3.8 rear valve cover replacement [Archive] - The Chrysler Minivan Fan Club Forums

: 3.8 rear valve cover replacement



flybyy
02-07-2004, 04:03 AM
;) just about to put cover gaskets on my lxi 3.8. The rear cover appears to be a bit of a job. Any tips on how best to get at it?? thx.. Ben

DSMLVR
02-07-2004, 07:14 AM
Is the cover/gasket bad or just leaking? Did you try a tighten down of the bolts on it already? NOT real tight, but snug the bolts down and see if (IF leaking IS your problem) it stops. The service manual calls them CYLINDER HEAD COVERS.
Here is the 2002 Service Manual instructions:

CYLINDER HEAD COVER(S)
DESCRIPTION
The cylinder head covers are made of stamped
steel. The covers are sealed with steel reinforced sil-icon
rubber gaskets. The cylinder head cover uses
rubber isolators at each fastener location .
NOTE: Due to the tight packaging near the cylinder
head covers, which makes spill clean-up difficult, a
spill during an engine oil change may be misinter-preted
as an oil leak. When investigating an oil leak
in the location of the cylinder head covers and
intake manifold, follow the procedure found in Oil
Leak Diagnosis (Refer to 9 - ENGINE - DIAGNOSIS
CYLINDER HEAD COVER -RIGHT
REMOVAL (REAR COVER)
(1) Disconnect negative cable from battery.
(2) Remove the wiper module. (Refer to 8 - ELEC-TRICAL/
WIPERS/WASHERS/WIPER MODULE -REMOVAL)
(3) Disconnect spark plug wires from plugs.
(4) Disconnect power steering pump supply hose
support clip from cylinder head cover .
(5) Disconnect PCV hose from cylinder head cover.
(6) Remove cylinder head cover bolts.
(7) Remove cylinder head cover and gasket INSTALLATION
(1) Clean cylinder head and cover mating surfaces.
Inspect cylinder head cover surface for flatness.
Replace gasket as necessary.
(2) Inspect seal on the cover bolt for wear or damage.
Replace bolt assembly as necessary.
NOTE: The cylinder head cover bolts contain a
torque limiter sleeve and a seal (Fig. 26). The seal
and torque sleeve is replaced with the bolt.
(3) Assemble gasket to cylinder cover by inserting
the bolt assemblies through each bolt hole on the
cover and gasket (Fig. 26).
(4) Install cylinder head cover and bolts (Fig. 27).
(5) Tighten cylinder head cover bolts to 12 Nm
(105 in. lbs.) (Fig. 27).
(6) Connect PCV hose to cylinder head cover.
(7) Connect power steering pump supply hose sup-port
clip to cylinder head cover (Fig. 24).
(8) Connect spark plug wires to spark plugs.
(9) Install wiper module. (Refer to 8 - ELECTRI-CAL/
WIPERS/WASHERS/WIPER MODULE -INSTALLATION)
(10) Connect negative cable to battery.

CYLINDER HEAD COVER -LEFT
REMOVAL (FRONT COVER)
(1) Disconnect spark plug wires from spark plugs.
(2) Disconnect crankcase vent hose from cylinder
head cover.
(3) Remove cylinder head cover bolts.
(4) Remove cylinder head cover and gasket.
INSTALLATION
(1) Clean cylinder head and cover mating surfaces.
Inspect cylinder head cover surface for flatness.
Replace gasket as necessary.
(2) Assemble gasket to cylinder cover by inserting
the fasteners through each bolt hole on cover and
gasket (Fig. 26).
(3) Install the cylinder head cover and bolts (Fig.
27).
(4) Tighten cylinder head cover bolts to 12 Nm
(105 in. lbs.) (Fig. 27).
(5) Connect crankcase vent hose.
(6) Connect spark plug wires to spark plugs.


Since you did not tell what year you have , this is all the info I can give. It is pretty much the same for all years.

