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Old 09-07-2009, 05:44 PM   #1
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Default Valve Seals

Mine are shot. Been reading up on them and it doesn't seem like a very involved job, but I would like to hear from someone that has done them before. How difficult is this to do myself with the head still on the engine (engine is out of the car)? Or should I leave it to someone that has done this before?

Since they appear to be very simple and there isn't much to doing them, what would cause these to fail since the head barely has any miles on it (bought used and just had a visual inspection done without taking anything apart)? Anything else to take care of while this is being done?
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Old 09-07-2009, 06:22 PM   #2
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if its still on the engine , your going to need a special tool for removing valve springs since the heads still on the block. not sure where to get it but its going to be expensive thats for sure.

removing and installing the valve stem seals isnt very hard but installing those small keepers is going to be a paint, its gong to make you wish you paid someone to do it all.
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Old 09-07-2009, 06:38 PM   #3
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I take it this was a refreshed head? Failure could have been due to improper installation. I've done stem seals on a 4g63 before, not that much difference. If you want some help, let me know
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Old 09-07-2009, 06:55 PM   #4
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A machine shop refreshed everything and installed the upgraded valvetrain into it according to the previous owner. I didn't have it taken apart and checked when I got it like I should have.

Could you elaborate a bit on the improper installation, from what I see, there's not much to these things, they either work or they don't. I'm starting to think that it will be best to let someone in the know do the work so everything else can be checked at the same time.
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Old 09-07-2009, 07:17 PM   #5
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pull the head and take it to an engine machine shop

thats the easiest cheapest quickest
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Old 09-07-2009, 09:41 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayL View Post
A machine shop refreshed everything and installed the upgraded valvetrain into it according to the previous owner. I didn't have it taken apart and checked when I got it like I should have.

Could you elaborate a bit on the improper installation, from what I see, there's not much to these things, they either work or they don't. I'm starting to think that it will be best to let someone in the know do the work so everything else can be checked at the same time.
They just push in, but I was thinking perhaps it was a diy install by the previous owner and maybe one of the seals could have been damaged/dropped/etc. If it was done by a machine shop I don't see that being the case. Just out of curiosity, how are you sure it is the seals? Oil running down the stems in the ports?
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Old 09-07-2009, 09:50 PM   #7
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You can see the oil running down the stems in the ports and then flowing on the top of the port into my exhaust. It's happening on every cylinder on the exhaust side and on the intake side it's unknown because I'm running so much meth through there it stays clean. Here's a pic, hard to get any light in there.
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Old 09-07-2009, 10:44 PM   #8
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Very strange it would happen on them all. Its so easy to install the seals I don't see how it could be done wrong. Especially since the seals are the same on all valves both intake and exhaust in our motors.
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Old 09-07-2009, 11:30 PM   #9
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That is strange. Are 1.6 and 1.8 seals/valve stem diameter the same? Would think they are the same, but how a shop would install all of them incorrectly (and how you even install them incorrectly, they just push down over the valve guide) is beyond me. I would just pull the head and do it that way. Honestly, if you have never done it, and don't really have the tools I would bring it to a shop. They will probably disassemble, swap the seals and reassemble for under $100. Next time I have to deal with the head I may do this too. It sure is a lot of trouble to go through. Not hard, just tedious.
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Old 09-07-2009, 11:44 PM   #10
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I'm definitely going to be bringing it to a friends shop. He's taken care of everything on the car so far that I haven't been able to do. Should have had him go through the head when I got it, oh well.

Would having the upgraded valvetrain require different seals or would it all be the same for our application regardless. Really starting to wish I knew more about the history of this head. Maybe they just didn't install any seals.
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Old 09-08-2009, 12:16 AM   #11
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Valve stem diameter is the same for 1.6 and 1.8. Same valve stem seals. Upgraded valvetrain does not require anything different as far as stem seals. We do not run enough lift to ever worry about retainer to seal contact. I'm talking like 13+mm.
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Old 09-08-2009, 12:21 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayL View Post
I'm definitely going to be bringing it to a friends shop. He's taken care of everything on the car so far that I haven't been able to do. Should have had him go through the head when I got it, oh well.

Would having the upgraded valvetrain require different seals or would it all be the same for our application regardless. Really starting to wish I knew more about the history of this head. Maybe they just didn't install any seals.
One thing no one has mentioned... I'd be having them check the guide clearances closely, if they're too loose it can allow the valve to move around enough to let oil past.
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Old 09-08-2009, 12:29 AM   #13
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Changed the valve stem seals on my 1.6l with the head still on the car.. takes 2 people and we used an air compressor on each cylinder at TDC.. removed the keepers with some magnets, a socket, and a hammer.. replaced with new viton valve seals and put it all back together with some well cut pvc. Reassembly would have been easy with the head removed and a valve spring compressor.. otherwise the keepers are a nightmare.

I recommend taking the head off and paying a shop to do it.
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Old 09-08-2009, 12:36 AM   #14
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I talked to a very knowledgeable head man when I was having my troubles during my rebuild. He informed me that unless it absolutely needed to be done, don't touch the guides. Original OEM pieces are much better with wear than any guides most machine/cylinder head shops can get. He told me if he did the guides on my head, they may be as worn as they are now at 110k miles (which wasn't much at all) by the time they get to be only 20k-30k miles. This came from the shop owner, and this shop is probably the most highly recommended head shop in the state. So I would hope he knows what he is talking about. And it is my thinking that new guides mean new valves. Since the original valves have worn with the original guides, new guides may leave weird gap between guide and valve stem. So its better to just leave them alone unless you plan to do new valves also. From what I know though, guide clearance isn't nearly as crucial as most of the other clearances in the engine. You would have to have massive sloppy guide wear to have issues.

But to make that short, don't worry about guides. If they are within spec, leave them alone. Throw some seals on and be done with it, no need to get all fancy with it.
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Old 09-08-2009, 01:51 AM   #15
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Ebay has the tool you need. I think you search "one man valve spring compressor". It's something like $80. You don't have to pull the head, just the cams. Comes with the spark plug hole fitting to use a compressor to put pressure on the valve so it doesn't drop into the head.
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Old 09-08-2009, 10:05 AM   #16
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that what was used on my head.

100psi in each cylinder to keep the valve from dropping and the magnetic one man tool to remove the keepers.

its not a hard job, just takes a while.
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Old 09-11-2009, 01:30 AM   #17
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Turns out it's more than just the seals, the guides are fucked as well and that's where I closed my wallet. Sent a pm to the guy who sold it to me and asked him to buy it back, we'll see what happens.
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Old 09-11-2009, 01:34 AM   #18
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I hope you didn't pay more because it was "refreshed and had upgrades". I wouldn't trust someone telling me that more than I would trust Obama telling me his healthcare bill is good for our nation. Good luck getting your money back though, I hope he hasn't already spent it and is in a giving mood.
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Old 09-11-2009, 01:39 AM   #19
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I paid $700 shipped for this head. It was a long time ago so it's well past the paypal claim timeframe for a refund.
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Old 09-11-2009, 01:43 AM   #20
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Damn, thats kind of high isn't is? What year was this head? I don't guess I have really priced heads lately. I was thinking a decent used head would be more like $300-$400 or something.
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