Cam cover oil leak warning

v8hgt

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Hi all.
I spotted something recently on another group about the 10mm bolts holding the cam covers on being loose resulting in oil seepage onto the header. Whilst under the bonnet I decided to check my car and discovered the same issue on the passenger side header. The official ford TSB
https://ford.oemdtc.com/4759/5-0l-oil-leaks-from-valve-cover-gasket-2015-2017-ford-mustang
is an interesting one, go check the covers and you will see what I mean. It looks like ford cast 13 threaded holes into each cylinder head to attach the cam covers. They then designed a mould with 13 matching bolt locations. Then for some reason they only perforated 8 of the locations with a hole leaving the others blanked off (presumable to cut cost on bolts). The TSB tells you to remove the covers, drill through the other tabs, buy some bolts and reinstall with new gaskets.
Not having several hrs of free time I decided to just try nipping up the existing bolts and see if that stopped the small leak. I discovered that 2 bolts on the passenger side could be removed with my fingers. Probably never tightened during the build. So I tightened them all up to about 7NM as best I could. (one can't be reached without removing the battery box so I left that.)

On Saturday it went in for its 4 yr service which included spark plug change. The mechanic discovered some oil down 2 of the plug holes on the passenger side, and mentioned it to me as I had requested to see all 8 plugs for this reason.


Note: Oil on the tops of the plugs is VERY bad. and here is why.... The tops of the plugs get very hot, especially when sitting in an oil bath. Eventually the heat and oil will cause the plug to disintegrate and the middle will drop down through the metal threaded part into the cylinder. I know this because previously I had a Ducati that had exactly the same (expensive) problem. The plug oil seal in the cam cover had been nipped during the assembly causing oil to fill the hole. After a couple of thousand miles the plug dropped the middle straight through the piston resulting in an engine rebuild, new piston, new head, new barrel etc.

Im going to run it for a bit then pop the coil packs off and check for oil again with a tissue. If it find any I will have to do the TSB myself.

This is a known coyote build problem with a TSB to address it. To check yours, wait till cold, then get your hand down onto the cylinder head just above the headers on each side and run your fingers along the aluminium casting. If It feels slippery you probably have the same issue. Check the tightness of the 10mm bolts holding the cam covers on. A couple are hard to reach. Failing that, request ford fix it properly if you are still within the 3 yr warranty period. see TSB above.

 

Silver Dragon

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Hi all.
I spotted something recently on another group about the 10mm bolts holding the cam covers on being loose resulting in oil seepage onto the header. Whilst under the bonnet I decided to check my car and discovered the same issue on the passenger side header. The official ford TSB
https://ford.oemdtc.com/4759/5-0l-oil-leaks-from-valve-cover-gasket-2015-2017-ford-mustang
is an interesting one, go check the covers and you will see what I mean. It looks like ford cast 13 threaded holes into each cylinder head to attach the cam covers. They then designed a mould with 13 matching bolt locations. Then for some reason they only perforated 8 of the locations with a hole leaving the others blanked off (presumable to cut cost on bolts). The TSB tells you to remove the covers, drill through the other tabs, buy some bolts and reinstall with new gaskets.
Not having several hrs of free time I decided to just try nipping up the existing bolts and see if that stopped the small leak. I discovered that 2 bolts on the passenger side could be removed with my fingers. Probably never tightened during the build. So I tightened them all up to about 7NM as best I could. (one can't be reached without removing the battery box so I left that.)

On Saturday it went in for its 4 yr service which included spark plug change. The mechanic discovered some oil down 2 of the plug holes on the passenger side, and mentioned it to me as I had requested to see all 8 plugs for this reason.


Note: Oil on the tops of the plugs is VERY bad. and here is why.... The tops of the plugs get very hot, especially when sitting in an oil bath. Eventually the heat and oil will cause the plug to disintegrate and the middle will drop down through the metal threaded part into the cylinder. I know this because previously I had a Ducati that had exactly the same (expensive) problem. The plug oil seal in the cam cover had been nipped during the assembly causing oil to fill the hole. After a couple of thousand miles the plug dropped the middle straight through the piston resulting in an engine rebuild, new piston, new head, new barrel etc.

Im going to run it for a bit then pop the coil packs off and check for oil again with a tissue. If it find any I will have to do the TSB myself.