GOOD LUCK

flybyy
02-07-2004, 10:07 AM
thx for the info.. in case it matters.. its a 1998. I think it is most likely a leak due to the 70k miles. My big concern was getting the cover out from under the cast intake 'spider' that is on top of it. The front is wide open but the back looked a little tougher to get at. I may try tightening for a week just to see if I get lucky.. thx again.. any additional would be appreciated.. thx..Ben
:thumbup

sellinghomes4u
02-07-2004, 04:48 PM
You need to remove the intake.
Larry

flybyy
02-07-2004, 05:44 PM
that's not funny... I know your kidding..ha..ha.. right?.. I mean..its just a freakin valve cover.. no way.. right?.. huh.. uh.. ok..no..really.. not the intake...ahhhhhhh!!!!!!!! maybe it doesnt leak thaaat bad.. ugh.. :angry:

Woggy
02-07-2004, 07:29 PM
I was thinking of doing the same thing as Flybyy, in the spring. But now.....well now that I really look at it it's not bad.

sellinghomes4u
02-08-2004, 07:42 AM
The manual calls for removal of the intake for plugs too (but they can be done without). It's not that hard. AAMOF next time I do my 99's plugs (it will have over 200k than) I intend to remove the intake since it's easier than snaking my arm between the firewall and exhaust pipe. Besides it'll probably need vc gaskets by than ;-)
Larry

DSMLVR
02-08-2004, 07:49 AM
Removing plugs WITHOUT removing the intake is different then trying to remove something the size of the valve cover. :cry You MAY beable to do it, but WOULD it be worth the time and trouble of doing it that way? I remove plugs ALL the time, WITHOUT removing the intake. But I would never try it with the valve cover. :nope

flybyy
02-08-2004, 09:35 AM
just makes me miss the days of my old V-8s where you could pretty much remove anything in 30 minutes with a 1/2 inch box wrench and a tune up required a screwdriver and a dwell tach, not a 1300 dollar meter.. (or a 60 dollar stealership diagnostic to turn out a flashing light)... nah well.. I guess all the performance and mileage make up for it somehow... <S> <_<

sellinghomes4u
02-09-2004, 07:49 AM
Yeah I miss those days too, but than a vehicle couldn&#39;t go more than 10000 miles without some kind of tune up attention, carb adj, points etc. Of course I was wrenching for a living in those golden days and it was gravy work. But than there was other faux pas like the 429 mustang which needed the motor mounts pulled and the engine yanked upwards to give enough clearance to get the plugs and even than it was a bal....er knuckle buster.
They&#39;re really not that bad unless you get into some of the foreign crap but even that is getting better.
Larry

flybyy
02-09-2004, 08:27 AM
That&#39;s cuz most of em are made here.. <S> They only send the money home.. but then again... DC??

meseville
02-15-2004, 12:10 PM
Hey, I just found this website and much to my suprise this topic is exactly what I am looking for&#33; Right now, in my garage is my 1998 T&C 3.8L that I am trying replace the valve cover gaskets. Did I mension that this van has 75,000 miles? Seems like flybyy any myself have the identical problem and same van&#33; Oh, I not thinking about fixing it I have ALREADY STARTED TARE DOWN&#33; By the way, the 1998 Chrysler shop manual is almost useless in its discription of changing the back valve cover gasket.

Lets get serious now.

1) I have owned 1987, 1993, and 1998 Chrysler vans and engine access to the back valve cover is not bad in the 87 & 93 buy absolutely horable in the 98 3.8L.

2) There is no reason to remove the spark plug wires to the front bank because the wires do not run over the valve cover gaskets.

3) There is a brace between the rear head and the cast intake &#39;spider&#39; that needs to be removed. You can see this brace by looking between the throttle body and the rear head. The brace is bolted into the head by a 15mm bolt. Access to this bolt is not easy but I was able to get to it with my septentine belt removal tool.

4) My cast intake &#39;spider&#39; is mostly loose but is still hung up on something in the back. I suspect there is one or more braces there or maybe a wire or hose is bolted on back there. I&#39;d love to have a picture if the back of the 3.8L engine, does anyone have a picture?

