Every vehicle owner should look after oil care to keep it maintained. Suppose you find any oil leaking, then immediately you should notice why leaking occured? you should troubleshoot your vehicle to detect the leak.
It is not good to leave the motor oil leaking unattended. However, it’s alerting when you get warned by the signs like a pool of oil in your driveway, a burning smell of a heated engine, or black smoke emitting out of the engine.
One of the main components is the oil pan gasket, regardless of the vehicle you are driving. It is at the bottom and works as a reservoir of engine oil that lubricates the moving parts.
Gaskets seal the oil between the pan and engine block and prevent it from leaking. However, they are susceptible to become damaged or punctured naturally over time, causing oil to leak.
It is a common issue but needs immediate replacement to save your driveway from messy dripping and greasy stains. If the oil pan gasket is not replaced in a time, the engine would not contain the oil.
As a result, increased friction levels can cause engine damage.
5 Steps to Replace Oil Pan Gasket on Chevy 350:
The challenging part is how to change the Chevy 350 oil pan gasket. Don’t worry! This step-by-step guide will help you resolve your issue and keep your engine run smoothly.
It is important to take precautions such as disconnecting battery cables and block the rare wheels.
Review your owner’s manual and see the steps below to install an oil pan gasket yourself.
Collect the Needed Tools:
- A clean rag,
- flat giant screwdriver,
- gasket scraper,
- new pan gasket,
- oil filter,
- new motor oil,
- torque wrench,
- socket sets and
- instant silicone.
You need to get the right size of the gasket when determining the installation.
Detect the Point of Oil Leakage
After jacking the car up and laying beneath the car, inspect for any leaks. Assess which part of the car is showing leakage.
It could be an oil pan or gasket, or other engine components. You can also check it by filling the engine with oil.
Engine oil keeps the vehicle performance high and cools down the engine. However, dropping oil from the oil pan can overheat the engine.
Remove the Engine Oil
For removing the oil, place the oil catch pan directly beneath the oil pan. Then, disassemble the oil pan and gasket by the unbolting.
Take out the oil filter. Replace it or just put it aside for a moment. If you have not changed motor oil in a while, then do it.
Clean the Surface
You have to scrape off all the residues and debris thoroughly with a solvent and rags.
Wipe down the installing surface where the old pan was installed. While cleaning, keep checking if there is any other wear.
Install New Gasket on Chevy 350
After scraping off debris from the block surface, install a new gasket using regular grease to hold it tightly.
Then, replace the removed oil pan with bolts and tighten them with a torque wrench. Refill the motor oil in your engine by disconnecting jack stands.
Put everything in its place and add the oil dipstick too.
Start the Engine and Look for Any Leaks
After installing the gasket, your work is completed. Now, the final step is to start the car. Run the engine for checking any leaks.
Oil Pan Leak Symptoms
Since oil is constantly flowing so, your vehicle might be leaking oil. There are plenty of reasons for oil leaking, such as camshaft seal leak or timing belt cover leak.
However, the common failure location is the oil pan gasket.
Let’s get to know how to assess if your oil pan is ruined. Following are some oil pan leak symptoms.
Oil Spillage under the Car
When the oil pan gasket is failed, your biggest clue will be oil puddles under your car.
If you are leaving for work routinely and suddenly notice the oil spillage under your car, do not neglect it. It is due to the faulty rubber of the gasket that begins to crack when constantly exposed to high temperatures.
Gasket rubbers deteriorate naturally over time in all vehicles. Fix this issue timely; otherwise, more issues such as low oil levels and pressure are expected.
Smoking from the Engine
Black smoke coming out from the engine is always a cause for concern. It happens due to oil leaking onto the exhaust manifold.
Avoiding smoking issues can cause additional problems like damaged oxygen sensors, gaskets and other components due to saturated oil.
Another noticeable sign is engine searing and overheating. As engine oils also keep the engine cool by lowering friction, it plays an important role.
However, oil pan failure leads to increased friction and leaked oil levels does not lubricate the pistons properly.
Consequently, rubbing of moving parts without oil generate intense heat and causing engines to overheat. You need to replace your gasket if it overheats for too long.
Warning Light on the Dashboard
You drive your car and suddenly notice an engine warning light on your dashboard; it is the sign of oil leaking. It might illuminate to alert you if oil levels and oil pressure is lower than normal.
Some models have separate lights indicating oil problems. You should not ignore the engine warning lights and investigate further.
