 2021 at 10:46 AM
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2021 at 10:52 AM
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  11. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    Thanks for your note and suggestion.. & yes, I think I will do that.. I've had that cover off before. as I've had to replace it too when I got this car.. somewhere along the way, I noticed that it was cracked/broken.. and oddly, only after I had it serviced here at this same dealership.. tho, it could have been that way before and I never noticed.. (will be interesting to see if it's still in tack or not)

    I've seen other issues with our lower covers on both cars after service.. (as I saw others note here on this post too) with missing fasteners and cracked and broken plastic.. where I guess apparently, they seem to break them getting them on/off for service etc. I'd have thought that the dealership would have R&R of these covers to a science by now and not bust them up for regular service. I think they tend to pull them down and then they break.. they're also not inexpensive to replace, but clearly all the damage I've seen has been done at our dealership.. (just getting in a hurry, or being too lazy to R&R them correctly)
     
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  12. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    Yeah rushed mechanics are murder on those underpanels and their plastic fasteners. I’ve had ours off maybe 25 times now, FINALLY needed to order some more fasteners. If they’re taken off carefully, and washed out in warm/soapy water before reinstalling, THEN they last.
     
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  13. ASRDogman

    ASRDogman Senior Member

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    My parents taught me to respect other people property.
    So when I worked on their cars, I was carfull and didn't brake anything.
    Those clips get how and beat up from heat and road debris, but they should note on
    the paperwork of any damage.

     
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  14. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    Yeah grit jams them. The fix is simple, but mechanics don’t want to bother. The 3rd gen “hinged” flap is a joke too: NOT able to flex properly, brittle, and they just pull that down, eventually snaps right off.
     
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  15. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    i buy the clips by the bag in 100 pieces. Pass them out like candy on Halloween during our Prius meet ups.
     
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  16. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    HAHAHA.. that's funny..
     
  17. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    yes, unfortunately and apparently not all seem to care or take the extra time. I understand the road debris etc.. but the areas I'm referring to are obvious and seemingly consistent to recent service.. I bought more clips for my wife's liftback last fall after we had it serviced and I noticed missing clips and more cracked parts. (it was hanging down slightly) unfortunately I haven't had a chance to get back under there yet.. (we don't drive hers much in the winter time) Kinda alternate between hers and my V between summer/winter etc. She has the blizzard pearl with the solar roof.. nice in the summer.. I have the black V, which is nicer in the winter months.. and I can easily see the road salt which I hate with a passion.. hers would tend to camouflage that road salt until the rust set in.. & then likewise, the road tar shows up on hers from the construction projects the rest of the non winter months.. it seems to work for us.. lol

    btw, after we lost her inverter at 70k, I've been a little reluctant to push either too hard.. that was another interesting experience where this same service advisor wasn't exactly forthcoming when I had already done the research had all our service tickets and recall stuff in order.. and they did cover it for us.. in which case, we were most gracious and passed along our thanks to both him and the service manager.. so, we have given them nice feedback response in the past.. (even tho, I still thought this guy was defensive when I asked him questions)
     
  18. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    I did pop that cover at lunchtime and that oil filler cap area is dry/clean..

    Interesting tho, I checked the oil level on the dipstick and it shows down 1/2 qt.. one would think they'd top it off when in for the 5k check..
    tho, I've had to ask them to do that in the past as well. I don't think down from this weep/seep.. I think it's the other issue w/this car... I've been too busy to investigate it tho.. but I've seen all the various reasons and solutions for it..

    Over the years, I've had it do that knock knock knock thing maybe 1/2 dozen times in total.. most always after I've left it parked for an extended period of times.. (more than a few weeks) it did it once this past winter when I did the remote start.. by the time I could get out to shut it off, it had resolved itself..
     
  19. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    Here’s Toyota part no’s for the engine undercover and fasteners. I would recommend them over generic, one-size-fits-all.
     

    Attached Files:

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  20. DogDaze

    DogDaze Member

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    Thank you!!
     
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