Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

1987BroncoProject

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We have a 1987 Ford Bronco. It starts well but there is a lot of oil coming from the valve covers. I first tried just tightening down the bolts but it still leaks back on the passenger side close to the firewall. Ok so I got the rubber gaskets from Auto Zone. I just don't know how to do this. It looks like I have to take a lot of things off in order to get down to the valve covers, like the EFI. Anyone have suggestions or a step by step way to go about it? Also how difficult is this on a scale of 1-10? Thanks a lot!!

 

OHMY

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Feb 7, 2009
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I have an 86 Bronco and replaced my valve cover gaskets. I had to remove the throttle body chamber.So basicly it was like taking the top end apart. So watch where all bolts go because they are the same size but differant lenghts. You can do it but it is time consuming.

 

beast runner

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We have a 1987 Ford Bronco. It starts well but there is a lot of oil coming from the valve covers. I first tried just tightening down the bolts but it still leaks back on the passenger side close to the firewall. Ok so I got the rubber gaskets from Auto Zone. I just don't know how to do this. It looks like I have to take a lot of things off in order to get down to the valve covers, like the EFI. Anyone have suggestions or a step by step way to go about it? Also how difficult is this on a scale of 1-10? Thanks a lot!!
I just did valve cover gaskets on my 88 5.0L Eddie Bauer. There is a fair amount of work involved here...on a 1-10 I'd say this is about a 5. The kit that I bought was a Fel Pro kit that included both cork valve cover gaskets, upper intake gasket, throttle body gasket, distributor O ring, and 2 other ones that I didn't use.

I started on the left bank because it seemed like there was less work here and there was. First, you need to get the intake duct work out of the way, disconnect the throttle linkage, then you'll have to get the wiring out of the way. I had to take spark plug wires off the plugs to get the cover off. (a good way to identify the proper placement of the wires is to use a spark plug wire loom and place them in order using the open end as your front and place them first wire in the first slot and so on). You will need to remove your ignition coil which will require a 7/16" deep socket, on the side of the coil bracket there will be a plate with 3 or 4 plugs on it that needs to be removed as well. Grab a serp belt removal tool and pop the belt off, take the a/c compressor off and lay it on the left inner fender. Next, there is 6 bolts holding the valve cover on that will be 7/16. I used a deep socket because mine had the studs for mounting wire looms. Once you get all the bolts out you should be ready to lift the cover off. You may need to use a rubber mallet to break the seal by taping the sides of the cover. Remove all of the old gasket with a scraper, make sure both mating surfaces are clean, use some Permatex red form-a-gasket so the gasket stays in place when putting the cover back on, then put 'er back together. Now on to the harder part...

Too get to the right valve cover, you'll need to take the Upper Intake Plenum off. To start with, there is a group of vacuum lines that need to be taken off from the top, there are 2 vacuum lines that are on the side of the throttle body, the EGR needs to be unplugged first then unbolted from the plenum using a 7/16. Once all the linkage, vacuum lines and electrical connectors are off, you will notice there are still 2 hoses attached to the throttle body. These are COOLANT LINES. One will be on a nipple near the top and one near the bottom. Take these off and plug with a bolt so you don't get coolant leaking all over. Now we're ready to take off the upper intake plenum. Grab a 1/2" deep socket, a 3" extention, a 6" extention, and a T-15 Torx bit. There will be 5 bolts with a 1/2" head and 1 torx bolt. The torx bolt is in the middle of the plenum and will be on YOUR left when you look at the motor. There will be an opening about 1/2 way back that is too narrow to get a socket thru. Take the upper intake off and set aside. You will need a 7/8 wrench to remove the EGR. Remove the valve cover, clean both mating surfaces and start putting it back together.IMG-20111112-00519.jpg

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IMG-20111113-00521.jpg

 

beast runner

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We have a 1987 Ford Bronco. It starts well but there is a lot of oil coming from the valve covers. I first tried just tightening down the bolts but it still leaks back on the passenger side close to the firewall. Ok so I got the rubber gaskets from Auto Zone. I just don't know how to do this. It looks like I have to take a lot of things off in order to get down to the valve covers, like the EFI. Anyone have suggestions or a step by step way to go about it? Also how difficult is this on a scale of 1-10? Thanks a lot!!
the reason the leak won't stop by just tightening the valve cover bolts is that the gaskets have a metal collar in the bolt holes. This is a time consuming job, it's not a very difficult job to do but it will take a while. Pay attention to how things come apart and putting it back together will be a breeze.

 
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1987BroncoProject

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Wow!! Thanks guys. I appreciate the advice. I am going to try to do it next weekend. That is a huge help Beast Runner. Much appreciated.

 

1987BroncoProject

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Well, I got the vacuum lines off, the throttle linkages off, the coolant lines off and some wires off. I took out the bolts on the plenum but it doesn't want to move. I took out the 2 at the front, 2 at the back, one of the right middle, and one on the bracket on the left side of engine. I just doesn't want to move and makes me think htere is more bolts? Or is it the gasket holding it down? Any help would be appreciated!!

Thank you

 

1987BroncoProject

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Sep 16, 2011
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I found it!! It's completely off now. You won't believe this but once I got the EFI plenum off, the back of the valve cover has a round hole in it. Stuffed in the hole was a greasy shop rag. No wonder the thing was smoking. Ok next weekend I will try to put it all back together. Many thanks for your help.

 

nelbur

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Oct 30, 2010
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That round hole is for the PCV valve. There should be a rubber collar in the hole to hold the PCV valve.

 

michael1989

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I was directed here from one of my posts and this was very helpful. Also I need to replace some broken vacuum lines, is it easier to do once the plenum is off?

 

bigguns76

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Feb 26, 2013
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I am new here , and just picked up a 85 bronco with a 351w in it and have to change the valve cover gaskets , due to oil on the driver side.

Whats the difference with the stock hight and the tall covers ? This should be an easy job due to it is a carb engine.

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Treg

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All good stuff guys. I just did mine in my 93 a month ago. It is time consuming but I agree it is a 5 on the 1-10 scale and that was the first time I did it. Like others said keep your bolts organized. I also took pictures of each area before I took something off so I could reference that when I put it back together. That really helped because manuals often look a little different if things have been changed in your engine. While you have everything off you might as well change some things if they are needed or at least take a look at them. I changed out the gasket in my headers and I also changed out plugs and wires because it was much easier when it was all open and well worth the small amount of money to do it.

 

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