At my 90000 mile complete service I was told that there is a small leak at the rear valve cover. No evidence of this on garage floor. To replace gasket and tune valves price quoted was over $600 from dealer. How serious is a small leak? What is the minimum fix and how much should that cost?
the minimum fix is to do nothing until later, or never. Now, if you are getting a valve adjustment anyway, then the valve cover gasket will be replaced anyway. So, two questions for you:
- Do you need the valve adjustment? what does the owner’s manual say?
- How much oil is used between oil changes?
That will tell you whether the oil leak may be significant, and you can make an informed decision on whether you should do anything about it.
layhawkroy is right about it all - so the only Q is whether you need a valve adjustment.
I’d lay money on over 50% of autos running around with “small leaks” in their valve covers. If it isn’t make a mess on the ground, dripping on something really hot (like an exhaust manifold), or having you adding oil between changes then IMHO it is not worth the time or money.
If you want a quick shot at slowing or stopping the leak, spend 10 minutes snugging down the valve cover bolts - not hard. These don’t want or need a lot of torque - just a firm snug.