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kevin37 10-05-2012 06:54 AM

Valve cover gasket
I have a small oil leak coming from under the valve cover next to the timing belt. I plan on replacing the gasket and just want to see if anyone else has had this problem and make sure that it is just the gasket. Any info is greatly appreciated. Oh and it's a zetec

macdiesel 10-05-2012 06:22 PM

You brakeklean the leak and see we're its coming from.

amc49 10-05-2012 11:52 PM

Yep, could be a cam seal too.

oshoguno 10-09-2012 03:52 PM

The valve cover gasket leaks quite often, mostly near the front of the engine. It is pretty straight forward to replace, just make sure to clean the engine first so that no gunk from around the cover can fall into the head when you pull the cover off. There are threads about it, just do a search and you will find them.

amc49 10-09-2012 06:52 PM

The bolts are shouldered, meaning they hit solid at the last. If it leaks then you get to do it all over, you absolutely cannot over tighten bolt to stop leak since the gasket can get no tighter once you have bottomed the bolt. The bolts are not really hardened, you will break them like so many others here do then fun city. Simple job turns into nightmare...........

Clean and dry and it'll work flawlessly, get sloppy and leave some crap in cover groove and you probably get to do it over. No need for any sealant except maybe a small dab right in the corners of cam caps. Tighten all bolts evenly, the gasket is thick and can roll the sealing edge over to not seal if you tighten a whole bunch in one spot without rest of the cover coming down with that spot evenly. Look at gasket close too, I've seen pieces of mold flashing that could interfere with sealing. I peel them off.

logsdon 03-22-2013 09:57 PM

Check engine light comes on, engine runs rough
I unhooked the breather tube from the valve cover, unhooked spark plugs covers, took out valve cover bolts, but had an issue with one at the bottom middle above the heat shield... there is a part of the shield that is on top of that bolt (like an upside down 10mm bolt attached to the valve cover bolt below it) and I couldn't get it off.

I'm a novice, chickened out, put the bolts back on, spark plug covers back on, breather tube back on... the car runs/idles awful and the check engine light came on.

Any thoughts? Bolts are on gently, maybe not enough torque (no torque wrench). Maybe I don't have a spark plug cover on completely?

don627 03-22-2013 11:31 PM

x2 on the cam seals, that happened to me.

logsdon 03-22-2013 11:46 PM

Thank you. If I'm understanding correctly I need to make sure the valve cover bolts are on snug (not too tight as I've seen described in other forum posts) to ensure the seal and will give that a shot. If that doesn't do it I'll have it towed to a shop vs. driving it there to complete the job.

sailor 03-24-2013 02:39 PM

Plug connections in the wrong order or loose, that's all that's likely from what you did. Re-check it & you should be OK. Chk. engine light would come on from the misfire, no worries there once corrected.


logsdon 03-24-2013 03:25 PM

Thank you. I think you are right about having been loose. I ended up having it towed just so I didn't make anything worse in driving it there since I couldn't finish the job myself anyway. Besides the gasket, they checked spark plugs (they must have caught the misfire in the check engine light) and found a large gap on one that may have contributed to misfiring so I'll look at it as a blessing in disguise that it got discovered in addition.

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