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post #1 of (permalink) Old 11-09-2002, 01:07 PM Thread Starter
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Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

I've got oil leaking out of the bottom of the bellhousing, and on the back of the block as well. I noticed a small amount of oil dripping out of the bellhousing back when I swapped the tranny, but there was a trail coming from the input shaft, so I assumed that was it. The leak is still there though, and getting worse. Does this sound like a bad rear main seal?
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 11-09-2002, 01:59 PM
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Re: Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

Could be a rear main, but I'd suspect valve cover gasket first. I'm not familiar with the 4.0 but from reading this board, I believe it to be a later generation of the 258 since the head swaps. I had two 258's and the back of the block was always damp with oil on both of them. Is the oil pressure sender back there too?
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 11-09-2002, 02:45 PM
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Re: Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

Oil pressure port is on the passenger side, above the starter, so that's probably not the source. Leaky valve cover gaskets are a common problem. Get in there with a small mirror and look at the back of the head and top of the bellhousing. If they're dry it's probably a rear main seal.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 11-09-2002, 05:26 PM
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Re: Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

I've had so many leaks I finnally put a red colored oil in my transmision and regular oil in my motor, did help pinpoint the leak, now just got to fix it


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post #5 of (permalink) Old 11-09-2002, 08:26 PM
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Re: Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

Gigolo,
Most likely it's your rear main seal. I'm on my second one.

The first one leaked a little bit and then blew completely and sprayed oil everywhere. That was a quick failure. Within a day or two

The second seal started leaking 6 months after it was installed. It has been 4 years and the second one is still on. I don't know what happened but it stopped leaking.

This is typical to the 4.0L. Even the release engineer for the rear main seal owns a Jeep and his is also leaking. It's a trademark of the 4.0L.

Good news is, it's easy to fix. Just time consuming. It requires you to remove the oil pan and loosen two of the crank bearing caps and slowly rotate the upper protion of the seal to remove (2 piece seal).

Anyway, good luck as I will not replace mine until it blows oil again.
post #6 of (permalink) Old 11-10-2002, 05:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

Thanks everybody. The valve cover gasket looks good, so I guess I'll be replacing the rear seal. I've got a fsm to guide me, but i thought i'd get a second opinion since it looks like a bit of a pain to do. What really sucks is the motor only has 21k miles on it. Hopefully this isn't an every 20k mile thing. [img]images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img]
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 11-10-2002, 08:27 PM
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Re: Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

At 21k miles, that should be covered under the warranty [img]images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img] (unless it's not the factory engine)
post #8 of (permalink) Old 11-10-2002, 09:10 PM
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Re: Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

Two words of warning.

1. Be careful what you use to push the old one out. Do a search and you will read about one member that put a ding in the journal with a steel punch. Use a nylon or brass drift.

2. Make sure you know which way it goes in. There is a front and a back. Get it backwards and you'll be doing it again.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 11-11-2002, 06:24 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Oil leaking out of bellhousing, rear main?

Well, I do have 6 days left of the 3 year/36000 mile warranty. But I think the warranty has been void for quite a while since the engine is the only thing I haven't done anything major to.

Thanks for the tips Taz, will do.
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