Volkswagen Oil Leak

How to Know It’s Time to Replace a Volkswagen’s Camshaft Seal

The camshaft seal is a small but critical part of the engine that is made of rubber, and it is essential to a Volkswagen engine’s camshaft assembly. It is responsible for sealing the camshaft to prevent engine oil from leaking. Without a functioning camshaft seal, the engine oil can leak out and cause a host of problems, including engine damage and decreased performance.

Over time, the seal can deteriorate, become brittle, and crack, leading to oil leaks. Several factors can cause camshaft seal failure, including age and wear, high mileage, contaminants in the engine oil, improper installation, improper lubrication, and overheating.

Age and Wear

As mentioned, the camshaft seal is made of rubber, which can deteriorate over time. The age of the seal can cause it to lose its elasticity, leading to oil leaks. Over time, the seal can become brittle and crack, leading to leaks. This can happen even if the vehicle is not frequently driven or subjected to harsh conditions. The lifespan of the seal can vary depending on several factors, including the type of rubber used, the quality of the seal, and the operating conditions of the engine.

High Mileage

High mileage can also be a cause of camshaft seal failure. The constant movement of the camshaft can cause wear and tear on the seal, leading to leaks. This can be exacerbated if the vehicle is frequently driven in stop-and-go traffic or on rough roads, which can cause more stress on the engine components. Additionally, the camshaft seal may fail prematurely if the engine has been poorly maintained or subjected to extreme operating conditions.


Contaminants in the engine oil can cause the camshaft seal to fail. Dirt, debris, and other particles can cause damage to the seal, leading to leaks. This can be prevented by using high-quality engine oil and changing the oil and oil filter at the recommended intervals. If the engine has not been maintained properly, contaminants may build up in the oil, increasing the risk of seal failure.

Incorrect Installation

Improper installation of the camshaft seal can cause it to fail prematurely. If the seal is not aligned correctly or fitted snugly to the camshaft, it can cause oil leaks, engine damage, and even engine failure. Additionally, if the seal is damaged during installation or the wrong type of seal is used, it can cause problems.

Following the manufacturer’s recommended installation procedures or having a professional mechanic install the seal is important. A mechanic will have the expertise and knowledge to properly install the camshaft seal and ensure that it is fitted correctly to prevent oil leaks.

Improper Lubrication

Improper lubrication can also cause the camshaft seal to fail. If the engine oil is too thick or too thin, it can cause the seal to wear down more quickly. Additionally, if the engine oil level is too low or too high, it can cause oil leaks and seal failure. Use the recommended type of engine oil for your Volkswagen and ensure that the oil level is within the recommended range. If the oil is not changed regularly, it can become contaminated with dirt and debris, leading to seal failure.


If the engine overheats, it can cause the camshaft seal to fail. Overheating can cause the seal to become brittle and crack. Overheating can be caused by several factors, like low coolant levels, malfunctioning cooling systems, a defective thermostat, or a faulty water pump. If the engine overheats, address the issue immediately to prevent further damage to the engine and the camshaft seal. Regular maintenance, including checking the coolant level and ensuring the cooling system is properly functioning, can help prevent overheating and camshaft seal failure.

Volkswagen Camshaft Seal

Get Help from Our Experts at Kruse Lucas Imports

If you notice oil leaks or other signs in your VW, you should allow a professional mechanic to identify the cause of the problem and ensure that it is repaired correctly. At Kruse Lucas Imports, we have highly qualified mechanics that can fix your Volkswagen’s Camshaft Seal failure. Our mechanics will ensure that an original part is used to replace and repair your car issues.

We are known for our excellent service for drivers in cities like Manteca, Oakdale, Ripon, Turlock, and Modesto, CA. If you need any help with your VW, feel free to reach out to us. You can call us or stop by to speak with our friendly staff.

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