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Discussion Starter #1
175K miles, auto trans, head gasket and valve cover gaskets replaced. Timing belt and water pump were replaced with the head gaskets (about 1 year ago, 165K miles). This car is in okay shape, not great by any means, she is certainly showing her age.

So, I am leaving the country for about a week and a half. I finally have the money (and time) to have my car inspected & fixed for the oil leak that's been bugging me for many months. Since I will be out of town, I am having a friend deal with the mechanic and service people. I gave him an absolute dollar limit, and I want him to make sure the repair sounds legit and fairly priced. I trust him to do this. Having said that, I kind of want to have an idea of what might be wrong and possible costs to fix. I trust this mechanic, I have used him for a while.

Oil leak in the front somewhere, I notice the oil drips off the timing cover in the front. The oil then works its way back as I'm driving and lands on the exhaust. Oil pump? Water pump? If something having to do with the timing belt has to be replaced, is there anything else that should be done at the same time (idler bearings, etc)?

If I'm going to drop a bunch of money into this, I want to make sure I fix everything right, even if it costs a little bit.

Photos here:
Photo Album - Imgur

Thank you!
 

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Front oil leaks are from three sources with no way of knowing which without digging in and looking:

-camshaft seals
-front main seal
-oil pump

Camshaft seals would have been replaced with the HG, so "should" be OK.

Fixing any of these leak points would require removing the timing belt ... if not done before, you should definitely replace all the TB pulleys, TB tensioner, and the TB belt tension adjuster. At 175k, they're on borrowed time.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I appreciate your response. I'm hoping that whatever it is, it will make the oil leak go away for good. I hate the smell of burnt oil on the exhaust every time I park it.

Good tip on the associated parts with the TB, might as well do them while he's in there.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I meant to post a response earlier, but never got around to it.

$987 later, my car is no longer leaking oil. I have put 500+ miles on it, with a few long drives thrown in there. Turns out, the front main seal and (at least one) camshaft seal was leaking. Mechanic replaced the seals, water pump and all the parts associated with the TB (pulley, tensioner, etc). I was really hoping it would turn out cheaper, but it is what it is. I did notice the car seemed quieter when I picked it up. I wonder if a pulley or something in the TB system was making noise as it was getting older, might have dodged a bullet whilst fixing the oil leak!

I appreciate everyone's input!
 

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I did notice the car seemed quieter when I picked it up. I wonder if a pulley or something in the TB system was making noise as it was getting older, might have dodged a bullet whilst fixing the oil leak!
Same here when I changed my pulleys out at 185k miles. Lucky I did it when I did.

Congrats on an apparently good repair.
 
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