5) Ths rear spark plugs on my 87 3.0L and 93 3.3L were easy to access from under the vans. There are tons of room back there. I will jack up the 98 today and hopefully there will be tons of room back there also and I hope I can see and free up my cast intake &#39;spider&#39;.

4) From what I have observed, I seriously doubt the valve cover can be removed without first removing the cast intake &#39;spider&#39;.

I am serious about fixing this because my van is in pieces. So thanks in advance for you guidance.


Bob

meseville
02-15-2004, 05:29 PM
I got the valve covers off&#33; Here&#39;s what the shop manual fails to say.
1) there&#39;s a 1/2" steel tube that runs between the exhaust pipe to the ERG valve. You must at least disconnect one end.
2) there&#39;s a metal bar that runs accross the rear of the cast intake &#39;spider&#39; that some wires are attached to. you need to remove this bar.
3) of course you need to either remove the throttle body or disconnect all its tubes, wires, and cables.
4) disconnect all the misc vaccume lines.
5) remove the brace that I mensioned in an earlier responce.
6) remove cast intake &#39;spider&#39;.
7) Remove the fuel rails. Why didn&#39;t the shop manul mension this&#33;
8) remove the valve covers.

Misc comments.
1) half of my valve cover bolts were loose. The gasket is a style that I believe mainly seals with a gasket sealer. Therefore I doubt that just tightening these bolts would have stopped the oil leak.

Well I need to purchase some parts before reassembly. If someone offeres to replace these gaskets for lets say &#036;300 or less I would strongly suggest that you give them the job because this is NOT a fun job&#33;

Bob

flybyy
02-15-2004, 07:37 PM
Welcome meseville, I am a newbie myself. Seems you are a DIY&#39;er like me. Perhaps we can trade some tech tips on our 98&#39;s over the next little while.. mine is all sealed up.. I ended up replacing the front cover gasket and tightening the back... and so far so good.. probably until tomorrow now that I have said it out loud.. anyhow.. the next thing I need is some misc body parts and a new seat cushion for the driver.. old owner was apparenlty.. uh... large.. anyhow.. sounds like you are / were elbow deep in covers and spiders.. have fun.. Ben :tup

sellinghomes4u
02-16-2004, 08:09 AM
NOt sure why you all are haveing so many vc gasket troubles. My 99 has in excess of 150k miles and not a drop leaks anywhere, my departed 92 went to it&#39;s heavenly reward at 176k no leaks and my 93 didn&#39;t have anything done until 180+.
Of course I don&#39;t put anything in my engines but but good oil and filters every 3 mos or 3k no additives no "special" oils just good 10-30.
Larry

flybyy
02-16-2004, 12:28 PM
I bought mine used, so I have no idea the history.. just know it leaked... trying to get it back up to snuff.. :cyclop

meseville
02-21-2004, 05:29 PM
Gaskets changed and van back in service. It took 6 hours and two trips for parts. Most of the 6 hours was trial and error. I believe I could replace the gaskets next time in about 2-3 hours but I&#39;m not volunteering.

flybyy: If you do choose to change the back gasket, I can provide some advice to prevent you from making most of the mistakes that I made.

sellinghomes4u: Thanks for the info on the spark plugs. Even though my plugs only had 76,000 miles on them, I chose to replace them because with the air plenum off I had excellent access to the back plugs.

I&#39;m not sure why the covers were leaking. I don&#39;t add additives to the oil. I change oil and filters every 2000 miles. I have not had leakage problems on my other vans. There are two factors that may have contributed. First, half the bolts in the valve covers were loose. Second, stay with me on this, there is a molded sound-deadner/insellation that runs up the fire wall then turns out under the windshield-wiper-unit. This molded thing is suposed to hug thr bottom of the wiper unit but had sagged so that it was laying ontop of the intake plenum blocking all access to the back of the engine. Could this blockage have also cut off needed air circulation for cooling purposes? Anyway I bolted the molded thing up to where its suppose to be.

