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2017 Explorer sport, small oil leak, doesn't seem to get fixed.

ISTGradFromPSU

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I got the car back yesterday. Had them put the car on a lift to visually inspect. Looked dry to me. They replaced the flywheel cover as well since I was missing a retaining screw after visit #2. Will just keep an eye on it over the next few days.

3 Week Update: Engine is still dry so I guess the rear main seal was the culprit.
 


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myexpmky

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Hi there,
Sorry for the long message, I'm just at wits end.
Maybe someone else has had a similar oil leak, and got it resolved...
I will leave out all of the frustration and lack of assistance from Ford motor co. and the dealer, at this point.

We have a 2017 Explorer sport with just over 18000 miles. At around 17000, I noticed a few spots of oil, here and there, on the garage floor. I crawled under the vehicle, and notice the bottom of the engine was wet with oil, mostly centered at the plastc flywheel cover. We took the car to the dealership, and they looked at said it looks like it was the rear main seal.

Repair 1: They replaced the rear main seal (so they stated), and put a little RTC around where the engine meets the transmission. A few days later, the bottom of the engine was wet with oil and a drop or 2 each day ended up on the garage floor. We took the car back to the dealership, they said it looks like the oil is coming from the oil pan.

Repair 2: They pulled the oil pan, resealed it with rtv. They replaced the turbo line seals.
A few days later the bottom of the engine was wet with oil, and a couple of new drops of oil each day on the garage floor. We contacted the dealership, they asked us to drop the car off, so they can address it correctly this time. The wanted take their time and do it right.

Repair 3: We dropped the explorer off on a Tuesday. They explainded to me that ford mo. co. wanted them to check the block to see if there was a leak in one of the oil channels. If there wasl, they were to replace the engine. Over 1 week later later on a Friday, they said that it was the rear-main seal plate (covers the crank). They got the part in then next Monday. I stopped by the dealer and spoke to the technician. I got there just after he had replaced the plate and put the flywheel on. I took a look at the old plate, and it appeared it wasnt fully sealed with rtv. I took their word for it, and headed on my way to work.
3 days later, we got a call to pick up the vechicle. We were assured that they got the leak this time.


Repair4 coming ?....
My wife gets the Explorer on Thursday, drives home (about 8 miles), drives the vehicle to and from work on Friday ( 18 miles total). Sunday Morning, she pulled the Explorer out of the garage, and I noticed a new drop of oil on the floor! I jack up the vehicle, notice the bottom of the eninge is wet with oil (at the seam again between the engine and transmission), centered at the flywheel cover again. I took photos of the leaking, and proceeeded to the dealer on Monday. I showed the service manager the photos, and they where at a loss, quite dumbfounded, and offered no explanation. I understand they tried their best.
They want us to take the car in again. They've had it for a total of 17 days for the past month and a half.

Even if we wanted to leverage the Lemon law, we are out of luck. Ford will not respect the Lemon law,(after hearing from Ford MoCo), becuase we had 18,0012 miles at the time of them repairing it the 3rd time. NY Lemon law is only good for up to 18,0000! miles. If the dealer would offer a replacement vehicle, I do not want to be on the hook to pay the difference.

My wife loved the car, but due to this issue, she doesnt want it now. I'm hoping it can be fixed at least so I can trade it in or sell it.

Question: Has anyone else have had a similar leak, that may have been fixed, for good?


Thank you,
Update.
Its been a while, but I realized I fogot to update. Ford did not repair the vehicle, they purchased it back from us a couple of months after this scenario.
It was, however, after reaching out to someone within Ford Corporate, and endless persistence from my wife.

