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Hello folks, had my car in for it's 80k service today and they're telling me there's a large oil leak from the front of the engine on the vvti housing/cover. They said it's going to be 8 hours + for labour to sort it. However, my car had an engine rebuild 19k miles ago (just over two years) where at that point they would have had to remove and replace this cover as it had a new block and pistons, right? The chap said the new engine is only warranted for 12 months so this wouldn't cover it.

I did a little searching online and found there is a TSIB for this issue but on 2006 models (mine is early '08 registered).

What do you think guys, has anyone else had this? Shall I push for the dealer to either apply to Lexus GB to cover costs or help me out themselves, they did say because i'm on a service plan they would help with labour costs but it will still be £800 + (estimated!)



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  • 4 weeks later...

It's the timing chain cover, I believe? Could the identify the exact spot on the housing? Is it the sealant on the cover edge or a gasket or is the cover broken? That shouldn't happen just like that. It's either the mechanic assembling the engine back didn't put the sealant right, or they reused some gasket that was damaged on removal (a new one should hold for way longer) or the cover is broken, scratched or dented (it needs to be pried off using screwdrivers), none of which is due to tear and wear or your fault.

It's only moderately time consuming, for all I can tell. You can check the service manual online yourself and see what exactly needs to be done. They would have to change the oil (normally, the filter too) though, so that might make it a bit more expensive.

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We're a bit late on the replies and the guy has probably had it done by now but going on the location I would suggest it's a camshaft oil seal failure.

I doubt these were replaced during the engine rebuild as the original cylinder head would probably have been refitted so would be considered a seperate "wear and tear" issue, no mention of the total mileage the car has covered.

I don't know where the price comes from but if it is just the oil seals it seems rather high but there again it is Lexus.

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Steve, you are probably right. That's the most likely place to sport a leak. That part is non-reusable, so they must have had replaced it. I think it has a metal core that gets bent when the part is removed. The seal should be around 20 EUR, so it would really be a shame if they put the old one back in. Eight hours of labour sounds reasonable. What would an hour in Lexus normally service be? If it's 50 GBP, it's 400 for labour, 20-ish for the part, and probably the rest is for the oil and the filter, and possibly some coolant, but it still sounds a bit expensive. If it weren't for the pulley that has to be removed with a special tool to get to the seal, I'd say any mechanic could do it.

I hope we'll get to know what the problem was and how it got solved. :)

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Thanks for getting back to me folks, I haven't had the issue looked at yet just keeping a close eye on my oil level. I can't actually see the oil leak from the top of the engine so i'm guessing they've spotted it with the undertray off? The mileage on the car now is 78k, the rebuild was done at 58k, two and a half years ago.

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Well, it looks like you'll have to pay for the repairs, but before they start ask them what exactly the problem is and what exactly needs to be replaced. Good luck and be careful about it.

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Why was the engine rebuilt? Did they explain? Given you are on a service plan, the cost should be way lower. I had a 06 is250 since birth and has not developed such faults, and I do not remember recall notices for work on the engine. Maybe get a second opinion from another dealer, or an ndependent Lexus service garage? Good luck with it

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