Using at-205 to address a oil leak?

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by Phoenixjones, Jan 25, 2017.

  1. Phoenixjones

    Phoenixjones New Member

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    my 2010 developed a minor oil leak on the timing cover seal. Outside of doing a 2500 dollar repair to add 30 cents of silicone, debating on using at-205. Has anybody used the stuff on their Prius?

    Second question, is the timing cover plastic or metal? Thanks.
     
  2. Montgomery

    Montgomery Senior Member

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    Not sure how well the leak prevent fluid will work. Temporary fix at best. Eventually seal should be replaced. For me it would take 10 or more hours. Might be worth paying to get it done.
     
  3. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    Too, $2500 seems too high. IIRC from members here: highest was $1700, and one as low as $1200?

    How minor, have you managed to see it yourself?
     
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  4. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    I'd be cautious about at-205. Product description on Amazon says "rejuvenates all rubber seals and gaskets". Does this mean it swells rubber? I'm not sure, am always reluctant to throw anything new into the engine.

    Here's some info on that cover, and the byzantine amount of detail involved in laying the sealing beads, torque spec's.

    My sense, if it's a minor leak, might be simpler/safer to just live with it, comparing through all the effort in outlined in the attachement, possibly mess something up further.
     

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  5. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    +1.

    What kind of leak is it?
    Enough to leave a puddle?

    I'm VERY hesitant to throw $2500 on this kind of repair for several reasons, not the least of which involves mechanics who are highly incentivized to work quickly, ripping lots of things out of the engine bay and depending on them to put them all back....correctly.
    No left-over parts.
    No over or under torqued fasteners.
    I wouldn't have this done personally if the car were still under warranty and it was free, but that's just me being me again.

    I'd put the $2500 in the bank and monitor the weep rate.
    A little oil might be seeping out of the engine, but nothing much is getting in.
    If your leak rate reaches as much as a quart every 5K?
    Verify it's leakage and reassess.
    It's not like you couldn't replace the whole engine for the same $2500 in a few years, and if a cell phone queen or GPS jock turns you into a new car shopper in the next year or three you'll have an extra $2500 to throw down on a new car......

    ....if you're still able to drive one.

    Good Luck!!!
     
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  6. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    Again, high water mark for prices incurred (as reported here) was $1700, IIRC.

    Standing at front of car, facing engine bay, it's the left side of the engine with this cover. Maybe jack it up, remove passenger side wheel, have a look with good light, near the bottom of that side of engine. There's a plastic panel obscuring view from wheel well into engine bay, held on with plastic fasteners I believe. Maybe remove that too.

    You can also look from above, though not sure how much you'd see there, the bottom would be the worst.

    And if you have floor jack and safety stands (or ramps): raise the whole front end, remove engine under panel, check it for drippage, and have an even better look at the bottom of the engine at the timing cover end.

    Are you noticing any oil consumption, on the dipstick? Don't believe this has been asked or addressed.
     
    #6 Mendel Leisk, Jan 25, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2017
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  7. tankyuong

    tankyuong Senior Member

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    I would use thicker grade oil and ignore it
     
  8. Phoenixjones

    Phoenixjones New Member

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    Appreciate the thoughts on it. No issue with oil loss at the moment. This came up from a inspection I recently did on the vehicle. Ive noticed no changes since then, but I have yet to witness the leak myself (I'll pull off the wheel well and take a look). Haven't noticed any oil being chewed or any lights or any leaks on the floor. Even the mechanic said that he'd probably just watch it and that if it goes 10k till the next oil change with no oil lights or visible leaks on the floor, don't bother with it

    And if a new used engine's 2500 itself I might just go that route in 3 years (strip it down, clean it, seal it, install it). It seems a little pointless to spend that money to fix a 3 dollar seal vs replacing the entire engine itself (go figure)).

    Thank you for the strip-down notes for that as I might have an option to have a coworker who works on his German cars that has a lift and make a weekend project out of the engine drop to fix the leaking seal.

    The amount of bolts for that cover's a little insane.

    The mechanic was at a Toyota dealership. Car's not under warranty, 2010 with 90k miles in Texas. I have zero concerns about shopping this repair around as I have quite a few mechanic shops around.

    With all of that said I still may give it a shot. I know it works on oil seals, just concerned whether the panel was metal or plastic.
     
  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    I believe Toyota mechanics do the reseal without removing the engine. Still, working in awkward close quarters like that, how good is their quality control, all those fiddly/specific applications of liguid gasket??
     
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  10. Phoenixjones

    Phoenixjones New Member

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    well the liquid gasket would be what they would use, but I'm pretty sure they have to take off the cover in order to clean it out, remove old gasket, apply new liquid gasket, then put back on.

    It would be insane to think they would take "Sealer in a can" and spray a bit of the shaft and call it fixed. From what I've read and reviewed, you have to drop the engine out in order to get at the gasket.

    At that point, I'd look to buy a 2011 engine and drop it in (so I'd avoid the risk of oil burn also).

    Priuses... we love to hate them.
     