Lower Oil Levels
Now you have noticed warning signs; it’s time to check the oil levels. Take a dipstick to measure the quantity of oil in the vehicle. It must be too low to detect.
However, less than usual levels is an indication of an oil pan leak. Replace your bad conditioned gasket to stop the leakage.
Smell of Ignited Oil
An important hint of an oil pan leak is the smell of burning oil. It is a fact that the oil pan gasket does not work forever and starts to break down as you continue to drive your car.
Eventually, a stage comes when you have to change the gasket no matter what. Along with other symptoms, the smell is also a warning sign. It occurs due to an overheated engine and its hot metal parts.
When oil comes in contact with this hot engine, it gives an unpleasant smell. Do not leave this issue unattended.
How to Remove Oil Pan without Removing Engine?
You can remove the pan without pulling the motor. However, you are required with something to hold the engine up when you raise it to pull the pan. Loosen the motor mounts.
Then, place the wooden block under the lift up, or you can use an engine hoist. It must be about 6 inches.
When replacing the oil pan and laying the gasket on silicone, remove the bolts and clean out the oil. The wood or pulley system will hold the engine firmly during the replacement process.
Repeat the replacement steps, such as removing components, cleaning the oil pan and engine block, and installing the new gasket or sealant.
The only way to replace it with an engine still installed is to place the woodblock to balance it.
Oil Pan Gasket Replacement Cost
Are you wondering how much the replacement process costs? Well, it varies depending on the model of your vehicle and the mechanic you choose.
It will cost more if there is any difficulty removing the oil pan. Usually, the gaskets and liquid sealants are low-priced; however, the major expense is on the labor services.
In addition, the labor cost also depends on the location.
The general price range for the complete replacement is anywhere from $350 to $850. The cost range for the repair parts can be approximately $110 to $150, yet the cost for labor lies between %200 and $700.
The parts are not expensive part, and it depends on the given task.
Now come to the popular brands of the vehicle to get an idea of replacement cost. Here are some sample costs from the top garages for you.
- Nissan calls for the lower price ranging from $130 to $180. Here the cost of the parts is $70-$159, and the service cost is $55-$90.
- Chevrolet Silverado is also an inexpensive option with a total price between $250 and $360. Here the cost of the parts is $75-$158, and the service cost is $165-$200.
- The most expensive oil pan gasket replacement brand is Honda CR-V, including a total price from $380 to $510. Here the cost of the parts is $80-$128, and the labor cost is $300-$330.
Unburden your queries by reviewing these frequently asked questions
1. Do I Need Sealant for Oil Pan Gasket?
Gaskets are enough to prevent leakage, and most of them are not designed to be used with sealant.
Gasket sealant for oil pan is an additional step to ensure leakage, and it is used where parts are likely to be removed from the block.
It is not at all required, however for uneven flange and solid gaskets, it is necessary.
2. What Are The Causes Of Oil Pan Gasket Replacement?
The reason for the replacement is a faulty or damaged gasket and pan that causes oil leaks. Sometimes, the gasket rubber gets cracks over time.
It becomes dry and starts breaking down when exposed to heat. The oil pan is also subjected to debris and potholes on the roads since it’s close to the ground.
3. How Do You Seal An Oil Pan Gasket Leak?
To fix the leaking issue, replace the old gasket with a new one on the oil pan. Use a slight instant sealant on it and install the new gasket.
Clean the installing area for a reliable new seal.
4. How Long Does It Take To Replace The Oil Pan Gasket?
Fixing time depends on the severity of the problem and the technician. If you are not a repairman, then six hours can be done.
In comparison, an expert can take from 1.75 to 2.50 hours in replacing the gasket.
5. How Serious Is An Oil Pan Gasket Leak?
If you notice visible leaks under your car and left it unattended, you are inviting more trouble.
It is a serious issue as dropping oil leads to an overheated engine. It leads to lower oil levels and oil pressure.
6. How Can I Tell If My Oil Pan Is Leaking?
Your oil pan is leaking if you encounter any clues like visible oil leaks, black smoke out of the engine, lower oil levels, overheating, and the smell of burning oil.
Also, read our Related guide on How to Change an Oil Pump on A Ford F150.
The vehicle’s engine has many components from block to spark plugs and cylinders etc. May be one of the reason of oil leaking is to damage the oil pan gasket.
It becomes problematic if you do not change your oil pan gasket timely. To avoid this, you have to replace it with the new one, and all the steps are given above.
The time and cost for replacement depends on the extent of the failure, vehicle model, and the mechanic. Change your sbc oil pan gasket now!