Large Oil Leak Below Intake - 2.2L - Chevy Cobalt Forum / Cobalt Reviews / Cobalt SS / Cobalt Parts
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-20-2017, 06:11 PM Thread Starter
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Large Oil Leak Below Intake - 2.2L

I had noticed a good amount of oil previously below the intake manifold of my Cobalt LS but figured it was an old issue from the previous owner because at the time my parking lot was dirty and covered in oil so I couldn't see new leaks. After moving, I noticed oil on the ground. Cleaned the entire front(facing towards grille) side of the engine of oil and drove it for a couple days, there was a thin layer of oil basically from the bottom of the intake manifold all the way down to the bottom of the oil pan. It's not like it's pouring onto the ground, but it's enough that it covers the majority of the front of the engine and between oil changes I lost about 2-2.5 quarts of oil. No coolant is mixed in, no oil in coolant, no oil out of exhaust, no cooling issues. Just the exterior oil leak.

The closest instance I found on the forums to mine was "Oil Leak in Front of Oil Pan" (https://www.yourcobalt.com/forums/pro...t-oil-pan.html) from 2015, near identical except I don't have oil near the valve cover gasket, only below the intake manifold. No solution was posted there either. I'm considering just getting some Oil Stop Leak and changing my oil and seeing what happens, but I'd like to get as much mileage out of this car as possible. Bought it smashed up from a deer and have put quite some time into it, would like to fix issues that pop up when possible.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-23-2017, 01:33 PM
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Personally I'm not a fan of using oil stop leak, most of them are essentially just an additive to make the gaskets swell up a little, same in high mileage oil. Anyways, I would do some more investigative work until you find the leak. There should be no oil coming out of the intake. From those pictures in the 2015 post looks like there could be several candidates. Check each one after cleaning up the oil and try and find the leak at the source.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-27-2017, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Robert Moitoza View Post
Personally I'm not a fan of using oil stop leak, most of them are essentially just an additive to make the gaskets swell up a little, same in high mileage oil. Anyways, I would do some more investigative work until you find the leak. There should be no oil coming out of the intake. From those pictures in the 2015 post looks like there could be several candidates. Check each one after cleaning up the oil and try and find the leak at the source.
Honestly even if I knew what I would be looking for, which I don't because I'm not familiar with ecotec engines, I don't really have the time to take the intake manifold off, clean everything, put it back together, and possibly have to take it apart again just to find the little leak. I may be able to try cleaning it again without removing the manifold, although I wasn't very succesfull last time, and checking then. But I have no idea what to even look for or what could be leaking.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-29-2017, 06:26 AM
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Originally Posted by branjohn1227 View Post
Honestly even if I knew what I would be looking for, which I don't because I'm not familiar with ecotec engines, I don't really have the time to take the intake manifold off, clean everything, put it back together, and possibly have to take it apart again just to find the little leak. I may be able to try cleaning it again without removing the manifold, although I wasn't very succesfull last time, and checking then. But I have no idea what to even look for or what could be leaking.
I had the same problem and I believe you will find the solution is a leaking oil pressure sending unit. That is located in the front of the engine underneath the intake manifold but above the starter motor. You normally cannot see that from the top of the car. Easiest way to actually see it is to stop at a carwash spray off the front of the motor from down along the sides and a little from underneath with the wand and then go somewhere you can lift up the driver's side in the air with a Jack and stand. I took my cell phone and put the video camera on and lifted it up and place and film slowly everything and I could see something. Then I actually took my laptop in hooked up my phone so I could cast the screen to it so I could actually see it and I could watch the oil dripping off the sensor.
You can borrow the Deep socket that they use to change those from AutoZone if they have one available if not you can buy the little socket for about six or seven dollars. The part was cheap and took me a total of 20 minutes to change including jacking up and lowering the no more oil leaks.
Is there a trick is to lay on the ground underneath the driver's side of the front of the car and reach up long ways to get the socket on the censor.
You definitely want to disconnect your battery from the trunk do not do this with your battery connected you have live power to your starter down there and if you happen to jump across it you'll activate the starter and scare the bejeebers out of yourself. You can also Arc 12-volt power to something and burn some wiring up. I'll try to post a picture of what you'll see for the sensor and where it is if I get a chance to look at it.
Tim

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 08:32 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by yourbadneighbor View Post
I had the same problem and I believe you will find the solution is a leaking oil pressure sending unit. That is located in the front of the engine underneath the intake manifold but above the starter motor. You normally cannot see that from the top of the car. Easiest way to actually see it is to stop at a carwash spray off the front of the motor from down along the sides and a little from underneath with the wand and then go somewhere you can lift up the driver's side in the air with a Jack and stand. I took my cell phone and put the video camera on and lifted it up and place and film slowly everything and I could see something. Then I actually took my laptop in hooked up my phone so I could cast the screen to it so I could actually see it and I could watch the oil dripping off the sensor.
You can borrow the Deep socket that they use to change those from AutoZone if they have one available if not you can buy the little socket for about six or seven dollars. The part was cheap and took me a total of 20 minutes to change including jacking up and lowering the no more oil leaks.
Is there a trick is to lay on the ground underneath the driver's side of the front of the car and reach up long ways to get the socket on the censor.
You definitely want to disconnect your battery from the trunk do not do this with your battery connected you have live power to your starter down there and if you happen to jump across it you'll activate the starter and scare the bejeebers out of yourself. You can also Arc 12-volt power to something and burn some wiring up. I'll try to post a picture of what you'll see for the sensor and where it is if I get a chance to look at it.
Tim

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I would really appreciate that. I've gotten my phone under there and gotten a little video, but it's covered in so much oil(who knows how longs it's been leaking under there) that it's hard to tell what anything is. Those are some good ideas about the car wash and laptop. Thanks!
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 09:19 PM
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I would really appreciate that. I've gotten my phone under there and gotten a little video, but it's covered in so much oil(who knows how longs it's been leaking under there) that it's hard to tell what anything is. Those are some good ideas about the car wash and laptop. Thanks!
Here you go look at these pictures, I took these tonight. It does not clearly show oil dripping from the switch casing but that's what happens and then when you're driving forward it blows it all over the motor and all over everything and drips all over and it makes it look like your motor is pouring oil all over. You will be able to change it easily if you jack up the car on the driver's side behind the rear wheel and put it on a stand you should be able to reach up underneath there and change that. Tim
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-02-2017, 10:32 PM Thread Starter
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My problem was as you described, it didn't seem to be dripping straight from the unit. It seemed like something sprayed it all over the front of the engine. That is likely the culprit after further investigation, I will be changing it later this week and will come back with my results. Thanks again!
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front , intake manifold , oil leak , oil pan , stop leak

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