Oil Leak Repair Cost

Reader Question

Hello, thanks for taking my question. I have an older Ford F150 V8 and the valve cover gaskets are leaking oil. Can you tell me an approximate cost to repair this oil leak please?



Hi there Ralph,

If you were in my shop in Houston TX I would charge you about $275 to replace both valve cover gaskets and the PCV valve.

The PCV (positive crankcase ventilation) is what allows the engine to breath and over time it gets all gummed up with junk which builds up internal pressure on the engine.

This internal pressure is what causes seals gaskets and oil rings to leak.

Have your mechanic check the PVC system and make sure it is functioning properly.

What I see happen MANY MANY times is people repair 1 oil leak, and 2-3 others pop up later on. It can be a loosing game trying to seal an older engine that has too much internal pressure due to PCV problems.

In your case you can also use a thicker weight engine oil which will help slow down oil leaks.  You can use Castrol 20W-50 for this vehicle without an issue and should really help reduce oil consumption and leaking.

Hope that helps


Austin Davis



Posted in: Oil Leaks

About the Author:

Austin Davis, consumer car repair advocate. "Hi there! I love to help people solve their car repair problems and I hope my site was helpful to you today. Thank you for stopping by."
  • Austin Davis


    Thanks for your kind words. Hummmmm, My HONEST opinion and suggestion to you is get a second opinion from a local Audi dealership, and maybe even a third. Most of the general mechanics that I deal with would not be very trained in working on an Audi electrical problem.

    This is a significant amount of money they are talking about so it would be well worth the $100 diagnostic fee from an Audi dealer to tell you exactly what is happening here. I would bet this mechanic is taking a wild guess at the problem and hoping that a $3K repair estimate will get you to go away somewhere else.

    I don’t know if this is a dangerous condition or not, engine oil can catch on fire….but pretty rare. I would not put this off to long as running the engine low on oil can do more damage costing a lot more money.

    I would also ask the dealership to look the rest of the vehicle over for you and give you an idea of any other repairs that might be needed in the near future so you can plan for them…or unload this vehicle now and take a small loss but significantly cut your longer term losses.

    I have never been a fan of Audi, and recommend Japanese vehicles to my customers seeking to buy a used or new car. Just too many problems with them and not enough Audi mechanics who really know about these vehicles to take the risk.

  • Rona

    Hello Austin

    Thank you for your time answering everyone’s questions.
    I have a question for you:
    I have bought a 2008 audi Q7 did the purchaser inspection and came in very good condition except needed new tires (mimor).
    Couple month later, I got the check engine yellow light on the dash and noticed when I took it for an oil change that it had oil underneath the engine on the plate under the car which I never noticed on the garage floor.
    So now the mechanic ran a scan and find out the the manifold flaps on rank 1&2 needs to be fixed as well as a leak (they don’t know where it is from until they take the engine apart), random misfire and whole bunch of things associated with .
    Now, I’m going crazy as I just bought the car assuming, according to the inspections all is good and now I have to pay another bill north of $3000 to have it fixed!!
    so my question is how do I know what is really wrong with my car and how do I find out where is the leak coming from? (do I check the oil level or coolant ,…? what do I look for or check?
    and second is it dangerous for me and my family to keep driving it until I got it fixed?
    I haven’t noticed much difference while driving it (I never had to jump start or it doesn’t turn off, no weird noises, just the oil leak under the engine rather dark, and yellow engine light on the dash which is still there.

    Thank you so much for taking the time to go through my question and I hope you will be able to help.


  • Austin Davis

    George, I would replace both valve cover gaskets with new ones along with the PCV valve. Those form-a-gasket sealers really don’t work very well in my opinion.

  • George J.

    Hi Austin, I wanted to ask you if it would be cheaper to repair it or simply change both valve cover gaskets and the PCV valve, I am thinking of a long term solution that would in the end save me money, even if I spend more right now, thanks!

  • Austin Davis

    Thanks for your comment Helen, yes using a thicker weight engine oil is a pretty easy and cheap way to help slow down oil consumption.

  • Helen G.

    Our old pickup has a small leak (was repaired but just like you said another one pops up later) and our mechanic gave us the tip of using the heavier oil as well:) Working pretty well. We check our oil frequently now too to make sure that it doesn’t get any worse or run out. As always, thanks for your great tips:)