Connect with us


DIY Guide: Replacing Valve Cover Gasket




Replacing a valve cover gasket is a common maintenance task for car owners. The valve cover gasket sits between the cylinder head and the valve cover, preventing oil from leaking out of the engine. Over time, this gasket can become worn or damaged, causing oil leaks that can lead to engine damage if left unaddressed.

The process of replacing a valve cover gasket varies depending on the make and model of your car, but generally involves removing the old gasket, cleaning any debris or residue from the surface area, and installing a new gasket in its place. It’s important to use high-quality replacement parts and follow manufacturer guidelines when performing this task.

If you notice signs of an oil leak (such as oil spots under your car), it’s important to address them promptly by checking your valve cover gasket for wear or damage. Replacing a faulty valve cover gasket can help ensure proper engine function and prevent costly repairs down the line.

Tools and Materials Needed

Replacing a valve cover gasket requires certain tools and materials to ensure that the job is done correctly. Here are some of the tools and materials needed:


  • Ratchet wrench set
  • Screwdriver set
  • Torque wrench
  • Gasket scraper or putty knife
  • Clean rag or towel for wiping surfaces clean
  • A small container for collecting bolts, nuts, and other small parts as you remove them from the engine.


    Note: The materials needed may vary depending on your vehicle make and model. Consult your owner’s manual or mechanic if you’re not sure what specific parts are required.

    The following list includes some of the common materials used in replacing valve cover gaskets:

    Materials Needed:
    Gasket sealant – This is applied to both sides of the new gasket before installation to help create a better seal between the valve cover and engine block. There are several types available depending on your preference, but most mechanics recommend using silicone-based gasket sealants because they offer superior adhesion properties compared to other types.
    New Valve Cover Gasket – This is often sold as part of a kit that includes other gaskets and seals needed for the job. Make sure to get a valve cover gasket that is specific to your vehicle make and model.
    Replacement bolts, nuts or clips – Depending on your vehicle’s make and model, you may need to replace some of the old bolts, nuts or clips with new ones during installation. This is especially true if they have been stripped or damaged in any way.
    Cleaner/degreaser – Before installing the new valve cover gasket, it’s important to clean off any old oil residue from both the engine block and valve cover. Use a high-quality cleaner/degreaser that won’t damage rubber components such as hoses or belts.

By having all of these tools and materials on hand before starting this job, you can ensure that you complete the job correctly without encountering any hiccups along the way.

Preparing the Vehicle for Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

Before starting the valve cover gasket replacement process, there are a few things you need to do to prepare your vehicle. These steps will ensure that you have a clean and safe working environment and that your car is ready for the repair.

Gather Your Tools and Materials

The first step in preparing your vehicle for valve cover gasket replacement is to gather all the necessary tools and materials. This includes a socket set, torque wrench, screwdrivers, pliers, rags, gasket sealant or RTV silicone, and of course the new valve cover gasket.

Clean the Engine Bay

The next step is to clean the engine bay thoroughly. This will help prevent dirt and debris from falling into your engine while you work on it. Start by removing any loose debris using an air compressor or vacuum cleaner. Then wipe down all surfaces with a degreaser solution to remove any oil or grime buildup.

Drain Any Fluids

If your valve cover has breather hoses attached to it or if there are other components in close proximity that may get in your way during this job then draining fluids such as coolant might be required before starting work on replacing valve cover gaskets.

Remove Obstructions

You’ll also want to remove any obstructions that may hinder access to certain areas of the engine. This could include items like air intake tubing or battery trays depending on where these parts are located relative to where they sit atop their respective engines’ cylinder heads (or blocks). Removing these parts can be accomplished with simple hand tools such as sockets & ratchets along with screwdrivers & pliers when needed.

In Conclusion

Preparing your vehicle for valve cover gasket replacement is an important step in ensuring a successful repair. By gathering the necessary tools and materials, cleaning the engine bay, draining fluids if required, and removing any obstructions that may hinder access to certain areas of the engine; you’ll be well on your way to completing this job with ease.

Removing the Valve Cover

Before you can replace the valve cover gasket, you need to remove the valve cover. Here are the steps on how to do it:

1. Disconnect the negative battery cable: This is important to avoid any electrical accident while working under your car’s hood.

2. Locate the valve cover: The location of your engine’s valve cover may vary depending on your vehicle make and model. However, it is often found on top of your engine block.

3. Remove any components obstructing access: If there are any parts or components that prevent you from accessing the valve cover, such as air intake ducts or hoses, remove them first.

4. Loosen and remove bolts holding down the valve cover: Use a socket wrench or adjustable wrench to loosen and remove all bolts securing the valve cover in place.

5. Gently pry off the valve cover: Once all bolts have been removed, gently pry off the old gasket using a flathead screwdriver or similar tool.

6. Clean up debris and old gasket material from around valves and spark plugs: Before installing a new gasket, make sure that there is no debris left behind on top of your engine block where valves and spark plugs are located.

7. Inspect for damage or wear on both sides of gasket surfaces: Check both sides of each surface where a new gasket will be installed carefully for any signs of damage or wear that could cause leaks later on.

By following these steps carefully when removing a faulty valve cover from an automobile engine block, one can ensure their safety while also avoiding further damages during repairs leading up to replacing its damaged seal with another more effective solution like silicone-based adhesive materials designed specifically for this purpose!

Cleaning the Valve Cover and Cylinder Head

Before installing a new valve cover gasket, it is important to thoroughly clean the valve cover and cylinder head. This will help ensure that there are no leaks due to debris or old gasket material interfering with the seal.

