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Old 05-05-2010, 06:23 PM   #1
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Valve Cover Breather ... how much airflow?

How much air are you guys seeing comming out of the valve cover breather at idle? It it a very noticeable flow of air? I place my hand in front of the breather and I can feel a decent amount of air moving out at idle. Just wondering if this is normal?



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Old 05-05-2010, 07:16 PM   #2
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I'd imagine its alright. The valve cover breather is just that, lets it breath. Shouldn't be too much though. Did you notice some sort of problem or just curious?
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Old 05-05-2010, 08:23 PM   #3
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Just doing the normal things I do before heading to the track. Checked tire pressure, changed the oil, cleaned the air filter and other things like that.

When I was running the motor after adding oil I saw oil slightly leaking out of the Billet oil cap. When it was running I tried tightening the cap but no go.. the o-ring had fallen off. When I pulled the cap off with it running I felt a DECENT amount of air blowing out of the BIG filler hole. Just seems odd, I dont remember my 01zx3zetec having that much flow out of the valve cover... i may never have checked? it was years ago i had my other focus.

My custom JRSC BBK is still putting out 13psi at 8krpm and is running great, idling good and a/f's cruising are great along w mileage. Im at 60k right now (motor has seen two different turbo setups, procharger, vortec and now the JRSC). Never seen more than 350whp though with great tunes.

I just wanted to see if you guys have a NOTICEABLE amount of air moving out of your valve cover breather/oil filler cap with it running
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Old 05-05-2010, 08:43 PM   #4
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I can't imagine there should be that much air coming out of it... my guess is the valve seals would be going bad if there was.
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:11 PM   #5
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Well this was bothering me so much I went outside and warmed the motor up. Pulled all plugs and did a compression test-

Results-

90-87-91-90

I really hope its just the gauge (i also remembered once i came inside i had the throttle closed durring test). It was handed down to me from my pops and im sure has been around for quite some time.The car runs GREAT and has plenty of power (pulls HARD on my buddies no-IC vortec zx3) I remember it reading low a couple years ago when testing my yamaha r1 before I bought it (it ran GREAT though) I was just concerned about consistency across the cylinders since it was rebuild a couple months prior.
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:19 PM   #6
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Those numbers should be in the 120 region but at least they're consistent. I'd blame the tester, too... the one I borrowed from VatoZone couldn't get a solid seal for its life.
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaysE View Post
Those numbers should be in the 120 region but at least they're consistent. I'd blame the tester, too... the one I borrowed from VatoZone couldn't get a solid seal for its life.
Thats what im hoping, i guess ill find out 2maro. Im gonne pull my buddies zx3 valve breather tomaro and see how much air flow is comming out of his. Im sure it should be close to mine.

ALSO... does it make much of a difference doing the compression check without the throttle plate open?
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Old 05-07-2010, 06:08 PM   #8
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It can make a big diff without the throttle open. I always block it pretty wide so there is no restriction. Just remember to take the stop off before starting it! (BTDT)

The engine will feel like a TON of air is coming from the breather if you hold your hand in front. But, it really isn't pushing that much out. What happens is the crankcase volume changes radically with the pistons movement and you feel the pulsing that way. Perfectly normal. If you close the hole with your hand, the PCV should be able to put a vacuum that you can feel if it is not blocked and working properly.
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Old 05-07-2010, 11:46 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RecoilRob View Post
It can make a big diff without the throttle open. I always block it pretty wide so there is no restriction. Just remember to take the stop off before starting it! (BTDT)

The engine will feel like a TON of air is coming from the breather if you hold your hand in front. But, it really isn't pushing that much out. What happens is the crankcase volume changes radically with the pistons movement and you feel the pulsing that way. Perfectly normal. If you close the hole with your hand, the PCV should be able to put a vacuum that you can feel if it is not blocked and working properly.





The area's between the yellow lines, marked with yellow and between the orange and blue is where the PCV system comes into play. That is a high or low pressure area. The displacement of air by the pistons is not linear. It varies by crank angle. The piston moves fast up to ~74*ATDC and starts slowing after that point, leaving 180*-74* of slow time, 106*. The same happens on the upstroke, 74* fast and 106* slowing. Notice the 74's overlap and 106's overlap for the opposing cylinders. That means you always have an imbalance in the bottom end because of irregularities in piston speeds. That is where the pulsing of the PCV comes from.

Should actually be a way to calculate that volume too, something involving inverse sine angles or something I'd bet.
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Old 05-15-2010, 07:56 AM   #10
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I can't imagine there should be that much air coming out of it... my guess is the valve seals would be going bad if there was.
Bad piston rings will also cause excessive 'leakage'...
Combustion pressure leaking past the rings into the crankcase...crankcase oil drain passages from the head will cause this pressure to leak out the valve cover breather.
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