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Old 09-08-2012, 05:36 AM   #1
mxn5ter
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Question timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

New to this forum, my buddy has a '01 malibu and it has a hole in the timing cover, thus it is leaking. The deal for him is if he can fix it he can have it. How complicated is the gasket job for this and how much would a new timing cover cost? Also, aside fro a JY where could one be sourced? I'm used to working on escort gt's miatas and 350 small locks, but never a v6 besides a vg30de. Any advice is appreciated on price and difficulty, also if anyone has done this, steps to do so would be greatly appreciated. Thanks guys (and gals).
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Old 09-08-2012, 05:41 AM   #2
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

If it's as simple as a gasket then that should answer itself by just replacing it. Sounds, though, like there is actually a hole in the cover that the gasket doesn't seal. If the hole is not where it has to support another accessory then you might try JB Weld or something similar. If the hole is so large that that is undesirable or impractical then you might be able to source a replacement at Rock Auto. They are reported by other members to be very good on prices and service - a rare combination!
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Old 09-08-2012, 06:06 AM   #3
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

Dealership or junkyard for the cover itself.

Due to the fact that it's where the "front" (passenger side of car) motor mount mounts, I'd HIGHLY recommend a replacement.

Actually, since it looks like it's easier to pull the motor to replace it than do it in the body, I'd consider pulling a K-member with motor and tranny out of an Alero or same-gen Grand Am (to get the 3400!), rebuilding it, and stuffing that into the Malibu. Or at the least, go ahead and do the head / LIM gaskets that are more prone to leakage on this motor (the 3100 V6).

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335K miles on original motor and tranny (only motor work 2 x LIM replacement), Monroe SensaTrac struts front and back (new at approx. 300K miles), and Alero discs in back. LS fogs added with custom wiring. HID high beams, HIR low and halogen fogs. Raybestos Pro Grade front rotors and Bendix D747 ceramic pads on front.

Addendum: Rest in peace. Surge tank blew, motor overheated, I think she's lived a long and useful life.
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Old 09-08-2012, 06:50 AM   #4
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

Most appreciate the quick responses. I work with my buddy and he is due back into the office soon. We're both gravers and I will pick his brain for specifics and post up in, say, about 15 minutes or so. thanks again!
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Old 09-08-2012, 07:16 AM   #5
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

My buddy also says that the timing cover is leaking water like a mofo.
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Old 09-08-2012, 10:13 AM   #6
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

Huh. I'd have to look, but don't remember the 3100 having water through the timing cover.

I'd more bet the LIM gaskets leaking at the "front" of the motor all over the timing chain cover.

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335K miles on original motor and tranny (only motor work 2 x LIM replacement), Monroe SensaTrac struts front and back (new at approx. 300K miles), and Alero discs in back. LS fogs added with custom wiring. HID high beams, HIR low and halogen fogs. Raybestos Pro Grade front rotors and Bendix D747 ceramic pads on front.

Addendum: Rest in peace. Surge tank blew, motor overheated, I think she's lived a long and useful life.
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Old 09-09-2012, 03:12 AM   #7
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

I had a '97 Grand Prix with the 3100. (I know, hard to believe, but it was 7% of the engines that year, while 17% were the 3800 super-charged, and 76% were the 3800 air breather.) I was leaking coolant every time I turned around. Fix one and another would leak, fix it and another would leak. Problem is it was all those @#$@% devices on top of the engine, not the LIM or other gaskets, and it was right in the middle of an extremely cold spell (20 overnight, barely freezing daytime) so I was driving with no heater and no way to defrost the windshield except by using up all my washer fluid. Had to drive with the windows down to keep the inside from fogging up. 2 weeks of that and I "traded" it in on my '09 'Bu. Sure was nice to have heat, and on top of that I had heated seats, too!

Anyway, the LIM is pretty common from what I read about the 3100's. Listen to RalphP and he'll guide you well.
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'11 LTZ, born Aug 2010, Fairfax, KS

V6/A6, Red Jewel Tintcoat / Cocoa-Cashmere, Sunroof
Mods: WeatherTech mats, CHMSL Pulser

How-to: LEDs in mirrors :: How-to: 1-Wipe Wash
How-to: Remote express windows up/down


Traded: '09 2LT Black Granite Metallic V6 / A6 at 20,058 miles
Lost: '11 LTZ RJT V6 / A6 in flood at 44K miles
Muffler mod on '09
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Old 09-09-2012, 05:34 AM   #8
mxn5ter
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

LIM being the lower intake mani gasket?
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Old 09-09-2012, 05:55 AM   #9
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

Yah, sorry - LIM is Lower Intake Manifold gasket.

UIM is Upper, natch, but to get to the lower you'll do the upper.

If it actually IS from the timing cover, as I stated earlier, I'd seriously consider a 3400 rebuild instead of the 3100 - it's a bore/stroke version, mounts the same, can even keep your 3100 upper intake for stealth, and you can buy a ECU that knows it's a 3400 mail order .. https://www.mpracing.org/store/1997-...d-ecu/pcm.html

Note: Never used their ECU, don't know how good they do, but it's out there.

RwP
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335K miles on original motor and tranny (only motor work 2 x LIM replacement), Monroe SensaTrac struts front and back (new at approx. 300K miles), and Alero discs in back. LS fogs added with custom wiring. HID high beams, HIR low and halogen fogs. Raybestos Pro Grade front rotors and Bendix D747 ceramic pads on front.

Addendum: Rest in peace. Surge tank blew, motor overheated, I think she's lived a long and useful life.
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Old 09-09-2012, 05:58 AM   #10
mxn5ter
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Default Re: timing cover leak, how difficult to tackle?

Buddy is looking to fix this one up and trade it in for a newer one so, getting this one fixed without hitting a shop for $800 is the key ;D UIM must be done while going after LIM?
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