To begin cleaning, remove any loose debris from the surface of both the valve cover and cylinder head. This can be done using compressed air or a soft-bristled brush. Next, use a degreaser or engine cleaner to break down any oil or grease buildup on both surfaces.

After applying the degreaser, allow it to sit for several minutes before wiping away with a clean rag. It may be necessary to repeat this step multiple times until all residue has been removed. Be sure to also clean any bolts or fasteners that will be reused during reassembly.

Once both surfaces are completely free of debris and residue, inspect them for any damage or warping. If either surface is damaged beyond repair, it may need to be replaced before continuing with installation of the new gasket.

In addition to cleaning and inspecting these surfaces, it is also recommended to replace other components such as PCV valves and spark plug tube seals while performing this maintenance task.

By taking these steps when replacing a valve cover gasket, you can help ensure proper sealing between the valve cover and cylinder head for optimal engine performance.

Installing the New Valve Cover Gasket

Now that you have removed the old valve cover gasket, it’s time to install a new one. Follow these steps for a successful installation:

  1. Clean the valve cover and engine surface where the gasket sits using a clean rag or towel. Make sure there is no debris or oil left on either surface.
  2. Place the new gasket onto the valve cover making sure it fits correctly and all bolt holes align properly.
  3. Apply gasket sealer to both sides of the gasket (the side that touches the engine and valve cover). This will ensure a tight seal once everything is put back together.
  4. Carefully place the valve cover with attached new gasket onto its original location on top of your engine, making sure all bolts line up with their respective holes in your engine block.
  5. Screw in each bolt by hand until they are snug, then tighten them down evenly using a torque wrench. The proper torque setting can be found in your vehicle’s manual or online resources for your specific make/model/year combination.
  6. If applicable, reattach any hoses or electrical connections that were disconnected earlier during removal process. Double check everything has been reconnected as necessary before starting up your vehicle again!

    Congratulations! You have successfully replaced your old worn-out valve cover gaskets with brand-new ones! Remember to keep an eye out for any leaks and address them immediately if they occur. Regular maintenance such as this will help prolong life of internal components inside engine compartment leading to better performance overall!

    Replacing the Valve Cover and Torqueing the Bolts

    If you have determined that your valve cover gasket needs to be replaced, it is also a good idea to replace the valve cover itself. Over time, valve covers can become warped or damaged, which can cause oil leaks even with a new gasket in place.

    To begin replacing the valve cover, first remove any components that are in the way such as air intake ducts or spark plug wires. Then use a socket wrench to loosen and remove all of the bolts holding the valve cover in place. Keep these bolts organized so they can be easily reinstalled later.

    Once all of the bolts are removed, gently lift off the old valve cover and set it aside. You may want to clean any debris or old gasket material from around where it was seated before installing your new one.

    Before installing your new valve cover, make sure that it fits correctly and has no visible damage. Apply a thin layer of high-temperature RTV silicone sealant around both sides of your new gasket before placing it onto your engine block.

    Carefully lower your new valve cover into place over top of this gasket making sure that all bolt holes align properly with those on your engine block. Reinstall each bolt by hand until snug but not fully tightened yet.

    Using an appropriate torque wrench for your vehicle’s specifications (which should be found either through research online or within its owner’s manual), tighten each bolt down to its recommended torque setting gradually working across them from side-to-side rather than tightening them down one-by-one sequentially.

    Finally, double-check that everything is securely fastened before starting up again to ensure there are no leaks occurring anywhere along this newly-installed part!

    Testing for Leaks and Final Steps

    After replacing the valve cover gasket, it is important to test for leaks before putting everything back together. To do this, start the engine and let it run for a few minutes while keeping an eye on the valve cover area. If there are no visible leaks, turn off the engine and inspect the work area thoroughly.

    If you notice any oil seeping out from under the valve cover or see any signs of oil on other parts of the engine, this could indicate a leak. In this case, you will need to remove the valve cover again and check that all bolts are tightened properly. You may also need to replace any damaged gaskets or seals.

    Once you have confirmed that there are no leaks, it’s time to put everything back together. Replace any removed components such as spark plug wires or electrical connectors in their proper locations. Reconnect any hoses or lines that were disconnected during removal.

    Before starting your vehicle once more, double-check that all bolts have been tightened properly and that all connections have been made correctly. Start your vehicle and listen carefully for any unusual noises or vibrations coming from your engine.

    Take your car for a short drive around town so that you can monitor its performance closely; if everything seems normal after driving around town for awhile then congratulations! Your new valve cover gasket has been installed successfully!

    In conclusion, replacing a faulty valve cover gasket is an essential part of maintaining your vehicle’s health over time – but be sure to follow these steps carefully in order to avoid costly mistakes down the road!


    In conclusion, replacing a valve cover gasket is a relatively simple and straightforward process that can save car owners from costly repairs in the long run. By following the steps outlined in this article and using the right tools, anyone with basic mechanical knowledge can replace their own valve cover gasket.

    It is important to keep an eye out for signs of wear and tear on your valve cover gasket such as oil leaks or engine misfires. If left unchecked, these issues can cause serious damage to your engine and lead to more expensive repairs down the line.

    When choosing a replacement gasket, it is important to select one that is made from high-quality materials such as silicone or rubber. This will ensure that it lasts longer and provides better protection against oil leaks.

    Overall, replacing a valve cover gasket should be part of any car owner’s regular maintenance routine. It may seem like a small task but it can go a long way in keeping your engine running smoothly for years to come.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent comments

About us is an online resource with guides & diagrams for all kinds of vehicles. If you look for a fuse box diagram, timing belt diagram, or maybe wiring diagram – this is a place for you. We also have over 350 guides & DIY articles about cars.


Copyright © 2015-2023