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Oil pan & valve cover gasket re & re. Plus thermostat replacement

36540 Views 36 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  jermil01
OK, so the plenum is off and all the bolts under it, on the valve cover, were loose. I took them off with my finger. THAT explains the burning oil smell. I took a closer look at the pan and I'm 99 % sure the oil leak is coming from the rear of the pan. I will use lock tite on all the bolts on re assembly. I will try and post some pics and so forth tonight.

What really sucks, besides having to replace all these gaskets, is I burned my thumb on a piece of molten steel (you know those little balls that spray off while you are welding) on thursday so I am basically doing this with one hand. I am starting with the valve covers and will start on the oil pan and give my thumb one mnore day to heal up, unlikely though, since it is swollen pretty good right now....oh well. I am just making some breakfast right now and will get back at er after I eat.
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I guess I will add a bit to this tonight.

I would first like to show what my dad did here. About 25 years ago, he got a pit put in the garage floor when he got the concrete poured.

Here is my compressor

the oil and coolant is being drained now

This is what the rear of the oil pan looks like, pretty yucky

I will now start removing a lot of what you see here to allow me to remove the valve covers.

here you can see I've removed the upper rad hose and the air intake hoses.

I will add more tomorrow, right now I just want to drink beer:beer :thumbup
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here is a link to the pics of what I have done thus far with a short description of what I did. I will be more descriptive and post the pics later.
looks like i have to pull the intake to get at the pcv valve, i was thinking of doing the valve covers at the same time... or at least have the gaskets at the ready in the event they need a changing. thanks for the write up. are you doing the insane oil pump change or just the oil pan gasket, one pc or 4pcs? the shot of the pan looks a bit like mine, except yours is blue.
No you don't have to pull the intake to get at the pcv valve, it is accessable.

The oil pump and motor for that matter only have about 25,000-30, 000 kilometers on it. I was planning on removing the pan to make a better inspection of everything, but I wasn't able to remove it last night. I will try again this morning, after my coffee. I have no issues on the bottom end so if I can't remove it, I will just leave it. With the motor jacked up I have enough room to clean up the mating gasket surfaces.
Lookin' good Waltman

You got a lot of work done yesterday. Looks like that enamel reducer cleans things very well. I'm always trying acetone on stuff and quick start alcohol spray, but neither works as good as what you're using.

You going cork on the valve covers again ?

I like that pit !
Of course you are kidding.
I am not only using the reuseable gaskets but I am going to add silicone, and loctite for the bolts to be sure.
Just a note, I used steel wool with the reducer to get the backed on stuff off but it took little effort.

The pit really does rule.
go with felpro rubber gaskets...looking good though

PermaDryPlus silicones for me :toothless

Never have to do it again !

Yeah I was jokin' Waltman

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go with felpro rubber gaskets...looking good though


When we did mine we went with the blue Fel-Pros and so far everything has been good.

Although when I had the motor completly resealed the guy used regular cork Fel-Pros. No problems yet.:brownbag
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When we did mine we went with the blue Fel-Pros and so far everything has been good.

Although when I had the motor completly resealed the guy used regular cork Fel-Pros. No problems yet.:brownbag
Hope the [email protected]$turd gave you back your reuseable PermaDryPlus FelPros !

well it is done and all is well, i will post pics of what I did and concentrate mostly on the valve covers since there is already a good write up on the oil pan gasket re&re. I will summorize what I did regarding the pan, link to the other thread where i bitch about problems I had, and post a few pics about the pan gasket replacement....I think I will even link to the other thread as well, by TRUCKY18 since he covers the pan gasket replacement quite well

here I am prying upward on the throttle cable with the screw driver to remove it and I will next pry upwards at the throttle body and move the throttle cable out of the way.

using the screwdriver again I pull the cable towards myself to slide the cable off the clip. Then using a pair of slip joint plyers I will squeeze the plastic clip on the sides which will allow me to slide the cable through the bracket.

