Mark: Hi, it’s Mark from Top Local, we’re here with Bernie Pawlik, we’re going to talk cars. So we’re talking about a 2007 Audi Q7 that had an engine oil leak repair. How’re you going Bernie?
Bernie: I’m doing really well this morning.
Mark: So what was going on with this Audi SUV?
Bernie: Well this vehicle came to us with an engine oil leak and it was quite an oil leak when the engine, with the engine running there’d be, every minute there’d be a, maybe every couple minutes there’d be a drip on the ground, so it was a pretty substantial leak. Did a diagnostic and we found that the leak was coming from the upper engine oil pan.
Mark: Ok, that sounds like a pretty serious leaking problem, what was involved in fixing it?
Bernie: There’s a lot involved and actually you’re right, it is a pretty serious leak. Serious in terms of the complexity of the leak and also the complexity of the repair. The upper oil pan basically requires removing the engine from the vehicle and dismantling an awful lot of the engine just to make the oil pan off to make the repair.
Mark: Ok, that sounds a little extreme. Is the oil pan gasket a typical gasket that seals the entire bottom end of the vehicle?
Bernie: No, it’s a little different and this is kind of common on modern engine technology. The parts are aluminum so they fit the pan together with, usually a high quality, I wouldn’t call it silicone, but it’s like a silicone type sealer, it’s form of gasket material and then any areas of crucial oil flow, they’ll put O rings. So there’s 4 O rings and then the rest of it is this silicone type sealer, a special type sealer which they use in a number of gaskets, the timing chain covers, the lower oil pan is the same thing but that’s how most modern engines are sealed now a days. The typical big, huge gasket or well in the olden days or a cork gasket, those are long gone now.
Mark: So does it really need to be so complicated?
Bernie: Well I don’t know if it needs to be but it is. When you’re driving an Audi, people buy them because you want the performance, you want the fuel economy and of course, emissions on engines, it’s just created a storm of complication but the good news is you can hop in your vehicle still in cold, runs great, works perfectly, the performance cold and hot is the same, where if you go back 20 or 30 years ago with carbureted engines, you’d be stalling and stumbling until the engine warmed up. So not to mention the amount of pollutants you put out. So there’s a lot of complexity. I’m going to share some photos here, we’ve got lots of them to look at so, let’s start with, here’s our oil leak, you see that ok Mark? Perfect. Ok so this is a view of the bottom of the engine looking up, this area over here, this is the crankshaft pulley and the serpentine drive belt and right where the red arrow is pointing, that’s where our oil leak was coming from. So this assembly right here, this is the upper engine oil pan and down here’s the lower oil pan. The lower oil pan by the way can be replaced inside the vehicle but the upper is a much more deeply buried component let’s say. So that’s where our leak was. This is what we viewed in the engine once we pull the engine out, this is another view of, kind of head on, this is a seam of the upper oil pain right here and so that where, again you can see the leak. The oil pouring down out of here, down here, as the engine was running. So let’s look at the complexity. There’s the back view of the engine. These are the timing chains of the engine. I mean, this is like a really really complicated set up, a lot of bits and pieces. Fortunately for our client, everything seems to be in pretty good order but there are a lot of parts and pieces that can wear here, a lot of money. So basically here is the crankshaft, so this is where it all starts turning from. You’ve got chains here driving the oil pump drive, then you’ve got chains here, this is the main chain that drives the camshaft gears and then you’ve got chains that drive the camshafts and these are the variable valve timing phasers, there are solenoids up here. So there’s a lot that goes into this to make this engine rune like the beautiful engine it does, but as you can see, there’s a lot of complexity here. What else have we got here, there’s a view of the vehicle, to pull this engine out, you basically pull the whole front cradle out, the transmission, the transfer case and the engine so that’s the assembly sitting on jack stands after it’s removed and the body of the vehicle is sitting up above. Almost looks like a Ford 6 Litre type of jobs that we do. Now one common, oh so here’s our lower engine oil pan, so this is what the unit looks like cleaned up and mostly cleaned up and ready to be reinstalled. Very precise piece of machine, you know precision machine piece of equipment. And yeah, so now one area of problem on these Audi’s, these engines are fairly reliable but there’s one engine, one problem area and that is the intake manifold. They’re inside the intake manifold there are runners to change the airflow inside the intake manifold, again this is what gives the engine the performance that it has. There’s a set of runners here, right by the intake ports, there’s a set of runners here and then inside the manifold is a set of runners that change as well. There’s actuators over here which are electronically controlled and when we took this manifold out, there’s actually some broken pieces that fell out, fortunately they never fell into the engine, we were able to retrieve them, but these are, this is part of the flapper inside the manifold that’s broken. This is actually a fairly common breakage problem on these engines. Sometimes it can result in pieces actually falling into the engine and causing problems. So this is something we’ll have to address with this repair. It’s expensive, unfortunately you have to buy a complete manifold and the part can only be purchased from Audi. So there’s a view of the complexity, some of the things, one of the things that goes wrong, a couple of things and there we have it.
Mark: So looking at the back end of that engine, kind of reminded me of a throwback to looking at an old V12 Ferrari engine with dual overhead cams.
Bernie: Yeah, same complexity, you don’t need, you can have that same level of complexity even in a Kia nowadays.
Mark: So how are these vehicles overall?
Bernie: They’re pretty good, I mean they, it’s an Audi, it more expensive to maintain of course, things that that wear out faster than you’ll find in a lot of other cars, it’s big, uses a fair bit of fuel, very nice vehicle, overall pretty reliable but there are some areas of issues and we’re going to discuss that in a future hangout.
Mark: Alright, so we’ve been talking with Mr. Bernie Pawlik, Pawlik Automotive in Vancouver. If you need service on your Audi from experts who know what they’re doing, so Pawlik Automotive 604-327-7112 or check out their website pawlikautomotive.com. Thank you
Bernie: Thanks Mark