Bob

Dbird
06-10-2006, 01:18 PM
Is the cover/gasket bad or just leaking? Did you try a tighten down of the bolts on it already? NOT real tight, but snug the bolts down and see if (IF leaking IS your problem) it stops. The service manual calls them CYLINDER HEAD COVERS.
Here is the 2002 Service Manual instructions:

CYLINDER HEAD COVER(S)
DESCRIPTION
The cylinder head covers are made of stamped
steel. The covers are sealed with steel reinforced sil-icon
rubber gaskets. The cylinder head cover uses
rubber isolators at each fastener location .
NOTE: Due to the tight packaging near the cylinder
head covers, which makes spill clean-up difficult, a
spill during an engine oil change may be misinter-preted
as an oil leak. When investigating an oil leak
in the location of the cylinder head covers and
intake manifold, follow the procedure found in Oil
Leak Diagnosis (Refer to 9 - ENGINE - DIAGNOSIS
CYLINDER HEAD COVER -RIGHT
REMOVAL (REAR COVER)
(1) Disconnect negative cable from battery.
(2) Remove the wiper module. (Refer to 8 - ELEC-TRICAL/
WIPERS/WASHERS/WIPER MODULE -REMOVAL)
(3) Disconnect spark plug wires from plugs.
(4) Disconnect power steering pump supply hose
support clip from cylinder head cover .
(5) Disconnect PCV hose from cylinder head cover.
(6) Remove cylinder head cover bolts.
(7) Remove cylinder head cover and gasket INSTALLATION
(1) Clean cylinder head and cover mating surfaces.
Inspect cylinder head cover surface for flatness.
Replace gasket as necessary.
(2) Inspect seal on the cover bolt for wear or damage.
Replace bolt assembly as necessary.
NOTE: The cylinder head cover bolts contain a
torque limiter sleeve and a seal (Fig. 26). The seal
and torque sleeve is replaced with the bolt.
(3) Assemble gasket to cylinder cover by inserting
the bolt assemblies through each bolt hole on the
cover and gasket (Fig. 26).
(4) Install cylinder head cover and bolts (Fig. 27).
(5) Tighten cylinder head cover bolts to 12 Nm
(105 in. lbs.) (Fig. 27).
(6) Connect PCV hose to cylinder head cover.
(7) Connect power steering pump supply hose sup-port
clip to cylinder head cover (Fig. 24).
(8) Connect spark plug wires to spark plugs.
(9) Install wiper module. (Refer to 8 - ELECTRI-CAL/
WIPERS/WASHERS/WIPER MODULE -INSTALLATION)
(10) Connect negative cable to battery.

CYLINDER HEAD COVER -LEFT
REMOVAL (FRONT COVER)
(1) Disconnect spark plug wires from spark plugs.
(2) Disconnect crankcase vent hose from cylinder
head cover.
(3) Remove cylinder head cover bolts.
(4) Remove cylinder head cover and gasket.
INSTALLATION
(1) Clean cylinder head and cover mating surfaces.
Inspect cylinder head cover surface for flatness.
Replace gasket as necessary.
(2) Assemble gasket to cylinder cover by inserting
the fasteners through each bolt hole on cover and
gasket (Fig. 26).
(3) Install the cylinder head cover and bolts (Fig.
27).
(4) Tighten cylinder head cover bolts to 12 Nm
(105 in. lbs.) (Fig. 27).
(5) Connect crankcase vent hose.
(6) Connect spark plug wires to spark plugs.


Since you did not tell what year you have , this is all the info I can give. It is pretty much the same for all years.

GOOD LUCK
Hi i'm new to this site, i own a 96 GC 3.3 V6 and i need to change my valve cover gasket front and rear is this info for the 96 GC w/ 3.3L.Already buy parts and need full step by step info.Thanks in advance. Dbird

flybyy
06-10-2006, 02:13 PM
front one is fairly obvious, back one you need to remove the intake plenum, also the windshield wiper assembly. Then you can get it quite easily. Lots of nuts and bolts, but not a hard job. Just dont drop anything down your intake when you have it off <S> that's a longer harder job.. enjoy