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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yesterday 2/1/2022, got a refund ( minus $40 oil change ) from the master-mechanic/owner who messed up my car in September 2020. I recall one time that ******* kept saying " drain plug " while he went down under both headlights to check . Now, I need to find one honest competent mechanic who can correct & fix the oil leaks ( to the ground ) that started 2 days after the repair. Any " advice " is welcomed & appreciated
 

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What did they do to mess it up? There’s not a whole lot you can do wrong on the oil pan gasket replacement. Timing cover may also be the source of the heavy leak.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
What did they do to mess it up? There’s not a whole lot you can do wrong on the oil pan gasket replacement. Timing cover may also be the source of the heavy leak.
Thank you for your reply . Isn't there a " drain plug " on the oil pan ? The head-mechanic/owner ( 25-30 years of experience ) initially refused to acknowledge ( that something went wrong in the process ~ Aug 2020 ) other than advised me to look for " oil leaks " after he finished the oil pan gasket replacement and AC service ( found a hole and local Ford dealership confirmed AC lines leaking in March 2021 ) . I responded " WHERE " and he said " here ... there ... anywhere " . At the time, it didn't cross my mind he could make that big of a mistake . 2 days later, I found a puddle of oil leak behind the passenger tire so I called him . He said " bring your car next week " . I took my car there the following week . He was quite busy that day, came out to my parked car and went under both headlights with flashlight " drain plug .... drain plug " . He didn't have time and told me to come back next Tuesday. So I went back, he said it's the valve cover gasket so I paid him to replaced it . That did not fix the oil leak, then he said it's the crankshaft seal that is leaking oil. So we replaced that too. The oil leak problem remained, SAME spot(s)/location behind the the passenger headlight below ( close proximity to ) drive belt/tensioner etc.

1 local auto shop in late 9/2018 recommended replacement of timing cover seals & gaskets and thermostat & gasket(s). Fast forward to late 11/2022, another shop ( head-mechanic/owner ) recommended RESEAL timing cover & NEW water pump & NEW oxygen sensor .
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
What did they do to mess it up? There’s not a whole lot you can do wrong on the oil pan gasket replacement. Timing cover may also be the source of the heavy leak.
I think you might be RIGHT . I went back to that shop yesterday/Feb 7 and talked to head-mechanic/owner about what went WRONG on the day he replaced the oil pan gasket & serviced my AC . He admitted to " misdiagnosed " the source of the oil leak on the ground ( that's why back then/2020 he suggested valve cover gasket & crankshaft seal replacements but those 2 repairs didn't stop the oil leak ). He NOW thinks " timing belt cover " is actually the CULPRIT and he couldn't tell me the location 😒 of the timing cover because he's not similar with 2001 Ford Taurus. Just this morning @ 9:30 am, I popped open the hood to see/inspect WHERE the white smoke coming from . It's from behind & below the alternator, exact area of the oil leak on the ground . I also asked him about smoke coming under the hood on occasions ( not everyday or every time I drive ) and he answered " it's oil leak onto exhaust causes that " and he ensured :cautious: me that the car would/will not catch fire .
 

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Yeah exactly what you describe is the timing cover. That’s exactly what I just did on my new to me 2005. All those gaskets are well past their prime and they leak pretty badly by this point in life. 3.0L duratec motors from 1996-2012 all do the same thing in all the cars they were offered in. It hits the exhaust too like you’re describing. It’s not likely that would ignite. Power steering leaks are far more likely to do that so keep an eye on that too. Pressure hose on firewall can spray on the exhaust. Make sure that’s not also causing issues.
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Yesterday 2/1/2022, got a refund ( minus $40 oil change ) from the master-mechanic/owner who messed up my car in September 2020. I recall one time that *** kept saying " drain plug " while he went down under both headlights to check . Now, I need to find one honest competent mechanic who can correct & fix the oil leaks ( to the ground ) that started 2 days after the repair. Any " advice " is welcomed & appreciated
Here is something that you can try. I had a Taurus that left puddles on my garage floor. After doing quite a bit of work with both pan gaskets, that was as much work that I was willing to do. Replacing the timing cover gaskets on the DOHC engine requires engine removal & I wasn't capable of doing that. After those new gaskets, I still had puddles, a bit smaller than previously. Although I don't usually use or recommend additives, it was a case of try it, what do I have to lose. So here is what I used:
https://www.amazon.com/Lucas-Oil-10...id=1644427973&sprefix=Lucas+oi,aps,134&sr=8-2

If you try this, you MUST use it with each oil change. Although it will NOT completely stop ALL oil leaks, in my case it did REDUCE the size of the oil puddles down to about 1-2" and I could live with that.
 