Before removing th belt, I will loosten the four 7/16" bolts securing the clutch fan.
next I will remove the belt by using a 15 mm wrench (my last belt tensioner needed a 5/8" wrench to remove the belt) Starting with the wrench at approximately horizontal, pull upwards and while holding the wrench with one hand use the other hand to remove the belt from one of the pulleys. Now allow the belt tensioner to come down. Watch you don't get your fingers caght between the wrench and one of the pulleys. Keep in mind, you may need something with more leverage for the belt tensioner. The spring is pretty strong in there.
After the belt is removed I remove the already loostened bolts to allow me to remove the fan and the pulley behind it.

I will now remove the fan shroud and the radiator. This step is not needed, but I prefer to have that extra room to work on dismatling the rest of the motor. I used a 5/16" wrench to remove these two bolts for the shroud and a 10 mm for the two rad bolts up top.

now I have room to work. I will actually be stepping on the bottom of the rad support and the drag link while I am removing the rest of the components

Next I removed the upper hose which supplies coolant to the throttle body and unplug the egr valve.

this is the bottom hose going to the throttle body. It is more accessable here rather than at the throttle body. i also unplugged the IAC which you can see in this shot. It is right below the throttle cable.

next I removed two vacuum lines coming off the throttle body, one you can see here and the other one is below. These vacuum lines are located right behind the IAC

here I removed all the vacuum lines from the centre of the plenum

Don't forget to remove this ground wire

this clearly demonstrates how much room I have. This is easier on your back.

here I am removing the vacuum lines and plugs from these vacuum (relays?) and removing the wires from the coil

Then I removed the egr pipe from the egr.

This is the part of removing the plenum which is a hastle. You need a torx bit and a 1/4" drive wrench to remove this, because it is such a tight fit.

This is where the torx bit and extansion goes

there was a groung wire secured to one of the studs at the rear of the plenum.

Also, don't forget to disconnect the PCV valve on the passenger side rear of the plenum

with the six bolts removed, I am able to lift and remove the plenum. Once I remove the coil which is secured by 2 bolts at the intake manifold and one bolt at the bracket. The coil is attached to those relay doohickys and come off as a unit. I can work on both valve covers.:thumbup
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At the center of the intake manifold, on the pas side you can see the other end of the egr pipe. Spray this with penetrating fluid as well and carefully remove it.

to make removal of the wires going to the injectors and all the sensors and such easier, I needed to disconnect the fuel lines using this tool to unlock the connection

my finger is pointing in the direction the tool has to go in order to unlock the connection and there is another, larger connection to the left of this one

After you have unplugged all the injectors, temp sensors, AC, oil sender, distributor and whatever else you can see, including this knock sensor at the rear pas side of the motor, you can carefully remove the wiring. I say carefully because the wiring travels underneath the fuel rails, you will see.

the wiring removed in this shot, I next unplug all the sparkplug wires and move them out of the way.

this is how I was able to incorperate the stock temp sensor along with a mechanical one. Not the best way to do it since it is out by about 20*. It will due for now though

after removingsix bolts per cover, I was able to remove the covers

I went and painted my valve covers and while they are drying I went back to the heads to remove the crappy cork gaskets. To prevent the cork from going into my motor, i covered up the rockers with an old Tshirt.

this is a shot of the heads and the intake cleaned off of all the old gaskets

I took the opportunity to make sure my header bolts were snug
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Looks good so far man.
thanks ken:thumbup
...........and the pan is still spotless today, so all is definately good
at first i was like why the hell is he removing all thsi shit for a pan gasket? Then i remembered you were doing valve covers as well. I am going to put a new water pump on mine. well because it isnt sealed up good and i got a lifetime warranty on it, and i aslo have the hi miller goodyear hose kit and i figure i got to drain the coolant anyways.
If I still had my big bumber mounted on my truck, I probably wouldn't have removed the rad and such. iI would have only removed the fan, but because my truck is lifted and you just can't stand on the factory bumper, I removed all that stuff.
Not even a hint of oil is coming out now. That makes all the BS worth it....mostly.
Now to the oil pan

you can't tell from this pic, but there just isn't enough room to drop the pan without raising the motor. Avoiding cork for the replacement gasket and using the one piece rubber gasket, will save you from another weekend of wrenching to do the same job prematurely.

