CarTalk.com Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

1996 Toyota Camry

I have a 1996 Toyota Camry it has a small leak-from the “Rear Main Seal” Very expensive to repair $800
I cant afford that at this time. My question is has anyone tried this product as temporary fix or know
if it works? Would it damage other car parts? " Blue Devil Rear Main Seal Stop Leak and Conditioner"
Any information would be helpful. Thanks

Products like this are usually just a crutch but it certainly won’t hurt anything by giving it a shot.
Before buying any product or replacing a rear main seal check the PCV valve and make sure that it’s not stuck or gummed up. This is cheap and easy to fix if need be and a stuck PCV can cause seal leaks due to the engine crankcase pressuring up.

If the rear main is leaking with a good PCV then the product you mentioned may help stop or slow down a seal leak by softening and swelling the rubber in the seal a bit.
If the rear main is leaking because the crankshaft journal has a groove worn into it then the product may not help or will help very little.
There’s no way of course of knowing what the situation is with the seal unless disassembled.

If the PCV is good then I would say give the product a try and hope for the best. Hope that helps.

I say live with the leak and drive on (assuming it’s not a PCV issue).
If it’s dripping on your driveway put something to catch the drip.
Check the oil level on a regular basis (at least every 1000 miles).

On an engine that age I’d definitely try it, or a product like it.

I have to agree with circuitsmith, live with it. You say its a small leak so that means that you will never recover the cost of the in the savings on oil, in other words, the oil is cheaper than the repair. Instead of this product, which may or may not work, you could use one of the high mileage oils on your next oil change, they promise to do the same thing.

I think there is a good chance that it is not the rear main seal that is leaking anyway. It may only be the pan gasket, where the leak can be slowed down by tightening the bolts, carefully, they only get about 10 ft pounds of torque. More likely, its the front seal though.

If you get a second opinion and find its the front seal, then, unless it gets really bad, just have a new front seal put in at the next timing belt change. A front seal can leak oil at a rate of one quart every 500 miles for many years and over 100k miles, but when it lets go completely, it will empty the engine of all its oil in about two minutes.

Just switch over to a high mileage oil such as Valvoline Max-Life. These oils have an additive that causes the oil seals to swell slightly thereby stopping oil leaks.

Tester