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Valve Cover Gasket Leaks

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jimsnjos
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Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2018 11:30 am

Valve Cover Gasket Leaks

Post #1 by jimsnjos » Mon Jan 07, 2019 6:09 pm

Well, another question for you in my qwest to get my old 233 cu. in running well again. This time my question is, how do I get the valve cover gasket mounted to the head and not end up with an oil leak after a test drive. Sounds pretty simple but I have gone through 3, yes 3 gaskets and still cannot get a good seal. I have tried both sides dry, one side with a Permatex gasket sealer and both sides with gasket sealer, still I have leaks. I have checked the valve cover for straightness and flattness and have gone over the top of the head as well looking for high and low spots. And the two hold down bolts have been torqued to 2 1/2 pounds each time. Thank you again, I welcome any suggestions, directions, clues or secret methods that you have found to be successful.

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bubba22349
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Re: Valve Cover Gasket Leaks

Post #2 by bubba22349 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 6:39 pm

jimsnjos wrote:Well, another question for you in my qwest to get my old 233 cu. in running well again. This time my question is, how do I get the valve cover gasket mounted to the head and not end up with an oil leak after a test drive. Sounds pretty simple but I have gone through 3, yes 3 gaskets and still cannot get a good seal. I have tried both sides dry, one side with a Permatex gasket sealer and both sides with gasket sealer, still I have leaks. I have checked the valve cover for straightness and flattness and have gone over the top of the head as well looking for high and low spots. And the two hold down bolts have been torqued to 2 1/2 pounds each time. Thank you again, I welcome any suggestions, directions, clues or secret methods that you have found to be successful.


Besides the valve cover rails needing to be nice and straight the top of the valve cover also needs to be fairly straight. I have seen a few over the years where they were caved in quite a lot from being tightened down way too much. I glue my gaskets good to the valve cover first using some contact adhesive like for weather stripping. Next set then them aside on a good flat surface overnight to wait until it's dry so the gasket isn't moving around, this also allows the valve cover to be easily removed to set valves 1 to 2 adistional times. I usally use a bit of Permatex non Hardening (paste type) #2? on the surface contacting the top of the head. Good luck :thumbup: :nod:
A bad day Drag Racing is still better than a good day at work!

I am still hunting for a project car to build but with my current low budget it's not looking so good. My Ex- Fleet of Sixes these are all long gone! :bang: 1954 Customline 223 3 speed with O/D, 1963 Fairlane project drag car with BB6, 1977 Maverick 250 with C4, 1994 F-150 a 300 with 5 speed.

jimsnjos
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Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2018 11:30 am

Re: Valve Cover Gasket Leaks

Post #3 by jimsnjos » Wed Jan 09, 2019 3:01 pm

Thanks Bubba for your suggestion and I am prepping the cover and gasket today for hopefully a good installation tomorrow.
It is interesting that the head surface on my 223 where the valve cover meets the surface is a non-machined casting more of a rail. I have seen other 223 engine heads where that surface is actually a clean flat machined surface making the valve cover and gasket a case for a better seal. Thanks again for your guidance.

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