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      12-05-2012, 04:47 PM   #1
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Drives: 2006 BMW 325i
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Cincinnati

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Gasket Replacing to fix oil leak (image gallery attached)

So... somewhere, there is a tiny little oil leak and it's DRIVING ME CRAZY. I noticed it when I was replacing my water pump and thermostat last weekend. I tried cleaning things up as best as I could (it's a damn tight fit in there) and I'm going to re-inspect this weekend to see if I can located it.

Anyways, my question is 2 parts:

PART 1: What, in your experience, is the best way to locate an oil leak that you have had? Any tricks of the trade? I'm just a weekend DIY'er and not a mechanic, so keep that in mind.

PART 2: I know of the oil filter housing gasket, the valve cover screws and the oil pan gasket. Any other obvious places to look?

Again, I'm NO mechanic, by any stretch of the imagination. Keep that in mind.

I'm about 75% sure it's the oil filter housing gasket since I see oil up that far. Common sense tells me (well, my form of common sense) that just trace the oil as far UP as you can go, and then that's probably the leak.

Check out the link for some images, sorry they are huge and didn't want to upload them to the forums. It's a folder with about 6 images in it.

IMAGE 1: Front view, underneath the oil filter area.
IMAGE 2: Underneath oil filter area right above the belts
IMAGE 3 & 4: Down on the right side of the engine. I assume this is the head gasket? (Again, no mechanic here). It definitely looks like more wet oil... you can really see it at the top of those pictures.
IMAGE 5: Back behind the oil filter

My issue is I don't know if it's coming from the oil filter housing gasket and leaking down onto what image 3 & 4 show... or coming from where image 3 & 4 show... hell, my luck, probably both.