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1969 232 leaking oil from rear of engine

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CornFed Rebel View Drop Down
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    Posted: Sep/12/2017 at 2:45pm
I've got a pretty good sized oil leak on my '69 Rebel. It started leaking on Sunday during an afternoon drive. It was leaking bad enough that I was leaving a trail of oil behind me, and the low oil light came on. I added a quart to get me home, and it had leaked it out in the 30 miles home. The whole underside of the engine/transmission/frame rails are covered with oil. Last night I looked at it and the oil spot had grown to about a foot in diameter. Some people I've talked to say it's the rear main seal. Others have said it could be as simple as the oil pressure sending unit. I'm not sure.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Raccoonman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/12/2017 at 3:45pm
first off, get ya some pig mats before your neighbors have a cat about the oil. Next, get ya a cheap can of brake clean and spray off the underside of the engine, and see if you can spot the actual leak. Seems to me that a rear main would be more gradual, so my impression is that the sending unit failed. If so, that's a lot quicker and easier to remedy than the rear main. If not, budget a weekend for tackling that job. it's not terribly difficult, just time consuming and labor intensive.  I'd also think the rear main would look more obvious if oil was coming out of the bellhousing. Lucky you don't have a torque tube car like mine.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 6768rogues Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/12/2017 at 6:10pm
My oil pressure sending unit failed and let the oil out in a hurry. If that is not the source of the leak, check your PCV system. If it fails the crankcase can build up pressure and can force oil out where it normally would not leak or would only drip.
Why Ramblers? Chicks dig 'em. Whatever it is, I can take it apart.
Located near Rochester, NY
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote CornFed Rebel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/12/2017 at 7:25pm
Thanks guys!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote farna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/14/2017 at 9:06pm
If it's not the sending unit (located on right side near back of engine, IIRC), it's most likely a rear seal. At this point my bet is the sending unit, as the leak started suddenly. Rear mains tend to start leaking and progessively (but rather slowly) get worse, not suddenly start leaking, but it COULD -- especially if the car sat for a long time.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote FSJunkie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/14/2017 at 11:57pm
I'm thinking the valve cover gasket may be completely toast. As in it might have a section missing.  Run the engine at decently high RPM for any length of time and it's easy to pump a quart or two of oil into the valve cover. Once the level in there rises above the gasket surface it will literally pour out. AMC sixes are notorious for valve cover sealing problems because it's a 3 foot long valve cover with only about 8 bolts holding it down, so they leak, and then owners warp the cover trying to tighten it down and stop the leak, so now they leak worse.

This is a 60,000 mile original engine. You don't know what is lurking inside. You probably don't want to know. The valve stem oil seals could have disintegrated into tiny pieces and clogged the oil returns in the head. When I tuned that engine for Jason I looked everything over and it seemed like a happy and healthy engine, but things hide inside and you never know what is in there until you actually see it.

It's a good idea to pop the valve cover off and have a look. The rocker arm shaft is probably filled with sludge by now and needs cleaned out anyway. Do that, check the oil drains, check the valve cover for warp, and reinstall it with a new gasket. The bolts holding it down should be tightened with a hex driver (like a screwdriver handle), NOT a socket and ratchet. Their torque spec is 50 inch-pounds. They are barely more than snug. Anything more will warp the cover. 

'66 Marlin: 327/T10/3.54 Twin Grip
'72 Wagoneer: 360/TH400/3.31
'73 Ambassador: 360/TF727/3.15
'77 Hornet: 232/TF904/2.73
'84 Eagle: 258/TF904/2.73
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tomj Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/16/2017 at 2:52pm
to find out leaks you need to clean the engine. i go to one of those 'magic wand' car washes and just get all wet kneeling on the ground. it's worth it.

both the 232 and the 195.6 OHV can leak oil from the back of the valve cover that travels a circuitous path and drips down the back of the oil pan seal area. what's worse is it seems to collect behind the rear shim plate, and leak another ounce of oil the next day!

a *sudden* new leak doesn't sounds like rear seal. those tend to seep, then get worse slowly. but old enough, surprises happen.

i too suspect gauge/idiot light sender. especially non-OEM replacements, they're often junk esp. Echlin brand, which, like Fram, were once a quality brand, now just a name owned by a holding corporation.

a leak enough to make the light come on is a huge leak. it should be easy to find.

1961 roadster american
195.6 OHV, modded
T5z, 3.42:1 mustang axle
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