Oil below the headgasket line is it imminent head gasket failure?
I looked in my engine compartment and I can see some oils deposits below the head gasket at the rear of the engine. Is the head gasket going to fail soon? I have no oil in the water or water in the oil and the compression is perfect. Replacing the head gasket on a 20NE engine will require head skimming? Which parts other then the head gasket will be good to change while I am replacing the head gasket. I am definetely tempting to fit a 20SEH Cam while I am at it.
it could have simply leaked from higher up like the join between the head and cam housing, or the cam cover gasket, or the distributor oil seal, or camshaft oil seal............
Head gasket dont tend to "let go" externally at all, usually between two cylinders or between the oil and water cutouts. Generally speaking though most 4 pot GM head gaskets start to leak on the bottom right hand corner of the gasket, that ledge where the engine number is.
I thought about a possible leak from the head to the cam housing but really it looks oil free between the CAM housing and the engine block. Only the engine block at the rear below the cylinder head looks unusually a bit oily. Also the inlet manifold in the way so I can't see very well to be sure of whats going on.
God yeah, I habe to wipe the poxy engine number ledge about once a month! Still, it's been weeping for about 3 years and doesn't need topping up between 6k mile oil changes so I suggest, like me, don't worry too much. Just keep an eye on the things you know to watch and all should be fine. For ages I bet.