Oil leak | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)

Oil leak

Discussion in '3rd Gen 1997-2002 2.0L SOHC' started by 1997escort, Jan 13, 2018.

  1. 1997escort

    1997escort FEOA Member

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    Hello all. Been awhile since I've had any issues with my 97 escort. But here recently I've been getting a smell of burning oil while driving. So I decided to replace the valve cover gasket since it seemed to be leaking from there. I just replaced it the other day,easy install no issues. But I noticed it still has the smell and seems to be leaking from somewhere below the ignition coil after some investigating. I've tried googling his issue with no luck.any ideas?


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  2. spearjh

    spearjh FEOA Member

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    If your valve cover was leaking for a while, and enough to get the smell of burning, then there might just be build up remaining on the exhaust manifold that as yet to burn off. If that's the case, and the cover is no longer leaking it should just go away after a while. Alternatively you could clean it.

    If it is still leaking and somewhere down under the coil pack, then the only think I can think of down there would be the head gasket, but that probably wouldn't give you a burning smell because it would be leaking down under the exhaust manifold.

    Other than that, have you gotten down under the car for a look? A healthy oil pan leak can be getting the exhaust down underneath. You may just need to clean some things up and do some more intensive looking.
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  3. 1997escort

    1997escort FEOA Member

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    I just had the exhaust replaced,I didn't see any leaks from beneath when they had it on the lift. Could I spray that down with some degreaser and water?cover the electrical components with Saran wrap.

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  4. spearjh

    spearjh FEOA Member

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    Yes you can. If you don't have a ton of stuff / area to clean, I have taken to using this alot:
    http://www.crcindustries.com/products/lectra-motive-174-electric-parts-cleaner-19-wt-oz-05018.html It works fast and I figure it must be quite safe for electricals, tho I always let things dry thoroughly before actually energizing them. I also use tubs or rags or whatnot to catch the runoff. The downside is that its a bit pricey, so if you have to do a lot that can be a downer.

    I would pull the heat shield off of the front of the exhaust manifold to see if you have oil build-up on the manifold. If so, focus on cleaning that off and see if the smell goes away.
  5. 1997escort

    1997escort FEOA Member

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    I'm familiar with that spray,we use it at work. Next decent day I'll try to clean it up.

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  6. rbailin

    rbailin FEOA Member

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    You can use that spray cleaner on energized (live) circuits. It's tetrachloroethylene and it's non-flammable and non-conductive (to 37.5KV, unlike, say, water or alcohol) and won't short out the coil. It also evaporates very quickly leaving no residue of its own. ($6.99 for a 19 oz. can is actually rather cheap for a product like this).

    It's definitely not the same as CRC QD Electronics Cleaner, which is more expensive ($8.49 for an 11 oz. can), flammable and conductive (but very quick drying).
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  7. spearjh

    spearjh FEOA Member

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    Very cool. Great to know. Thanks.

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