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I have an 02 dakota that over time has been gradually losing oil, and just recently it's been smelling like burning oil bad at the exhaust manifold. My valve cover gasket does look like its leaking a bit. But my dad is a mechanic and said its leaking way more than it should just from the gasket. It's also leaking to what seems like from my oil filter. I'm not sure exactly where but my filter gets covered in oil on the outside and it drips from the bottom of it. Truck doesn't seem to smoke at all when it starts, no knocking, runs really good actually. Any help would be appreciated
 

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2003 Dakota Sport, club cab, 3.9L V6, 5 speed manual
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I suspect if you trace the oil upward from the oil filter, you'll find it's coming from the valve cover gaskets also. A quart a week is a lot, depending on how much you drive it. Valve cover gaskets don't cost too much, and you haven't wasted the money if the problem persists, but I'm guessing they should resolve your leak issue and most of the oil consumption issue.
 
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