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Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 10 Jun 2012, 12:06 pm
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Location: miami, florida, USA.
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Default Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

2001 PT Cruiser, 92,900 miles. Had a spark plug well oil leak.
Well just finished replacing the Valve Cover gaskets. About 3 hrs.(my first time doing this) which includes about 20-30 minutes cleaning surfaces and cover gasket channels.
"Felt-Pro" gasket (5) pieces #V55051BR $37.79 from Advance Auto Parts, a beautiful product, though expensive.

Had to remove:
Upper intake manifold (To start this see the spark plug installation instructions in the Tech Section of this Forum)
In addition to above and in order to remove the entire Upper Intake Manifold and have full access to the Valve Cover:
-Disconnected throttle support (2 nuts), disconnect throttle cables,
-Disconnected four (4) electrical connectors and four (4) hose connections.
-Removed Ignition Coil Pack four(4) bolts attached to top of valve cover
-Disconnected Spark Plug wires from Spark Plugs
-Disconnected Steering Fluid reservoir two (2) bolts and tied it to the side and out of the way.
-Removed nine (9) valve cover bolts and they stay in cover if yo don't pull them out
-Very carefully cleaned the flat, top surfaced with a one edged blade and a small chisel trying not to scratch the metal but remove the build up of oil residue.
-Meticulously cleaned the valve cover's outer perimeter and spark plug well channels of almost all the oil and crud I found there. This with a clean rag and small screw driver covered by the rag, folded 2 to 3 times.
-Cleaned all the threads of the cover bolts.
-RTV gasket sealer at the specified corners in the Service Manual.
-Replaced valve cover, torqued bolts to 105 in. lbs in three steps and in the correct sequence: 40 in.lbs, 80 in. lbs and 105 in.lbs.

I used a Chilton PT Cruiser Service manual 2001-2003 and this forum's Tech guide for Spark Plug replacement (which gets you started with the Intake manifold removal):
http://www.hugginsnet.com/ptcruiser/...park_Plugs.pdf
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Old 10 Jun 2012, 12:25 pm
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 166
Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

I just replaced mine valve cover gasket and the spark plug well gaskets today also. You're right about the Fel-Pro gasket set...really good quality, but a bit pricey. I just changed plugs and wires the other day, and my #3 plug threads were completely coated in oil when I pulled it out. It helped to pull the coil pack off of the valve cover to give me some extra room to maneuver it around in order to pull it off.

I saw some old RTV in the corners of the right hand side of the cover, but I don't have a shop manual and didn't have any way of getting out to the parts place to buy some once I had everything torn apart. I'll have to keep an eye on it to see if it develops a leak in the right side corners. This wasn't a horrible job, but just a pain with all of the stuff that you have to remove/disconnect to get at the valve cover. Anyway, this is the first one I've ever done on a PT, and it took me almost 2-3/4 hrs. It took a bit of time to get all of the crud cleaned off of the cover(most of the dirt was outside and kind of baked on). The inside of the cover was pretty darn clean for 141,000 miles.
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Old 10 Jun 2012, 01:11 pm
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Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

sscanlan:
The corners that require RTV:
If you put your index finger on the flat, mating surface of the engine block and run it until you come to a vertical corner, this is the spot. This happens two (2) times in each on the right and left sides of the engine ( as you stand in front of the engine). This happens four (4) times in total.
The amount of RTV is about the size of Chick Pea or slightly larger.

When you take the valve cover off this gasket material will either be stuck to the engine on stuck to the cover.
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Old 10 Jun 2012, 02:14 pm
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Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by sscanlan View Post
The inside of the cover was pretty darn clean for 141,000 miles.
These are really clean running engines; always impressed when i take some old piece of junk apart and see everything inside so shiny!

I don't use RTV anymore, don't have leaks. But don't be like me- I'm so lazy I don't tuck in my shirt- That way I don't have to 'zip-up' either
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Old 10 Jun 2012, 02:22 pm
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Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

Well, I'm going copy you on the shirt idea!
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Old 29 May 2013, 02:05 am
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Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Carrollton, GA
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Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

I had an oil leak around the first spark plug and so I replaced the gasket and spark plug seals. I used the factory manual which has this warning:

CAUTION: When removing cylinder head cover
bolts, be careful not to interchange the two (2)
center bolts with the seven (7) perimeter bolts.
The two (2) center bolts contain an aluminum
washer between the bolt head and torque limiter
for sealing purposes.

I took this seriously, however, when I went to re-install the bolts it completely slipped my mind. I examined the bolts to see if there were any differences but they all looked identical. What should I do?
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Old 29 May 2013, 07:45 am
reevescajr's Avatar
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 56
Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

There are threads about oil in the plug ports on this forum, one recently that I posted about finding oil in the #1 plug port again. I continue to be skeptical that this is seal leakage, since I've never seen oil in any of the other ports. It could easily be spillage from oil changes. I do plan to check after I get mine changed next time.

BTW, I call it a "valve cover" too, but technically it is not, since the valves aren't under it like they are on the engines many of us have worked on. I think Chrysler calls it a "head cover." It took me awhile to find it in the service manual.
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Old 29 May 2013, 04:46 pm
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Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

Never been able to see a difference in the bolts, either- They list a different PN for them ...
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Old 30 May 2013, 12:20 pm
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Location: Lewisville, Texas
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Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

Just had a quote from my local dealer on replacing the cover and seals, apparently it all comes as a kit, anyways .. They came back with $449 and change.

And that doesn't include the plugs.
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Old 30 May 2013, 02:51 pm
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Default Re: Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

well then its DIY time
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