Valve cover oil leak?


Oxxon

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So, this past weekend I finally got around to the changing the spark plugs and wires on the 2002 Ranger I picked up a month ago. When doing this I noticed oil around the last two spark plug wires closest to the firewall as I pull them out. I know the truck is leaking oil but nothing major just a drop now and then. When under the truck it seemed like the oil was coming up from the top. When I went to remove the spark plug directly across from the coil pack it was covered in oil. I'm thinking it is the valve cover gasket. What do you all think?
 


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Dirtman

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Yup. Valve cover gasket. There's a normal outer gasket then inner gaskets that seal oil from getting into the spark plug wells. If it gets bad enough you can start developing misfires. It's a fairly tedious job because you need to remove the intake, fuel rail, and a bunch of lines/hoses to get the valve cover off. I just did mine a few weeks ago.

Make sure you get new intake gaskets and the "upgraded" felpro valve cover set if you do it. Part # VS50639R1
 

RonD

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And premature gasket failure can be caused by not changing/cleaning the PCV system regularly

The PCV system is there to create a Negative pressure inside the crankcase and valve cover areas, this pulls out the "Blow-by" that all piston engines have.

When a cylinder fires, some of the explosive gases(exhaust), "blows by" the piston and rings, the HOT gases also vaporizes some of the oil on the cylinders walls and piston sides as it "blows by", thats were the oil vapor in the engine comes from, its NOT from bearings or valve train :), if they ever ran hot enough to vaporize oil you would have a engine about to BLOW UP, lol

PCV system uses engine vacuum to create the Negative pressure

If PCV system gets clogged up then the "blow-by" causes Positive pressure inside the crankcase and valve covers, which can push oil OUT of the gaskets, starting oil leaks.

At that point the leaks are there, so gaskets need to be changed, but leaks will come back unless you make sure PCV system is working as it should

On the 2.3l Duratec engine the PCV Valve is on the driver side just above oil pan, and its a pain to get at, easiest access is to pull off drivers side front wheel and access it thru inner fender .
Ford recommends changing it once a year, but most do it every 2 years, but thats owners choice
 
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Dirtman

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So friggin big!
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To add to what Ron said about the PCV valve. Yes it's a pain to get at and the plastic elbows are prone to crack and since it's a semi rigid connection it's difficult to get routed back up behind the engine.

I got frustrated the last time I did it and replaced the entire hose and elbow assembly with a length of 5/8" ID high temp silicone vacuum line. It makes the job 100% easier. And only cost about 10 bucks.
 

Oxxon

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Thanks for all the info.
 


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