Thanks.
I am in the same boat you (were in) . My 2017 has the exact same problem as yours had. Pictures look identical . Its in the shop for the fourth, "and last time I might add", but they worked the Oil pan three times, now its the rear seal according to the Ford engineer that brought in. I do not have a warm fuzzy about the rear seal fixing the problem after reading your posts and two other I have read. I should be getting it back early next week, time will tell the story !
 




peterk9

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I am in the same bout you (were in) . My 2017 has the exact same problem as yours had. Pictures look identical . Its in the shop for the fourth, "and last time I might add", but they worked the Oil pan three times, now its the rear seal according to the Ford engineer that brought in. I do not have a warm fuzzy about the rear seal fixing the problem after reading your posts and two other I have read. I should be getting it back early next week, time will tell the story !
Welcome to the Forum.:wave:

Peter
 




DueNorth

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I'm currently dealing with the same issue on my 2017 Explorer XLT. I brought it to the dealership today for the third time in about a year because it was slowly leaking oil. I was just informed that the leak was from a bad rear main. I'm sure they miss diagnosed this problem all along. I'm waiting to hear back from them as to what they are planning on doing. Should I be worried about significant engine damage if this problem was first brought in at 11k miles and now has 23k miles now? Once again, this has been over a year since it was first brought in. Thanks in advance!
 




ISTGradFromPSU

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I will say mine was a very small leak at most... not enough that the engine was running low on oil (i think you would get an oil pressure warning light if it did). On my '17 Explorer V6 N/A, the oil dripped out from behind the flywheel cover, my dealer informed me that no damage would come of that (not sure if they would tell me if there was anyway lol). They dropped the trans and reapplied a silicone seal (Ford decided to do away with rubber seals for both the rear main seal and the oil pan, which is why you are seeing the failure, but they continue to use silicone so not sure if we will be back in the shop in another 10K miles). Good Luck!
 




peterk9

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Welcome to the Forum DueNorth.:wave:
If they are talking about a seal, then seeing as it is a slow leak, and if your oil level was maintained, I don't see any issue regarding engine damage.

Peter
 




KayGee

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I will say mine was a very small leak at most... not enough that the engine was running low on oil (i think you would get an oil pressure warning light if it did). On my '17 Explorer V6 N/A, the oil dripped out from behind the flywheel cover, my dealer informed me that no damage would come of that (not sure if they would tell me if there was anyway lol). They dropped the trans and reapplied a silicone seal (Ford decided to do away with rubber seals for both the real main seal and the oil pan, which is why you are seeing the failure, but they continue to use silicone so not sure if we will be back in the shop in another 10K miles). Good Luck!

You said real main seal in more than one of your posts. What is that?

Do you mean rear main seal? If so, that is not a rubber seal that has been done away, nor is it a seal that can be fixed with a reapplication of silicone.
 




Bobs2018Explorer

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Although my last vehicle (a 2015 Edge Sport) had a 2.7 Ecoboost engine in it, versus the 3.5 you have in your Explorer Sport, I am seeing a possible common thread between your situation and mine.

My Edge's engine had a PLASTIC oil pan on it, that started leaking at 14K miles, and as a result, was in the shop 3 times for repeated repairs (new oil pans, with new RTV sealer, every time)... yet the problem kept recurring. In talking to both the dealership and their corporate service specialists, I was told that Ford had no intention of revamping this engine to use a standard metal oil pan... a change that might have solved the problem. It was at that point that I had finally had enough, and I traded it in for my current 2018 Explorer (a 3.5 with cast ALUMINUM oil pan).

In my case, my 2.7 had a large plastic oil pan bolted to an aluminum engine block. In your case, your 3.5 has an aluminum block/housing with some sort of PLASTIC insert/piece sandwiched between those two metal surfaces, and your pictures appear to show the oil leaking somewhere out of the sides of the sandwiched plastic piece.

Having suffered through a similar process, my theory is this... that PLASTIC has different expansion and contraction characteristics than the surrounding METAL surfaces they're attached to... meaning, as these dissimilar pieces heat up and cool down repeatedly, these different characteristics can eventually result in a failure of the sealing materials used between the mating surfaces... and eventually allowing the oil to seep out.

While my dealership couldn't even begin to tell me why a plastic oil pan was used on a metal-blocked engine... they also could not deny that perhaps my theory was indeed a possible cause for these ongoing problems.

Again, it's just a theory of mine, but maybe food for thought?
 




