What is this part?


1997 Buick Skylark V6 3.1ltr

Right in front of the transmission pan there is a plate. Maybe 5" long and ‘L’ shaped i.e. it is parallel to the ground and then goes vertical. It has 3(4?) 10mm bolts.

The problem is after I replaced the radiator and did a transmission flush I was getting a small drip and it is coming from around the bolt(s). I never touched them. When I tightened them they seemed a little loose(maybe they were at max 90in-lbs). But one of them may be stripped.

If so is the bolt that goes bad or the female threads? What I am going to do is get three bolts and see if they will tighten.


Eh? Easy enough to tell which is stripped. Look at the bolt threads, if they aren’t stripped, the threaded hole is.

The fluid drip is likely from above the protective plate you speak of.


if the threaded hole is a shop can take care of it yes?

if the leak is above, what are the possibilities?
though everything looks dry except on that plate.


that plate is usually an inspection plate to check the torque of the flywheel bolts. i believe if this is leaking, you should look in front of it for a radiator leak, or a valve cover leak. they usually blow back, and drip around these housings, making it look like you have a transmission leak, when in fact you have a valve cover or waterpump leak.


Cappy makes a good point. I’d be inclined to remove the plate and (using a flashlight or trouble light) attempt to locate the leak.
Position yourself to the side when removing the plate so you don’t wear the fluid.

Can you tell us what color the fluid is?

Yes, (if stripped) the hole can be re-tapped.

The bolts can be tightened, but try to find the torque value for those bolts so they don’t get stripped again. Ensure they are not cross-threaded. (Always start bolts AND spark plugs by hand to avoid this)

If a shop tech will be doing this you won’t (shouldn’t) have a problem.


i meant a waterpump leak


the leaking fluid is the color of the transmission fluid.
radiator is not leaking. in fact i just replaced it because i was getting
coolant into the transmission fluid.
and i flushed the transmission by attaching clear hose to the return line,
starting engine and pouring in new fluid as the old emptied.

this leak started a day afterwards.

also it does not leak when car is running.
when i get home i left the car running and for about 30 min. and no leak.
also there is no leak immediately after the car stops.
it seems it starts when the car cools down.
it is only a couple drops.

it may be coming from above. i got unde rtheir last night with a flashlight. actually better to see at night with a flashlight. but the engine is so packed hard to tell.

anyways i am thinking since th leak is so small i would try some transmission sealant product. Bar’s, Eagle, Lucas?

thanks for the input.