How Much Does Oil Leak Repair Cost?

Written by: Staff

An oil leak is one of the most common problems a car owner can encounter.  If you start to see a puddle, stain or splotch underneath your car, then it’s time to head to your local mechanic to get the problem resolved as soon as possible.  If the fluid is confirmed as engine oil, this could be an extreme situation since engine oil is what lubricates the pistons in your engine, making sure they glide smoothly within the housing.

The cost of an oil leak repair can depend on the complexity of the problem, the size of the leak, your geographical location, the mechanic performing the job and the make and model of the vehicle.

oil leakage on I-90 by Sarah German, on Flickr
oil leakage on I-90” (CC BY 2.0) by Sarah German

How much does an engine oil leak repair cost?

An oil leak diagnosis, to see what is causing the oil to leak, can cost $65 to $115.  This won’t include any repairs, just a diagnosis; however, if you were to use mechanic or dealer for the repair, the diagnosis fee will be applied to the final invoice.  The repairs to fix an oil leak will all depend on the type of repair that needs to be performed.  Refer to our table below to see what it may cost at a local mechanic.

According to a member on, they were quoted $1,000 to fix the main seal on their car which was causing the oil leak.

Someone on Car Talk asked if $560 was a fair price to pay to replace an oil pan gasket.  Even though the oil pan gasket retailed for $30, the labor would be close to $560 since it would be difficult to get to.

Type of Oil Leak RepairCost
Corroded oil cooler line$90 to $400
Damaged gasket$75 to $200
Damaged hose$90 to $400+
Damaged oil pan$100 to $400
Damaged piston$600+
Improperly installed oil filter$20 to $60
Missing gasket$50 to $100
New oil drain plug gasket$30

Oil leak repair overview

There are many reasons oil can leak from a car’s engine.  This can include an oil drain plug that’s not sealing; a damaged, hose, gasket, piston or ring; damaged oil pan; corroded oil cooler line; improperly installed oil filter; and/or a missing gasket.  It can be as simple as a tightening a bolt in the oil pan to replacing a part.  Oil leaking after an oil change, for example, could mean the oil filter wasn’t put on right.

What are the extra costs?

After the oil leak has been fixed, oil will need to be added, and most mechanics will recommend a full oil change is done.  Some will include this in their initial invoice, while others may charge extra.  The average oil change can cost $20 to $50, depending on the oil being used.

Tips to know:

Don’t confuse your engine oil with another fluid.  Engine oil, for example, will always be brown or black, but it can be an amber-like color if it’s newer oil.  Power steering fluid, on the other hand, can commonly be red, green or clear, while automatic transmission fluid will be red.  Another common fluid that leaks — engine coolant — can be green, orange, clear or red.

To check for an oil leak, keep a close eye on your oil dipstick.  If the level drops over time, it’s a sure sign you’re losing oil.  Also, when driving, pay close attention to the tailpipe to see if any blue smoke is coming out.  Blue smoke often is a sign of oil leaking into the engine.  Lastly, according to, smell for oil after you turned off your car.

How can I save money?

Never ignore an oil leak, even if you don’t think it’s oil.  Failing to take it to a mechanic can often lead to more troubles, costing much more than what you would have spent in the first place.

The vast majority of oil leaks on the market will often come from a degraded engine gasket, an oil pan leak or a bad connection.  If you’re familiar with cars, crawl underneath the car and closely examine the oil pan seals to make sure they are intact.  Also, while underneath, also take a look at the timing cover seals and the valve cover gasket to make sure all are sealed as well.

While it shouldn’t be considered a permanent solution, there are oil leak products that may be able to help.  The products simply mix with the oil and can stop minor leaks.

Advertising Disclosure: This content may include referral links. Please read our disclosure policy for more info.


Average Reported Cost: $1950

100 %
0 %
Less Expensive $1 $1.5K $3K $5K $6.5K More Expensive $8k

How much did you spend?

Was it worth it?  

  1. Stacy (Wichita,  Kansas) paid $3000 and said:

    $3000 to fix my car.

    Was it worth it? Yes

  2. Lee (Ann arbor,  Michigan) paid $900 and said:

    Tune up included

    Was it worth it? Yes

About Us | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Amazon Affiliate Disclosure
Copyright © 2022 | Proudly affiliated with the T2 Web Network, LLC
The information contained on this website is intended as an educational aid only and is not intended as medical and/or legal advice.