ISTGradFromPSU

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So the pictures are a little misleading.. that black plastic piece is the flywheel cover.. it isn't sandwiched between too pieces but rather runs up the side

Here are other angles that may show it better

IMG_0611.jpeg


IMG_0608.jpeg


Basically the leak is at the rear main seal but the oil comes out of the flywheel cover (path of least resistance is what I was told).
 




KayGee

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Although my last vehicle (a 2015 Edge Sport) had a 2.7 Ecoboost engine in it, versus the 3.5 you have in your Explorer Sport, I am seeing a possible common thread between your situation and mine.

My Edge's engine had a PLASTIC oil pan on it, that started leaking at 14K miles, and as a result, was in the shop 3 times for repeated repairs (new oil pans, with new RTV sealer, every time)... yet the problem kept recurring. In talking to both the dealership and their corporate service specialists, I was told that Ford had no intention of revamping this engine to use a standard metal oil pan... a change that might have solved the problem. It was at that point that I had finally had enough, and I traded it in for my current 2018 Explorer (a 3.5 with cast ALUMINUM oil pan).

In my case, my 2.7 had a large plastic oil pan bolted to an aluminum engine block. In your case, your 3.5 has an aluminum block/housing with some sort of PLASTIC insert/piece sandwiched between those two metal surfaces, and your pictures appear to show the oil leaking somewhere out of the sides of the sandwiched plastic piece.

Having suffered through a similar process, my theory is this... that PLASTIC has different expansion and contraction characteristics than the surrounding METAL surfaces they're attached to... meaning, as these dissimilar pieces heat up and cool down repeatedly, these different characteristics can eventually result in a failure of the sealing materials used between the mating surfaces... and eventually allowing the oil to seep out.

While my dealership couldn't even begin to tell me why a plastic oil pan was used on a metal-blocked engine... they also could not deny that perhaps my theory was indeed a possible cause for these ongoing problems.

Again, it's just a theory of mine, but maybe food for thought?
"Plastic" oil pans have been around for a long time. As have plastic intake manifolds and valve covers. Proper spec and design will mitigate issues, but $hit happens and sometimes there are failures in parts and/or sealing gaskets/materials.

Please post up the dealership and the personnel you spoke with so others will know who to steer clear of in the future.

Basically the leak is at the rear main seal but the oil comes out of the flywheel cover (path of least resistance is what I was told).
Your vehicle does not have a flywheel - the torque converter is bolted to a flex/drive plate. The plastic cover is an access panel to unbolt the torque converter from the flex/drive plate. Basically there to keep out debris.
 




Turdle

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Ok, for argument sake it's a flywheel. Geez

hidden by the flywheel cover, as named by ford.
 




KayGee

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Ok, for argument sake it's a flywheel. Geez

hidden by the flywheel cover, as named by ford.
No. A flywheel and a flexplate are two completely different things.

Ford parts refers to the "cover" in question as a plug or grommet depending on where you look. It is part 7N171.
 




Bobs2018Explorer

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Thanks for clarifying more on the actual part and its installation position! Again, I still don't know why Ford would insert a plastic "cover" like that, on a metal-structured unit... just seems wrong to me.
 




peterk9

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To help reduce overall vehicle weight?:dunno:
 




peelman

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Just had the rear main seal diagnosed on my 2016 Explorer sport. Parts on order, transmission needs to be dropped to make this repair. Powertrain warranty covers this thank goodness!:chug:
 




18XLT

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Dam I am on round 2 with trying to get my oil leak fixed. 2018 model first started dripping oil around 5,000 miles. Took it in and they removed and re sealed the oil pan. That never worked so now at 10,000 miles its at the dealer and they say it's the rear main seal..... Love the vehicle hate the oil leak
Well dam, 26,000 miles and the leak has returned. What is the possibility of ford replacing the explorer this time?
 




Bobs2018Explorer

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After following this problem (on this thread), I suppose this is exactly why, every time I get under my '18 (3.5L) to do an oil change, I take a look at this particular part to make sure it is still dry... as mine has the same style of little plastic cover on it as well.

As far as "reducing the overall weight of the car"... how much difference can an ounce or two make? LOL!
 




