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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I have a rebuilt motor in my '03 svt focus and it's had a slight oil leak ever since I put it back together. It's not a large leak - only leaks a drop every 10 seconds or so, but I took the lower timing belt plastic protector off to take a closer look and found the leak coming from the front crank pulley.. so im almost certain its the front main seal [thumbd]

I'm sure this is a lot better than having to replace the rear main seal... but I could use some advice and/or guidance for doing the front main seal. What exactly do I need to take off to get to the seal? Any help would be very greatly appreciated! Thanks guys!
 

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Oil pump seal you will have to remove timing belt and pulley and timing gear to get to that seal, yes a PITA. Shoot since your in there if you can get the CFM billet gear install it since you have pull all that off just to get to the seal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Oil pump seal you will have to remove timing belt and pulley and timing gear to get to that seal, yes a PITA. Shoot since your in there if you can get the CFM billet gear install it since you have pull all that off just to get to the seal.
How can you be certain? I figured out how to get to it - yeah, had to do everything involved with removing timing belt, then remove the gear and the seal is right there. I replaced the oil pump seal during the engine rebuild, but how can I make sure it's not leaking? The entire lower area around the crank seal was wet from oil - my guess was that oil was getting spewed up from the rotation of the crank/gear...

But the real problem I ran into was that the replacement seal (victor reinz, autozone, part #: 47918) slipped in without even needing a tap... Which worries me. How the heck is the seal gonna be held in under pressure? And what is even more strange is that I measured the OD of both, the OE and the autozone seal, with a caliper measurement tool and they're roughly the same. But when I put in the OEM seal, it requires a good tap to go in (which feels right! It's gotta be held in somehow). The only "doubt" I have in the OEM seal is that it's plastic, not rubber. The rubber one also has a spring on the back, right around the inner lip, whereas the ford seal does not. So I don't know which seal to buy now. Any ideas guys? Anyone have experience with either seal?

Here are some pictures comparing the two. Black is Ford, orange/red is Victor-Reinz:





 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Oil pump seal you will have to remove timing belt and pulley and timing gear to get to that seal, yes a PITA. Shoot since your in there if you can get the CFM billet gear install it since you have pull all that off just to get to the seal.
Forgot to ask, what's the benefit of the CFM billet gear? OEM seemed sufficient to me...
 

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There should have been a spring on the Ford one. It might be in the oil pan now. I pack my seals full of trans lube prior to installing them to prevent the spring from coming out during assembly.
 

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I would stick with OEM when it comes to parts for your engine, It should require a little tap to get it on.... if it just slides on with with no positive resistance I would suspect its not right, but that ford seal should also have a tension spring on the back just like the Victor reinz one.( It applies pressure "seal" around the crankshaft)

The CFM billet oil pump gear allows you rev past 8K RPM
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
There should have been a spring on the Ford one. It might be in the oil pan now. I pack my seals full of trans lube prior to installing them to prevent the spring from coming out during assembly.
I would stick with OEM when it comes to parts for your engine, It should require a little tap to get it on.... if it just slides on with with no positive resistance I would suspect its not right, but that ford seal should also have a tension spring on the back just like the Victor reinz one.( It applies pressure "seal" around the crankshaft)

The CFM billet oil pump gear allows you rev past 8K RPM
Oh :eek: makes sense! I ordered the Ford one, forgot to ask about the installation tool though.. Read on another thread that someone made their own tool out of thin sheet metal (I made something similar out of a flat piece of aluminum soffit) and made sure the edges are not sharp so that it doesn't damage the seal. All its for is to give the inner seal something to smoothly slide into position over the end of the crank without folding the lip. Should this be sufficient to install the seal?

Yeah - the Victor Reinz seal was pressed in with my fingers. It went it WAY too easily.

Don't think I'll be revving it past 8k, I would be quite frightened to :D Appreciate the tip though, it would be a great mod!

Thanks for the help guys, the ford online community is really a great one! Glad I can be a part of it [ffrocks]
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Problem: OEM seal does NOT have the metal spring that goes around the inner lip. When I got the same seal several months ago it also didn't. What's going on here? My sister picked the seal up for me and the guy working in the parts department said it was a "redesigned part, but it'll work the same".
 

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Some do, some don't.

Two different seal designs, the only concern is not having a spring on one designed for it.
 

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Have you tried putting the new OEM seal in? Does it slip in like the Victor Reinz one or does it require more effort?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Have you tried putting the new OEM seal in? Does it slip in like the Victor Reinz one or does it require more effort?
I go to school out of state and work on the car on weekends, so I won't find out until Friday. BUT I already put the same seal in originally - and it did need to be tapped in on the outer edge (using a large socket or something). I think the first seal just had a little bend or imperfection on the inner lip that caused the leak..

Also played around with both (OEM & reinz) seals back and forth putting them in and taking them out to compare - the OEM definitely feels "right" in the sense that it requires more pressure to go in. The Victor Reinz literally slipped in with the pressure of my fingers.
 

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Common for some of them to slip in, the rear main goes in same way. I pressed in those by hand and been fine for years. Look CLOSE at whatever metal part (crank?) actually seals at center hole, any ding on it will ruin your new seal in short order. Like said, some have spring and some no.

The slip in type will have multiple OD seal ridges to seal, pressed in ones won't generally.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
^^ Yes, that seams to be the case. This one needed to be tapped in along the outer edge to go in but I just used a huge socket and tapped that sucker in. The sealing surface was free of nicks or scratches - so it should be fine. I used aluminum sheet metal nicely formed into a funnel like shape and fitted to the size of the crank to slip on the new seal. Oiled up the entire "tool" for the seal to slide without folding the inner lip and had to make sure the edge on this home-made tool did NOT have any sharp edges - to not damage the seal as you remove the tool!

Got the seal in and re-assembled timing & started the car - it ran really funky and sounded like a subaru boxer [paranoid] I thought we messed up the timing or something but it turned out to be just a bad connection on one of the spark plugs [woot]. Car runs like it should and the leak is gone!!

Now just gotta find the tiny coolant leak from the thermostat area.. it runs down the front of the tranny in a tiny trickle.

Thanks guys!
 

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^^^infamous Tstat housing leak, very common the fix is either buy the upgraded contour style or get the Bostig aluminum housing check out my build thread for pics on the Bostig....they are gathering a groupbuy now too, so check in with that thread.

how many miles on your car when front main started to leak?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
^^^infamous Tstat housing leak, very common the fix is either buy the upgraded contour style or get the Bostig aluminum housing check out my build thread for pics on the Bostig....they are gathering a groupbuy now too, so check in with that thread.

how many miles on your car when front main started to leak?
The front main was basically new... only had about 3k miles on it but I think the inner lip was just damaged or had a scratch or something on it since it was leaking a tiny bit ever since we rebuilt the motor.

Hm... I hope the thermostat housing isn't cracked and that it's just a seal! That billet one seems to be a bit pricey.... The coolant leak just came out of the blue this weekend too! So random..
 
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