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My 2007 Tacoma has a lot of engine/oil black gunk around the bottom of the engine bay (below the battery and that area). I'm talking about solid black. Could that be caused by a leaky oil pan gasket? What else possibly could be the reason?

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It very well could be the oil pan gasket, but this could be caused from a leaky anything on the engine. Look for where the highest point of where you see the gunk and start looking from that level. You should also be seeing some amount of gunk on the engine as well. If you really want to find it, do a thorough cleaning of the entire engine bay, then start looking for where the leak originates from.

  • but if it is spraying, the relative position is really not that indicative, no ? – amphibient May 18 '15 at 18:17
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    If the oil was spraying, you would be losing a lot more oil. It would be all over the place, to include your exhaust manifolds ... which would mean a lot of smoke as well. Leaking oil just dribbles down. It won't go up very far at all. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 May 18 '15 at 18:21
  • but if the oil leak just goes down, it couldn't possibly be the oil pan gasket because it is in the very bottom of the engine block, below the affected areas – amphibient May 18 '15 at 19:06

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