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Hi there,
Sorry for the long message, I'm just at wits end.
Maybe someone else has had a similar oil leak, and got it resolved...
I will leave out all of the frustration and lack of assistance from Ford motor co. and the dealer, at this point.

We have a 2017 Explorer sport with just over 18000 miles. At around 17000, I noticed a few spots of oil, here and there, on the garage floor. I crawled under the vehicle, and notice the bottom of the engine was wet with oil, mostly centered at the plastc flywheel cover. We took the car to the dealership, and they looked at said it looks like it was the rear main seal.

Repair 1: They replaced the rear main seal (so they stated), and put a little RTC around where the engine meets the transmission. A few days later, the bottom of the engine was wet with oil and a drop or 2 each day ended up on the garage floor. We took the car back to the dealership, they said it looks like the oil is coming from the oil pan.

Repair 2: They pulled the oil pan, resealed it with rtv. They replaced the turbo line seals.
A few days later the bottom of the engine was wet with oil, and a couple of new drops of oil each day on the garage floor. We contacted the dealership, they asked us to drop the car off, so they can address it correctly this time. The wanted take their time and do it right.

Repair 3: We dropped the explorer off on a Tuesday. They explainded to me that ford mo. co. wanted them to check the block to see if there was a leak in one of the oil channels. If there wasl, they were to replace the engine. Over 1 week later later on a Friday, they said that it was the rear-main seal plate (covers the crank). They got the part in then next Monday. I stopped by the dealer and spoke to the technician. I got there just after he had replaced the plate and put the flywheel on. I took a look at the old plate, and it appeared it wasnt fully sealed with rtv. I took their word for it, and headed on my way to work.
3 days later, we got a call to pick up the vechicle. We were assured that they got the leak this time.


Repair4 coming ?....
My wife gets the Explorer on Thursday, drives home (about 8 miles), drives the vehicle to and from work on Friday ( 18 miles total). Sunday Morning, she pulled the Explorer out of the garage, and I noticed a new drop of oil on the floor! I jack up the vehicle, notice the bottom of the eninge is wet with oil (at the seam again between the engine and transmission), centered at the flywheel cover again. I took photos of the leaking, and proceeeded to the dealer on Monday. I showed the service manager the photos, and they where at a loss, quite dumbfounded, and offered no explanation. I understand they tried their best.
They want us to take the car in again. They've had it for a total of 17 days for the past month and a half.

Even if we wanted to leverage the Lemon law, we are out of luck. Ford will not respect the Lemon law,(after hearing from Ford MoCo), becuase we had 18,0012 miles at the time of them repairing it the 3rd time. NY Lemon law is only good for up to 18,0000! miles. If the dealer would offer a replacement vehicle, I do not want to be on the hook to pay the difference.

My wife loved the car, but due to this issue, she doesnt want it now. I'm hoping it can be fixed at least so I can trade it in or sell it.

Question: Has anyone else have had a similar leak, that may have been fixed, for good?


Thank you,
Our 2016 Ford explorer sport is also leaking oil. Found out today after oil change. The vehicle only have 33K miles. Took the vehicle to the dealership and they want $$$ to repair as it is about 3 months out of warranty. Curious to what your plans. Very frustrating.
 




peelman

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Our 2016 Ford explorer sport is also leaking oil. Found out today after oil change. The vehicle only have 33K miles. Took the vehicle to the dealership and they want $$$ to repair as it is about 3 months out of warranty. Curious to what your plans. Very frustrating.
Where is the leak coming from?
 


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peterk9

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Our 2016 Ford explorer sport is also leaking oil. Found out today after oil change. The vehicle only have 33K miles. Took the vehicle to the dealership and they want $$$ to repair as it is about 3 months out of warranty. Curious to what your plans. Very frustrating.
Welcome to the Forum. :wave:
As asked by peelman, can you tell where the leak is coming from? Are you sure it wasn't spilled oil from the oil change you just had done? If it is a very slow leak is it worth the repair cost? Did you notice any oil on the ground before was done?

Peter
 




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