  11. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    I think they remove the cover, but not the engine.
     
  12. Phoenixjones

    Phoenixjones New Member

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    if I could figure out how to do that I'd probably attempt to do it myself (with all 20+ bolts).
     
  13. Mola

    Mola Junior Member

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    Check out a review of the at-205 review on Amazon in a CAmry. Reviewer said, the additive kinda dissolved the paint of the oil pan and clogged the oil intake for the oil pump. Looking at a new and used Prius oil pan on eBay, seemed it is also painted.

    Reviewer said it fixed the leaking but with a bill and possible damage from running oil deprived.
     
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  14. Judith L Woodall

    Judith L Woodall Junior Member

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    I was looking for a good place to ask the question "Did my 2009 Prius come from the factory with a plug of silicone by the timing cover as shown below?" This is probably the good place to ask.

    The "blue image" (done magically somehow) shows the location of a slow oil leak starting from where cylinder head, timing cover, and block meet. The leak was found by the good folks at Rod's in Bellingham, Washington when they we rebalancing my hybrid battery. I am one happy camper because the leak is going to be fix by Toyota under my extended warranty which expires in two weeks.

    IMG_20190125_145341.jpg IMG_20190125_145424.jpg just the leak.PNG
     
  15. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    That looks very minor, if any. I would not do anything; they do not have factory skill level, and would be doing the reseal without engine removal.
     
  16. Judith L Woodall

    Judith L Woodall Junior Member

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    Thank you for responding and sort of affirming my worst fears. I have an extended warranty which I paid good money for to cover these kinds of things and I would expect the dealer (1) to report a small leak TO ME when it is found during routine maintenance, (2) give ME the option to make repair decisions, and (3) to do the repair in a professional manner. I now believe #1 is not a good assumption and you are implying that #3 is not a good assumption which concur with I after finding the silicone (probably) hack repair. The car is almost 10 years old and has less than 13,000 miles on it. It is going into the dealer on Monday for a warranty "timing cover reseal." It should emerge all fixed on Thursday, Jan 31 and I will have until Feb 12 to file another claim with the warranty administrator if the leak is not all fixed or something else breaks.

    Is there anything I can specifically ask of or say to the dealer that might facilitate a professionally done repair?

    Thank you
     
  17. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

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    I don't see a leak on your pictures, your engine looks very clean.

    Many times when you address a non problem, a problem will magically appear later....when it's out of warranty
     
  18. Judith L Woodall

    Judith L Woodall Junior Member

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    The seepage (slow leak) was described to me to be the brightest part of the blue image. A dye was added to the engine oil which shows up when a special light is shined on it. The brightest area is not next to the timing cover. The mystery silicone is next to the timing cover I think. Is that correct? I sure would like to know what how and when the silicone got there.

    just the leak.PNG

    The oil Rod's technician initially saw is in the next photo. The seepage source was identified by the blue dye.

    just the leak without bluelight.PNG

    The technician at Rod's thinks the real seepage is from the head gasket but the dealer's technician "verified" the leak to be from the timing cover and the extended warranty repair was approved. I'm not sure the silicone thing can be seen in this picture but if you can see it would you point it out to me?

    I am just not wired to let something like this go, so the dealer fix will happen next week and I will spend some money at Rod's and maybe a different dealer to verify the "verified" seepage is gone and nothing else is rotten in the state of Denmark (or whatever).

    Thank you
     

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  19. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    Not necessarily. I'd suspect the car came from the factory with that sealant bead squeezing out like that. There are assembly instructions in the Repair Manual, that call for application of short bead of special sealant at a junction, a zone that's especially leak prone.

    upload_2019-1-26_15-22-37.png

    Bottom line: your pictures look very clean, slight/trivial oil at most. I would do nothing.
     
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  20. Judith L Woodall

    Judith L Woodall Junior Member

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    Thank you for the most useful information. I will trust the dealer again.

    I understand that the leak or seepage is minimal but it was not visible 5 months ago. It is probably just getting going and I have 2 weeks left on an extended warranty. I sure do not want to be spending money getting this fixed in a year or two. It will not be any less dangerous for someone to muck with this stuff in the future; Only more expensive to me.

    Is the short bead of special sealant visible in the picture with the red arrow? If it is can you point it out to me?

    Is the head gasket visible in the picture with the red arrow? If it is can you point it out to me?

    In the blue picture is the short bead of special sealant next to the timing cover? I think the timing cover is at the bottom of the blue picture.

    Is the cylinder head visible in either of the pictures?

    Sorry for all the stupid questions but I have two sets of pictures (and the blue picture) and I am having a hard time understanding how they fit together. I have to get comfortable with the fact that the head gasket has be verified by the dealer's technician as not leaking and the technician at Rod's thinks he sees seepage from the head gasket. Having some idea of how the parts are situated might make it easier to talk to the dealer folks. Can you point me to some website with simple pictures of the area in question. The search terms I have tried are not finding anything simple or useful.

    Thank you for answering my original question.

    I love PRIUSchat!
     
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