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Old 03-19-2017, 11:27 AM   #1
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Lower Crankcase Leaks

Hey Everyone! Just joining in with my first post. Working on my son's 2003 SVT, and I must admit, this is one sweet driving car! Started as a clutch change, but I'm tackling other issues while everything is down. I'll post lessons learned as I finish, but I have a pressing question. I'm seeing leakage on both sides of the block at the upper gasket on the lower crankcase housing (see pics below). Currently waiting for a replacement rear main seal to arrive, so I'm willing to drop this lower crankcase, as long as I don't mushroom much further. The tranny, sub-frame, oil pan are all removed, so is this easy, or am I going to regret this gasket change? Has anyone seen these 10mm bolts shear? Any help is appreciated!


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Old 03-19-2017, 11:43 AM   #2
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If that's all the grime it accumulated in a lifetime of seepage - I'd leave it alone.

No leaks, no weeps, just minimal seepage.
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Old 03-19-2017, 11:50 AM   #3
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Thanks sailor. Not bad for just over 100k, but with all this work, I don't want to be here for a while. My truck needs help too
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Old 03-19-2017, 12:00 PM   #4
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wanna come help me with my zetec.. it receintly Exxon valdezed my driveway with ATX fluid (just kidding on helping but i did drop the entire trans case worth of fluid all over my driveway)

yeah im with what Sailor mentioned.. i have a few engines pulled they looked like they had leaks but were in fact from seeping and some been their a while could of been from when my valve cover leaked they cleaned my engine but didnt get it all ( behind things like the exhaust and intake)

since you mentioned it, if this hasnt been done, replace the timing belt + tensioners + waterpump... the timing belts have a lifespan of around 100,000 and they shred teeth off.. being an SVT its interference engine and will destroy the upper end if it goes while running
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Old 03-19-2017, 12:16 PM   #5
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Man that sucks ArcticMynx!!! I must admit this has been a wild ride, but actually enjoyable. Everyone's posts including yours and Sailor's have been a huge help and give me confidence to move forward. The Getrag shaft seals were tough to find, but NAPA saved the day by using SKF's numbers in their lists. And yes, you get an SKF seal (15690 & 14169). The CarFax for this Focus shows the timing belt changed at 75k, so I hope they didn't cut corners. Thanks for the feedback!
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Old 03-19-2017, 12:26 PM   #6
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You happened to catch a couple of the more practical minded folks here, who don't suggest opening the proverbial can of worms when not needed.

I rate things like that on the motorcycle comparison, seepage/dirt collection that washes off with a normal bath for those isn't a warranty item. It takes an actual weep/leak to get repair, and that holds for brand new not just used.
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Old 03-19-2017, 01:01 PM   #7
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^^^^^^ x2

hey when i buy cars as is i end up with alot of problems that people threw under the carpet xD god knows where this little spot came from.. o.O is that supposed the be there... ewww what is THAT!!! gotta love those moments..

and id rather open a can of worms now then have someone come back later going i just rebuilt this and this broke or happened.. >.< worst feeling you spent 2 weeks rebuilding something and forgot to do one thing and would of been easy to do when the engine was already disassembled..

i will give this warning seeing you answered the timing belt question.. if you loosen a zetec/svt tensioner there is a "CHANCE" it will fail.. its something to do with the design of it and ive seen it many times where people backed off the tensioner (which was new when they changed the belt) and down the road few months maybe more it starts to produce a tick or a knock.. its not common for them to do so but there has been instances of them going bad when released and retightened.

as for the 10mm bolts shearing I've yet to come across one that has and ive even used 3/4 sockets on them (stubborn ones) I live in canada so everything comes with a bounty of corrosion and rust..
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Old 03-19-2017, 01:30 PM   #8
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Thanks again to both of you. What initially scared me about this lower crankcase gasket is when I first loosened the last few tranny bolts, there was a decent set of drips of fresh coolant escaping. Freaked me out at first since I'm pulling off a dry housing, but I wondered if that coolant was coming out of a loose section in that upper to lower crankcase section. I'm a stickler for proper torque and when those flywheel bolts loosened with less than 150ft-lb, I thought maybe those 10mm between the sections backed off some over the years. I'm probably overthinking this and should just stop at the main seal. Think that heavy rust on the oil pan is from dissimilar metals between since the lower housing is aluminum? New pan is ready to go.
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Old 03-19-2017, 01:41 PM   #9
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Thermostat housing is above the trans/engine junction, and it has a tendency to drip even before any lost taking things apart. Clutch slave access hole is at the top, letting drips into the housing as well.
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Old 03-19-2017, 01:49 PM   #10
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Thanks Sailor! I bet your right about the stat housing.
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