The car has 132k miles. How do they know its leaking from the valve covers and should I get the engine steamed cleaned and check for a leak after a week or so?
Valve cover gasket leaks are located by visual inspection and are usually one of the easier leaks to confirm the source of, since they are high up on the engine. It would’t hurt to wash it off, especially if it’s very oily and grungy. It’s definitely nicer to work on a clean engine too, but it’s usually not necessary in order to perform the job.
While maintenance is being performed on vehicles, competent, experienced mechanics are always inspecting and noticing evidence of failures, areas needing attention, or just general condition of vehicles. If you feel like you need help with this, feel free to contact a certified mechanic who can pinpoint the source of the leak and make any repairs that are necessary.
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