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MG MGF Technical - Cam Shaft Oil Seal

Girlfriend came round and said car is leaking oil badly again

Took engine cover off and then timing belt cover and can see that its coming from the right cam shaft oil seal - well one wheel is dry and the other soaked in oil and when engine is run it is splashing out of there behind the wheel

whats this job like to do?? i'll prob get garage to do this but any ideas how long this takes etc
Would you get both seals changed while in there or leave non leaking one alone??

oil was spraying out from behind wheel and running down timing case and dripping onto sump and sump plug

its really pouring out now couldnt drive as it is so will have to tow to garage

Is there anything that could cause the seal to fail? I still think garage that did HG and cam belts in April must have disturbed it but dont really trust them to do anymore work on car so would rather pay someone else to do it for peace of mind!

sorry for long thread!

L Taylor

You say that the Garage replaced the HG last month, if they had the head skimmed then they will have stripped the head and removed/ replaced the seals, once re-assmebled with new seals it's not uncommon for them to leak if they are not fitted square.

I have replaced seals before but it's a b*gger of a job. The cam belt has to come off, and then the pulleys need to be removed. The really fun bit is getting the old seal out, it's possible to do it with a fine screw driver but you have to be careful not to damage the machined surface which the seal goes into! Once the old seal is out you'll need a large socket (sorry can't remember the size) to drift the new seal into the socket, making sure it goes in square.

Then it's time to put the pulleys back on and then muck about re-fitting the cam belt.

All told it can take a couple of hours, if you know what you're doing, otherwise it can be more like 4-6 hours!

I'm not too sure if this help you at all...



Thanks - i wasnt going to do the work myself but the more i look at it (i downloaded a good manual) the more i am considering it... would have to buy cam gear locking tool

I'll get couple of quotes first as if not too much then i'll keep my hands clean!

really the garage that have messed with the seals should do it but i dont know if i want them touching it more even though would save money....

is there anything that could cause seal to go - ie blocked breather pipe?? i'm going to check them tonight just in case - i did pull one off while looking on saturday and looked ok but was only quick look - no oil in air filter either

just want to get her back on the road asap (bad weather has softened the blow for her at least!)


L Taylor

My guess is that the seal has fallen out of the housing, I have had this before on my other car (Peugeot) after doing a cylinder head overhaul. I think my mistake was oiling the outside of the seal to make it easier to fit. Apparently it made the thing so slippery that it gradually worked its way out of the housing under engine vibrations and slight crank case pressure (even though it was a pretty tight fit). So, if you change the seal yourself, make sure the housing is completely dry and only lubricate the inner lip of the new seal.
J Nuttgens

Took car into garage yesterday - they said that the seal looked like it had been pushed in with a screwdriver

will get car back this afternoon so will post again with final conclusion (hopefully!)

thanks for all suggestions

L Taylor

Well got price - its come to 195.64 for oil seal, new cam belt and litre of magnatec - sound fair??

I also got suspension pumped for 40 - prob could have done myself but would never have got round to it - it was pretty low i couldnt even get a jack underneath last weekend!

Anyway hope this sorts it for a while!! (fingers crossed)

L Taylor

Probably not bad, given that this represents a fair amount of work and man-hours :o)

Fingers crossed for the car! :o)
Rob Bell

This thread was discussed between 29/05/2007 and 06/06/2007

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