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Engine: Car parts catalogue

Engine: valve cover

Valve cover is a component of the engine block of the four-stroke internal combustion engine. There are a lot of engines that operate with valves, and they need to integrate the valves into the engine system. Valve cover’s function is to receive a portion of the valve train, namely the upper actuation elements. But it has one more very important function. It serves to prevent oil leakage from the engine and to avoid further air ingress into the engine. Some of valve covers have one more small cover. It is an oil filler hole for engine. There is more to come.

A number of car models have valves that are operated via a single overhead camshaft. If this camshaft is driven by a chain, then the valve cover includes camshaft sprockets. The valve cover is placed on the cylinder head. In Addition, there is valve cover gasket, also known as a cylinder head gasket. In today's cars, the seal is made up almost entirely of rubber or plastic. In modern cars gaskets are mainly made of rubber or plastic.

The valve cover should be always connected to the cylinder head. But the most important is the gasket to function and to be hermetic. Valve cover is a durable car part. But the gasket can leak. You can note this if you see wet spots that quickly become dark because of dust and dirt. If the gasket leaks, it is necessary to replace it. A non- specialist can also replace it. Gaskets and other car parts as valve cover, catalyst, air conditioner compressor you will find in our online shop.

How to detect a faulty cylinder head

Diagnostics of the component is quite complex and time-consuming, and requires the use of special measurement equipment, so it is better to be entrusted to professionals. It may be performed in several stages. First, geometrical parameters of the cylinder head elements - valve guide bushes and valves themselves - are measured, and their location relative to the cylinder head body is examined. Then, the state of the cooling cavity of the unit is assessed. Cracks, cavitations, porosity, and metal warping indicate the need of repair or replacement. To detect concealed damages, a special equipment is used which allows detecting leakage in cooling channels.

You may notice that the cylinder head needs diagnostics by the following symptoms:

  • engine overheating;
  • engine misses strokes when running;
  • smell of exhaust fumes from under the hood;
  • traces of engine oil in the coolant;
  • white thick smoke from the exhaust pipe;
  • extraneous sounds during engine operation;
  • oil leakage from under the cylinder head cover.

The reasons of cylinder head malfunctions

Most malfunctions of the cylinder head, in particular, cracks in the camshaft and accelerated wear of valve guides, are caused by failure to follow recommendations on vehicle use, which significantly increases the load on the engine. The optimum engine operation mode is achieved by driving at medium rpm, because the driving at low rpm in some vehicles makes the oil pump operate at low flow rate, and components are lubricated insufficiently, while high rpm increases friction and abrasive wear of engine components. In the cold season, do not start driving without preheating the engine.

Also, the reason of many malfunctions of the unit is engine overheating. Extremely high temperatures result in deformation of the cylinder head body. This disrupts tightness of joint of the cylinder block and the cylinder head, which contributes to premature wear of the cooling system and components of the engine. Besides, abrupt temperature changes increase the risk of appearance of cracks between the channels of the cooling and the lubrication systems. Ingress of oil into the cooling system reduces its efficiency, increasing the probability of engine overheating. However, ingress of antifreeze into the oil pan is much more dangerous. In this case, the use of the vehicle should be immediately stopped.

Using poor quality coolant and oil, or failure to replace them in time results in premature clogging of respective channels, and contributes to formation of carbon deposit on their surface.

Repairing cylinder head

The scope and reasonability of repair are determined by specialists during diagnostics. Sometimes, replacing valve stem oil seals, valves, their seats and guide bushes, and cleaning channels from soot deposit and dirt are sufficient for restoring the unit serviceability. Small cracks are repaired by welding, and valve faces are renewed by grinding. If the component is deformed, seating wells for valve bushes are worn out, or wear is too severe, the cylinder head should be replaced.

Replacing cylinder head

Dismantling cylinder head is accompanied by removing many components and assemblies, and draining fluids. During reassembly, it is important to tighten the mounting bolts with certain torque according to the special layout. This is a very complicated and important process. Therefore, cylinder head should be replaced at a specialized service station.

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RIDEX 977C0009 Valve cover cost £ 35,61 Parts Details
  • Supplementary Article/Supplementary Info: with seal
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  • Material: Plastic
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