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How to Replace Valve Cover Gasket in a Ford F-Series

by Contributor

Whether you are the original owner or have recently purchased your 1987-1988 F-Series, if you are experiencing an oil leak or have smoke coming from it, then it is time to replace the valve cover gasket. This problem usually occurs when the 1987-1988 F-Series has been driven between 100,000 and 120,000 miles. Replacing the valve cover gasket can be accomplished by investing 2 to 3 hours of maintenance.

Step 1

Visit a local automotive parts store to purchase your supplies and tools. It is not necessary to purchase parts that are specific to Ford. Gather your supplies and tools so that they are available and at hand prior to starting the maintenance. Allow the car engine to cool. Lift the hood and disconnect the negative battery cable for safety purposes.

Step 2

Disconnect all hoses. This includes the intake hoses, the fuel pressure regulator hoses and the PCV Line hoses. Using the 10 mm socket, remove the bolts that hold the support bracket. Release the clamps attached to the compressor outlet and throttle body and remove the inter cooler out of the bottom hose. Remove the throttle body hose. Using a screwdriver, remove the throttle cap off the throttle body linkage.

Step 3

Disconnect the two electrical connectors to the IAC and the TPS from the throttle body. Using the screwdriver, unscrew the EGR tube from the upper intake. Using a socket and a 1/4 inch drive ratchet disconnect the dipstick tube bracket, by removing it from the bracket mounted to the backside of the upper intake.

Step 4

Separate the upper and the lower intake by removing the bolts that are attached. Lift off the upper intake and the throttle body. Remove the breather from valve cover back. Unscrew the distributor cap bolts. Move the cap and wires out of your way, allowing access to the valve cover.

Step 5

Using a screwdriver, unscrew and remove the valve cover bolts. Using a little force, remove the valve cover. Remove the old gasket and all remnants that may be left behind. Using automotive engine cleaner and a cloth clean the gasket seating area.

Step 6

Place the new gasket into place and replace the valve cover. Replace and tighten the bolts in sequential order, starting in the middle and working from side to side on the diagonal and run then down to where there is very slight resistance. Using a torque wrench, start in the middle again and follow the same pattern.

Reverse the steps used to remove the parts initially, putting everything back into its place.

Items you will need

  • Valve cover gasket
  • 10mm socket
  • Flat head screwdriver
  • 1/4-inch drive ratchet
  • Automotive engine cleaner
  • Torque wrench

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