This is a known coyote build problem with a TSB to address it. To check yours, wait till cold, then get your hand down onto the cylinder head just above the headers on each side and run your fingers along the aluminium casting. If It feels slippery you probably have the same issue. Check the tightness of the 10mm bolts holding the cam covers on. A couple are hard to reach. Failing that, request ford fix it properly if you are still within the 3 yr warranty period. see TSB above.
When I was down at GT101 two weeks ago having my loose cam cover bolts tightened(the leak was on the passenger side) I spoke to David about the relevant TSB and whether they had ever had to carry that out.
As I remember he said that in his experience he found that tightening the existing bolts cured the problem.

So it seems more than likely that your tightening will do the trick.

On a related topic I cleaned the oil patch off the drive with some Surf , hot water and plenty of Bank Holiday rain and gales.
 

Gloucesternige

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This is a brilliant thread!! Thanks Nick.

I am sick and tired of witnessing/hearing about or reading stories like this where manufacturers are penny pinching to meet targets handed down by accountants who care nothing about product reliability or quality. As an Engineer having worked in Aerospace, Automotive and Medical manufacture, I have seen it worsen over the years. A designer designed the plastic cam cover with a requirement for 13 fixings, then some accountant idiot decided the designer was wrong!

I'll bet no one at Ford is calculating the cost of the TSB vs the cost saving of supplying and fitting 10 bolts to each engine? No.. the saving is accredited to the idiot who had the idea, the TSB cost is passed on to manufacturing of future production.. so the customer pays.

I guess this explains why my Raptor has 4 outstanding recalls on it in only 8 months? Effing JUNK!!

GGRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:curse::curse::curse::curse::curse::curse::curse::curse:

Admin.. I feel this thread should be "locked" to the top of the list so all can see it.
 
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v8hgt

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FYI ive tightened up all the bolts on mine and cleaned the side of the block with degreaser. I am now monitoring it regularly for any sign of oil on the block above the exhaust manifolds, and down the plug holes.
I have also figured out that taking the cam covers off isn't that hard in the end. You just need to remove the battery and battery tray first, if it comes to it.
 

Gloucesternige

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FYI ive tightened up all the bolts on mine and cleaned the side of the block with degreaser. I am now monitoring it regularly for any sign of oil on the block above the exhaust manifolds, and down the plug holes.
I have also figured out that taking the cam covers off isn't that hard in the end. You just need to remove the battery and battery tray first, if it comes to it.
Thanks Nick. I wonder if a dab of blue thread locker on the bolts would help them stay put and not come loose again?
 


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v8hgt

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Thanks Nick. I wonder if a dab of blue thread locker on the bolts would help them stay put and not come loose again?
It’s worth a crack. I suspect post leak, the threads are now coated in oil which will prevent the thread lock really doing it’s job, but it may make them slightly less prone to coming out again. One day when I put the whipple on I will do the tsb properly and clean out all the threads, drill out the plastic tabs for 13 bolts per side etc. In the mean time I will just check it every couple of thousand miles.
 

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Tightened mine up today, pretty much all of them were lose - no oil, just precautionary.
To get to the rear bolts you have to remove the strut and cowl brace and passenger side remove the battery, the battery holder and unbolt a metal plate that will give you full access to the back of the engine
Any specs on the bolts to use ?
 

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Gloucesternige

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I've just noticed the TSB states we should leave the rear hole blanked??
 
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v8hgt

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Using a system of 2 UJ’s on the socket set I managed to get to all of them without taking the battery tray out. Now I feel double jointed! Far simpler to take the tray out to be honest. It’s not going to hurt drinking out that last tab if there’s a hole under it.
 

Gloucesternige

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It’s not going to hurt drinking out that last tab if there’s a hole under it.
That's what I was thinking. There's certainly a lug on the head. looking at pics of coyote heads?
Maybe they tried to save the cost of two bolts on the tsb??? lol.
 

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Thanks for flagging this, just checked the ones I could see and 2 were loose, something to add to the maintenance list lol good find, this will help lots of people nip it in the bud early on before anything bad happens
 
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v8hgt

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I suspect it applies to all model yrs of GT. It would appear to be mainly down to an inability to tighten bolts correctly in the factory as the workers obviously don’t give a damn. The newer cars are made in the same facility by the same staff.
 

Kylemacca01

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I suspect it applies to all model yrs of GT. It would appear to be mainly down to an inability to tighten bolts correctly in the factory as the workers obviously don’t give a damn. The newer cars are made in the same facility by the same staff.
The comms from ford suggest only 2015-17, but worth checking i guess.
 

 
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