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Here is something that you can try. I had a Taurus that left puddles on my garage floor. After doing quite a bit of work with both pan gaskets, that was as much work that I was willing to do. Replacing the timing cover gaskets on the DOHC engine requires engine removal & I wasn't capable of doing that. After those new gaskets, I still had puddles, a bit smaller than previously. Although I don't usually use or recommend additives, it was a case of try it, what do I have to lose. So here is what I used:
https://www.amazon.com/Lucas-Oil-10278-Engine-Stop/dp/B001KXN3YQ/ref=sr_1_2?crid=1TWF6RLLD8M7A&keywords=lucas+oil+stop+leak&qid=1644427973&sprefix=Lucas+oi,aps,134&sr=8-2

If you try this, you MUST use it with each oil change. Although it will NOT completely stop ALL oil leaks, in my case it did REDUCE the size of the oil puddles down to about 1-2" and I could live with that.
Then, get an inexpensive metal drip pan from Wallyworld (auto section near the oil) you can drive the car over when parked and keep the oil topped off. Like they about the Duratec engine, "If there ain't no oil under it, there ain't no oil in it", lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Here is something that you can try. I had a Taurus that left puddles on my garage floor. After doing quite a bit of work with both pan gaskets, that was as much work that I was willing to do. Replacing the timing cover gaskets on the DOHC engine requires engine removal & I wasn't capable of doing that. After those new gaskets, I still had puddles, a bit smaller than previously. Although I don't usually use or recommend additives, it was a case of try it, what do I have to lose. So here is what I used:
https://www.amazon.com/Lucas-Oil-10278-Engine-Stop/dp/B001KXN3YQ/ref=sr_1_2?crid=1TWF6RLLD8M7A&keywords=lucas+oil+stop+leak&qid=1644427973&sprefix=Lucas+oi,aps,134&sr=8-2

If you try this, you MUST use it with each oil change. Although it will NOT completely stop ALL oil leaks, in my case it did REDUCE the size of the oil puddles down to about 1-2" and I could live with that.
I don't recall seeing any oil leaks or puddle of motor oil on the ground until 2 days after that shop owner replaced the oil pan gasket ( then he advised me to look for oil leaks " here ... there ... anywhere ". Lucas is a top brand, will consider it after timing cover repair.

I am little LESS concerned with oil leak(s) on the ground than see smoke from the under hood while driving, it's unnerving & scary.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yeah exactly what you describe is the timing cover. That’s exactly what I just did on my new to me 2005. All those gaskets are well past their prime and they leak pretty badly by this point in life. 3.0L duratec motors from 1996-2012 all do the same thing in all the cars they were offered in. It hits the exhaust too like you’re describing. It’s not likely that would ignite. Power steering leaks are far more likely to do that so keep an eye on that too. Pressure hose on firewall can spray on the exhaust. Make sure that’s not also causing issues.
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The shop's head-mechanic/owner ( 2/7 Monday ) also fessed up the oil leaking from ABOVE the oil pan. Instead of acknowledged what he saw and went wrong, he " manufactured " 2 phony repairs ( valve cover gasket/$636 was leaking & then it was crankshaft seal/$165 ) to cover up the botched repair work that created/started the oil leak on the ground and now smoke from under the hood. He even directed me to " muffler " shop to take a look at exhaust issue last year . A despicable shrew .
 

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I'm glad you were able to get a refund. To your original question, if you've got an active Nextdoor online community where you live, ask for honest mechanic recommendations there. People ask that here, and everyone chimes in with their good and bad stories, and the best shops rise to the top.

This reminds me of a multi-millionaire I knew who got screwed out of a couple hundred by a contractor. I was there when he pointed his finger in the guys face and with a gruff voice he said "you don't mess with me and my money" and they got it settled.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
I'm glad you were able to get a refund. To your original question, if you've got an active Nextdoor online community where you live, ask for honest mechanic recommendations there. People ask that here, and everyone chimes in with their good and bad stories, and the best shops rise to the top.

This reminds me of a multi-millionaire I knew who got screwed out of a couple hundred by a contractor. I was there when he pointed his finger in the guys face and with a gruff voice he said "you don't mess with me and my money" and they got it settled.
That day ( 2/7/2022 ), I brought up my receipts aren't actual invoices ( every copy is either " estimate " or " draft " ~ NOT invoice# ) and how did he report those " repair earnings " to IRS and he got a glimpse of print out of Bureau of Automotive Repair complaint form along with receipt copies in my hand. I think that frightened him a bit and also I drove only 9,000 miles ( since Aug 2020 ) which still covered by warranty. There's no oil leaking from valve cover gasket, but the crankshaft seal is a botched repair ( it's popping out of place and leaking oil ).

I believe there's a conventional wisdom " hit or miss " on what will/can happen to car repairs. Even reputable shops could've messed up a few car repairs ( incidentally by less competent hired mechanic ) in the past .
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
UPDATE: Diablo Auto Care did honest repairs on my car, installed NEW Mahle timing cover & oil pan gasket sets & Motorcraft PW505 water pump kit plus 2 exhaust flange gaskets.

NO more oil leak on the ground
NO more exhaust smell
NO more oil burning smell
NO more smoke from under the hood ( from oil drips onto exhaust )
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
So what is the current cost to do a timing cover?
$650-$700

I paid $540 for oil pan gasket replacement & oil change ( required ) in Aug 2020. Chris Ludwig/owner & master mechanic @ Diablo Auto Care quoted/charged $1,305 for timing cover gasket set & oil pan gasket set ( plus oil change & coolant change service ).

$154.73 for Motorcraft pw505 water pump kit & 2 exhaust flange gaskets @ cost with NO additional labor charge.
 

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$650-$700

I paid $540 for oil pan gasket replacement & oil change ( required ) in Aug 2020. Chris Ludwig/owner & master mechanic @ Diablo Auto Care quoted/charged $1,305 for timing cover gasket set & oil pan gasket set ( plus oil change & coolant change service ).

$154.73 for Motorcraft pw505 water pump kit & 2 exhaust flange gaskets @ cost with NO additional labor charge.
Seems pretty reasonable for the TC replacement. Oil pan seems high but together the cost is reasonable.
 
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