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1987 - 1996 F150 & Larger F-Series Trucks 1987 - 1996 Ford F-150, F-250, F-350 and larger pickups - including the 1997 heavy-duty F250/F350+ trucks

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Old 01-26-2012, 05:26 PM
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How to replace valve cover gasket?

My truck leaks a large volume of oil, and it's gotten worse. It's to the point that I can't keep up with adding oil to it now. I've replaced the rear main seal on the engine/transmission and this did not fix the problem. I originally thought this was where the leak was because the oil drips from the rear of the engine where it mounts to the transmission.

A lot of folks have theorized its the valve cover gasket. This makes sense as the engine is covered in oil from the valve cover gasket down.

But- the valve cover gasket is inaccessible with EFI on top of it. I've never attempted a repair like this myself, and I'm a little worried about removing the EFI. Anything I need to know? If I accomplish removing the EFI and Valve Cover, anything extra I need to do prevent this leak from coming back? I've heard there's oil ports on either side of the valves that may need to be cleaned.

Thanks guys
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Old 01-26-2012, 05:41 PM
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What's your truck? Motor ?
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:02 PM
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Yeah it would help to know what motor you're talking about.

Valve cover gasket replacement is not hard at all. You'll have to remove the throttle body, upper intake manifold, and if it's a V8, the EGR solenoids from the driver's side valve cover.

However, valve cover gaskets are not the only place oil will leak from. It's very common for these trucks to leak from between the lower intake manifold and the block. It's not terribly hard to fix either. You just need to remove a few more parts like the fuel rail and a couple sensors.

While you have all that off, it's a good time to have your injectors sonically cleaned. It will improve idle and fuel efficiency.
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:48 PM
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i will assume the 5.0.....you will need to disconnect the vacuum lines and egr hose attached to the upper intake, disconnect the egr on the passenger side, remove the 6 screws for the upper intake and then you can access both valve covers. 4 bolts hold on each cover. Just don't overtighten covers ...and then you reinstall in reverse order.
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:51 PM
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I'm sorry guys, for some reason I thought the engine was listed in my profile.

It's the 4.9L straight six, auto trans
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Old 01-27-2012, 06:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andym View Post
Yeah it would help to know what motor you're talking about.

Valve cover gasket replacement is not hard at all. You'll have to remove the throttle body, upper intake manifold, and if it's a V8, the EGR solenoids from the driver's side valve cover.

However, valve cover gaskets are not the only place oil will leak from. It's very common for these trucks to leak from between the lower intake manifold and the block. It's not terribly hard to fix either. You just need to remove a few more parts like the fuel rail and a couple sensors.
Ok, its a 4.9L 300 six. Is the procedure different for this engine vs the V8, as far as removing the EFI?

If the leak is coming from the lower intake manifold/block area, could you elaborate on the repair process please? (removal of fuel rail, sensors)

I appreciate it
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Old 01-27-2012, 10:36 AM
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Ok, stop calling it "the EFI".

Straight sixes don't have that lower intake to block sealing problems that the V8's do. But they do have one other place to that it's common to leak oil from and that's the pushrod cover on the driver's side of the block. That one's easy to access. To get to the valve cover gasket you just need to remove the throttle body and upper intake. It's a very easy job.
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Old 01-27-2012, 05:25 PM
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Quote:
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Ok, stop calling it "the EFI".
But it says "EFI" right on it. That's what it is, obviously


Sorry. So this misnomer is actually the throttle body/upper intake?


Quote:
Originally Posted by andym View Post

Straight sixes don't have that lower intake to block sealing problems that the V8's do. But they do have one other place to that it's common to leak oil from and that's the pushrod cover on the driver's side of the block. That one's easy to access. To get to the valve cover gasket you just need to remove the throttle body and upper intake. It's a very easy job.
Could you elaborate on the location of pushrod cover?

Thanks, and sorry for being such a lamen
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Old 01-27-2012, 05:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JessieDM View Post
Sorry. So this misnomer is actually the throttle body/upper intake?
Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JessieDM View Post
Could you elaborate on the location of pushrod cover?

Thanks, and sorry for being such a lamen
No worries. It runs the length of the motor and it's on the driver's side a few inches above the oil pain. There is a clear view on that side of the motor so it should jump right out at you. There are a couple of bolts holding it on and Ford used a cork gasket at the factory which eventually dries out.
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Old 01-27-2012, 06:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andym View Post
There are a couple of bolts holding it on and Ford used a cork gasket at the factory which eventually dries out.
Only a couple (as in two)? I thought it was more like 10 or 12.
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Old 01-27-2012, 07:19 PM
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I replaced one several years ago when I put a rebuilt motor on and I thought I remembered it being held in place by 3 or 4 center bolts, and not a bunch around the edge. I could be wrong, though. Always possible.
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Old 01-27-2012, 09:09 PM
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Quote:
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I replaced one several years ago when I put a rebuilt motor on and I thought I remembered it being held in place by 3 or 4 center bolts, and not a bunch around the edge. I could be wrong, though. Always possible.
you are correct center of the plate --not around the edges
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Old 01-28-2012, 09:11 AM
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Thanks a lot guys. I think I've located the pushrod cover

It seems that the oil leak only occurs while the engine is running. For this reason, and the fact that I've already replaced the oil pan gasket, I think I can safely rule out the leak originating from the oil pan.

As the engine warms and while running, should I be able to see the leak if it's coming from either of these areas (valve cover gasket or pushrod cover gasket)? Or would it be hard to detect?

Thanks again
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Old 01-28-2012, 09:25 AM
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I would expect it to be hard to locate depending on how dirty things are.

Don't forget the oil pressure sending unit, they will sometimes leak after some time.

You can "wash it and watch it," or maybe get some dye from the auto parts store (I know NAPA has it) you put in your oil that shows up under a black light.
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Old 01-28-2012, 01:50 PM
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Exclamation HELP!!

OK

I replaced the valve cover gasket. It wasn't too easy, but I'm not a mechanical bad-a$$ like you guys apparently

I put it all back together again, and the truck is now idling VERY FAST!!!

I looked all over for a vacuum hose that could have been broken, and all I found was this little red hose-

Click the image to open in full size.

I tried reconnecting it, and it is sucking, but got no change in idle speed. Any guess as to what happened?

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Old 01-28-2012, 01:50 PM
 
 
 
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