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Hi,
I have a 1997 Range Rover hse (p38). It has a slow transmission fluid leak. My dad took it to a repair shop and they told him it would cost 4000 dollars to fix it because the Range Rover you need a special tool to get to the transmission or you have to take another engine part out just to get to the transmission . Is this true ? Is there anyways around this? I need cheaper options . My cars value is only 2500 if I go by Kelly blue book so not really worn it for me . I do love the Rover and want to get it fixed but I cannot see myself paying that much for it . Any advise on this ? Thank you .
 

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Where is the leak coming from? Front, back, transmission cooler pipes? Not sure what special tool they are talking about as there's no special tools needed. Getting to the transmission is easy and pretty obvious, it's about 4 feet long and lives under the middle of the car.
 

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It seems to be coming from the froNt end of the car underneath between the tires. I am not an expert and have not changed any complex parts .
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Exactly as Richard said. Where is the leak?

As for "special tools," it is a matter of perspective. Even a jack stand can be considered as a special tool.
 

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I just know it's under the car and that's its dripping from grey metallic thing . I'm going to ask my dad this saturday but going to go to another place to have it better diagnosed because my dad doesnt even really remember when I ask him .
 

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Just saw your pictures. Are you sure it's even transmission oil that's leaking? FYI, your car is leaking much less fluids than my P38. I would consider your P38 almost leak free.

Wipe that fluid you see on to a paper towel. What color is it? Is it dark brown or bright red? If dark brown or even light brown, it's engine oil.
 

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Just saw your pictures. Are you sure it's even transmission oil that's leaking? FYI, your car is leaking much less fluids than my P38. I would consider your P38 almost leak free.

Wipe that fluid you see on to a paper towel. What color is it? Is it dark brown or bright red? If dark brown or even light brown, it's engine oil.
Yeah so I don’t even think it’s transmission fluid because of he color. Yeah my dad was probably confused and what they were talking about was probably the oil being hard to get to and costing 4000 dollars to fix . Here is a photo of the color of the oil
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Yes it’s not a heavy leak it’s a slow leak nut over time it starts to make the driveway and street look ugly . I have a mat underneath it now .
 

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Agreed, that looks pretty clean to me, much cleaner than most. That's engine oil and the most likely leak is from one of the rocker cover gaskets that is dribbling down the back of the engine and dropping off the lowest point. It could be the rear main oil seal but there would usually be far more than you have there. Mine is much worse than that and I know it's from the rocker cover gaskets but I haven't got round to doing anything about it yet. Look up the sides of the engine and you'll probably see damp from where it is running down.
 

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Yeah, looks like engine oil to me. Usually, rocker panel gaskets leak and end up where you see the oil on your vehicle.

Rocker panel gaskets cost about $15 bucks each, and is extremely easy to get to.

The leak is pretty minimal as far as I'm concerned. Try to do the repair yourself. I would run as fast as possible from a shop that quoted $4k to fix that.
 

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Agreed, that looks pretty clean to me, much cleaner than most. That's engine oil and the most likely leak is from one of the rocker cover gaskets that is dribbling down the back of the engine and dropping off the lowest point. It could be the rear main oil seal but there would usually be far more than you have there. Mine is much worse than that and I know it's from the rocker cover gaskets but I haven't got round to doing anything about it yet. Look up the sides of the engine and you'll probably see damp from where it is running down.
Yes after a while maybe a couple days as you can see in this photo drops come out . This was a long time ago when I first got it .
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That’s what I figured . That is probably what I am going to do . To try and resolve these problems on my own or hireing someone independent or an affordable shop who can do this but if it cost too much I’m going to try to avoid it and just ride it out till it dies I am working part time and going to school at the moment I don’t have enough to just throw money at it Like some people with rovers do.Thank you for the free advise it was helpful . I guess I came to the conclusion that there is no 4000 dollar Repair for oil leak or transmission as far as we know? To get to the transmission or oil ? Thanks for the advise .
 

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When you are using a litre of oil every 500 miles, then is the time to start thinking about doing something about it, That is pretty normal for an engine that was designed in the 1960s and built 20+ years ago.
 

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Ok that was my plan to just leave it alone but when I get a little extra money I try to see if I can put any into it to fix what I can . Thank you for your advise it helped me understand this a lot better .
 

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It's a lot of fun and is a good learning experience when you work on cars like a P38 yourself. If you've never worked on cars before, it will be intimidating at first. However, if you keep at it you will be mechanically competent in no time. If you haven't already, get a copy of RAVE which is the factory issued workshop manual for P38s.

Shops can quote whatever they want. $4k quote is, as such, possible. However, for that kind of money, you really should be getting either the engine or the transmission replaced completely. Otherwise, most likely, you're getting screwed. Back in the day, I was not mechanically inclined and was pretty lazy so have spent thousands of dollars on P38 repairs. One repair bill came to about $5k. In retrospect, I was a really good customer to the shop that I used to take my P38 for service. FYI, that $5k service was for a transmission service. Recently, I've done a similar transmission service myself for about $300 in parts.
 

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Hi,
I have a 1997 Range Rover hse (p38). It has a slow transmission fluid leak. My dad took it to a repair shop and they told him it would cost 4000 dollars to fix it because the Range Rover you need a special tool to get to the transmission or you have to take another engine part out just to get to the transmission . Is this true ? Is there anyways around this? I need cheaper options . My cars value is only 2500 if I go by Kelly blue book so not really worn it for me . I do love the Rover and want to get it fixed but I cannot see myself paying that much for it . Any advise on this ? Thank you .
That is definitely looks like engine oil and as others have said, it isn't that bad for any English car. Check trans fluid level just to be sure. If somehow you can clean the area above where you see the leak, you may discover it is the valve cover(s), an oil cooler line or an oil pressure relief valve O-ring.
 

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Just reading your post. I know it doesn't suit the purists, but you can buy a lot of oil for $4k, and it doesn't look like much of a drip.
 

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PS If you want to find out where its coming from, clean up all the area including the engine block and rocker cover area using degreaser, and then let it run for a bit with a brick on the accelerator (say 3,000 rpm) then get under it and try to trace the leak. Well that is what I would do, but I am a bit of a bushie as they say in Australia.
 
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