Replacing oil pan gasket on 2.0 SPI? | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)

Replacing oil pan gasket on 2.0 SPI?

Discussion in '3rd Gen 1997-2002 2.0L SOHC' started by Dartht33bagger, Nov 5, 2019.

  1. Dartht33bagger

    Dartht33bagger FEOA Member

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    My 98 Escort has been leaking from the pan gasket for about 30k miles on the back side of the crank towards the firewall. I've ignored it because the amount of oil it loses is insignificant to the point where I never needed to add oil between oil changes. This past weekend when I did my oil change, I noticed a lot more oil than usual leaking out. Oil was coating the back side of the A/C compressor and dripping onto the lower plastic pieces, which it has never done before. I'm also noticing oil on the ground now under the car - something I never noticed before. I'm going to look for increased oil loss and add oil as needed, but in the meantime I want to prepare for the worst.

    Has anyone replaced the pan gasket on a 2.0 SPI? Is it something I could easily do the next time I change out my timing belt?
  2. Gamer92

    Gamer92 FEOA Donator

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    Are you sure its not leaking from the back side of valve cover?
  3. marclar

    marclar Moderator Staff Member

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    its super easy. only problems you will run into are the super rusted exhaust bolts. exhaust must be dropped down to remove pan.
  4. Dartht33bagger

    Dartht33bagger FEOA Member

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    I'd have to look again but I'm pretty sure its 100% dry above the pan.

    Awesome. Good to know I don't have to do anything major beyond fight the exhaust. Thanks!
  5. marclar

    marclar Moderator Staff Member

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    i would recommend getting it to where your going to do the repair. there should be 4 bolts on the cat where it attaches to the manifold IIRC... the rear 2 on the down pipe may not need removed for you can simply move the cat assy to the side..
    i would recommend getting the engine on the warm side but not totally hot, then SOAKING the 4 nuts with Kroil. let that soak overnight, spray again in morning and try to brake them loose.. theyll either come loose or brake..
  6. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    Something I do to make future exhaust part removes easy, is to clean up the threads on the studs at the exhaust manifold connect, and for the joint at the back end of the cat. Then when I put things back together, I use a good bit of anti-seize compound of course, but also put on an extra nut (or even two of them) in each location, so there are no threads exposed to the air. The extra nuts also get anti-seize compound on them. The next time, all those nuts just unscrew; even years later.
    Bas1c973sco likes this.
  7. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    Good tip about the "double nut" trick to keep off the rust.
    I run a dienut over the exposed threads to help the nut unscrew all the way once it's cracked loose.
  8. Dartht33bagger

    Dartht33bagger FEOA Member

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    All of this information is good. I'll definitely follow it. Should I also replace the front crank seal while I'm at it or am I asking for trouble there? I assume the rear crank seal is not accessible without removing the transmission. I'd like to replace as much as possible while I've got the engine torn apart.
  9. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    If you have the timing belt off, then I would recommend changing the crank seal.
    I think it's not bad to change that seal on the 1.9 engines when doing a timing belt change, and the oil pan and gasket are not involved so if it doesn't seem to be leaking and you aren't changing the belt, I'd be tempted to postpone changing it.
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  10. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    My Escorts are all 2nd gen LX's; so the 3rd gens may be slightly different.
    My concern would be if its going to be feasible to get the front main seal pried out with either a screwdriver or a seal removing pry fitting into that space. With the oil pump casting in place on the end of the block, its no longer a flat surface around the seal, because of the raised 'ring' on the oil pump casting, which protects the timing belt down there.
    I have never changed a front main seal till I had the oil pump casting unbolted/removed from the side of the block; as part of bearing replacement for instance.
    Removing that dished piece of sheet metal that is the back-side guide for the timing belt was also sometimes hard to do - even when the engine was sitting on my workbench. With a couple of the ones I did, that had to be carefully pried out using a pair of screwdrivers inserted from above on the front and rear sides of the crank; and flattened back to the dished shape before re-installing.
    I will be very glad to hear how this goes for Darth33bagger.
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2019
  11. Bas1c973sco

    Bas1c973sco FEOA Member

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    From the manual. I haven’t done my oil pan gasket yet. You will need some rtv for a couple parts of the mating surfaces highly recommend Black RTV from Permatex.


    [​IMG][​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  12. Bas1c973sco

    Bas1c973sco FEOA Member

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    This one should be more clear


    [​IMG]


    Well crap, the pixelation is bad. I’ll get you the tightening sequence.

    [​IMG][​IMG]
  13. 04Svt

    04Svt FEOA Member

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    To remove the front seal without pulling the oil pump cover. Hit the seal with a center punch , then put a self tapping screw in with a drill . Do not go in very far. You just need to catch one thread. Get some vise grips , grab screw and pop it right out.
    Problem solved, I’ve done this many times.
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  14. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    I am waiting until I need some exhaust work anyway before changing my oil pan gasket.
  15. Dartht33bagger

    Dartht33bagger FEOA Member

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    Popping back in here. Last Monday I cleaned everything off well and ran the car up to operating temperature. I was able to watch a very slow leak form out of the corners of the oil pan, explaining my slow leak for the past 30k miles. The front crank seal was leaking constantly, and explains my new oil loss issues. My plan is to replace the oil pan gasket, crank seal, and timing belt/water pump in a few weekends since all of these things are do.

    On top of it a P1131 code has just popped up this past week so I get to diagnose this as well! Apparently 184k miles is starting to be the breaking point for this little car ;)
  16. FordMan59

    FordMan59 FEOA Member

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    You might want to double check the crank seal to be sure that's where the leak is. Years ago I thought the crank seal was leaking on my '88 Pony so I changed it. Turned out it was leaking at the cam seal and running down making it look like it was coming from the crank seal. You may be right that the leak is at the crank, I'm just trying to prevent you going to the trouble of changing it just to find out later that it's actually running down from above.
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2019
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  17. marclar

    marclar Moderator Staff Member

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    fix exhaust leak.. replace oxygen sensor... fix p1131
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