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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Oil seems to be coming out of the bellhousing, not sure if it's trans oil or engine oil. Clutch is sometimes weak/slippy. Oil is black and burnt on the ground, oil on dipstick is fine. Either rear main seal or trans leaking into bellhousing? Need possible causes and to know whether or not this car is safe to drive (as in, won't do any catastrophic damage by driving). Not sure what has caused it. Back of intake/block and top of bellhousing is dry. See pics. Thanks.



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1990 Ford Mustang LX 351M powered!! Project Cherry Bomb!!
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Upper driver's side bell housing bolt... Pull it out, put sealant on it and put it back in.. that bolt goes into the lifter valley and if it's not got sealant on it will cause a leak into the bell housing.. try that first, it's the easiest fix first before pulling anything apart..
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Upper driver's side bell housing bolt... Pull it out, put sealant on it and put it back in.. that bolt goes into the lifter valley and if it's not got sealant on it will cause a leak into the bell housing.. try that first, it's the easiest fix first before pulling anything apart..
Thanks. I'll try anything before pulling this engine out

EDIT: any other bellhousing bolts need the same thing or just that one?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Bolt was not tight at all. Wouldn't come out all the way (firewall) but I covered it in sealant and sent it home as tight as I could make it with a box end wrench. Idled it, no more leaking as yet...we'll see what happens when I drive it tomorrow
 

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1990 Ford Mustang LX 351M powered!! Project Cherry Bomb!!
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Got a pic of the offending bolt and the back China wall from the inside so you can see what I was taking about....
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It's on the upper right in the photo... Right above one of the oil drainbacks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It's still at it. I don't think the bolt was the cause, unless I have so much residual oil in the bellhousing that the clutch it kicking it up and out the clutch fork hole and the threaded hole above it. See pics.

EDIT: my questions are, if it's the rear main, is there any way to confirm before removing trans and pan? Do those "stop leak" bottles work? What caused this in the first place? Just some high rpm pulls on an old rebuild or is it something more serious like crank walk?

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
My best guess is it's just worn out. Bearings are probably worn, letting the crank move around and vibrate, and the seal is old. I don't think there was some kind of crazy failure. I've owned the car for a long time and it was an older rebuild when I got it. Broke a pushrod once, lost a lifter, and drove it several miles without much oil pressure (I was 17). I'm sure that's catching up to me now
 

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Stop leak doesn't work. It doesn't matter if it's rear main, or front of the trans. Ensure the back of the intake isn't leaking or the OPS. Once you're sure it's not that, pull the trans and change them both. In either situation, the fix is the same for me. I'm not doing one without the other personally.Also replace that clutch and resurface the flywheel...I'm sure it's pretty well soaked.
 

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Unless you've got a drop in oil pressure your bearings should be ok. I know it's a lotta work, but since you're gonna have to do a clutch job anyhoo that'll give ya's a good time to spec everything out back there and see if you can tell where it's actually coming from... I'm still thinking it may be that bolt since you found it loose, it could have been loose for some time filling up the bell housing and now you've just got a mess to clean up afterwards?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Unless you've got a drop in oil pressure your bearings should be ok. I know it's a lotta work, but since you're gonna have to do a clutch job anyhoo that'll give ya's a good time to spec everything out back there and see if you can tell where it's actually coming from... I'm still thinking it may be that bolt since you found it loose, it could have been loose for some time filling up the bell housing and now you've just got a mess to clean up afterwards?
Meanwhile, I'll shop for a clutch. Anyone care to recommend one for a 460+Toploader? Everything is stock spec in the driveline
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
HI that's all full black... I'd almost say it transmission fluid... if it was motor oil and coming out the clutch fork hole the clutch would be effected , chattering, jumping when letting it out.. i think its transmission fluid..

good luck take care be safe
tim
Interesting. The only clutch symptom I have is slipping. I feel dumb not to have mentioned this before, I changed the trans fluid about a month ago, is it possible I overfilled it? The trans is not in the greatest shape, pretty noisy, etc

EDIT: i used a GL-4 gear oil, 80W-90 i think. This wouldn't cause the motor oil contamination symptoms you talked about?
 

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Just looked it up, about 2 qts is the refill on your tranny. That should be your ballpark on if you overfilled it? And that's the recommended oil for it...
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Just looked it up, about 2 qts is the refill on your tranny. That should be your ballpark on if you overfilled it? And that's the recommended oil for it...
I emptied it and refilled it through the fill hole, and it's impossible to overfill that way, I remember it spilling out until it was at the level of the hole

Tomorrow I'll see if I can tell from the oil puddle whether it's engine oil or the GL-4, which might still be greenish as well as jet black lol
 
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