First thing I did once under the truck, was remove the one bolt from the driver side and passenger side motor mounts respectively.

To raise my motor, after removing the two bolts that hold the motor down, I secured a come along to the rafter and the other end around the vibration dampener. You will note, the pull is at a slight angle and to prevent the come along from sliding towards the hood of my truck and damaging it, I secured a bessey clamp on the rafter to prevent this.

If you don't have a rafter to secure a comealong to, or a cherry picker, you can raise the motor until it hits the firewall by using a bottle jack or a floor jack, and then cut out some wooden blocks to fit between the motor mount and the cross member and then lower the motor onto these spacers. NEVER RELY ON A HYDRAULIC JACK, OR ANYTHING FOR THAT MATTER TO STAY PUT. SEALS DO AND WILL FAIL AND YOU DO NOT WANT THE MOTOR TO COME DOWN ON YOUR ARM WHILE IT IS STUFFED INSIDE THE OIL PAN

the motor is raised as high as it will go in this shot. Still a tight fit.

here, I am using several extensions and my air ratchet to remove the oil pan bolts

these two shots show the pan unbolted and resting on the cross member.

If you do not plan on actually removing the oil pan, at this point, you are good to go, I will now show the next steps for removing the oil pump and thus allowing you to insert the new oil pan gasket.

this is a shot of the oil pump on the right and you can just see where the pick up tibe is bolted to the pump on the right.

First I will remove the two bolts securing the pick up tube to the oil pump. You have to remove this first, because the pump and the tube will not come out as one unit, it has to be brocken apart. I first break them loose with a wrench...

...once the bolts are loosened with the wrench, I can remove the bolts by hand. I started with the bottom one first and finished off with the top one.

here I am unbolting the oil pump itself, starting with the rear bolt.

Once the two bolts are removed from the oil pump, let the pump drop down into the pan, like you did with the pick up tube. Then starting with the pick up tube, remove it, it will take some articulation but it will come out and then remove the oil pump the same way. They will fit through.

I ended up removing the driver side header in order to give me more room to remove the oil pan. If you still have the stock set up, you will have a cross over pipe connecting or rather welded to the passenger side exhaust pipe. This will be in the way. You have to drop the exhaust pipe to allow you the clearance to remove the pan.
The last time I did this I had the stock set up and ended up zip cutting the cross over pipe and simply rewelding it after the job was completed. I prefer this method simply because you avoid the risk of breaking any exhaust bolts which are notorious for breaking upon removal.

The clearance is sooo limited, just to gain that extra little bit of clearance, I removed a bolt from the cross member.

This is a shot of the driver side header unbolted and moved to the side.

these shots show just how tight it is. In order to get that extra bit of room in order to allow me to remove the pan, I had my dad with a vey large pry bar up top, prying the motor towards the rear at the driver side motor mount, where in this case it was a bit lower than the passenger side. So with my dad prying at this point it not only raised the motor a bit more, but it also pushed the motor and tranny back so that I just had enough room to remove the pan.

to be continued.
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This is a shot of the main bearings and such after the pan is removed. It all looks good. If you start with the rear main bearing cap and count towards the front, the third one shows the stud right in line with the motor mount, on the passenger side, which is where the screen/pick up tube is bolted to. You are basically doing all this re&re of the bolts for the pick up tube and the oil pump blind. It truely is a PITA.

the oil pan is finally out:chili: :chili: :chili: :chili:

Once the pan is removed, make sure there is no gasket material left behind on the block or the pan... or silicone or gasket glue, WHY, and once you remove any foreign matter remove the oil residue with a good solvent that is compatible with the new gasket.
So now that I've cleaned the mating surfaces, I have the new steel cored rubber gasket installed. They come with these nifty plastic clips which thread into the block, thus keeping the gasket in place. The plastic clips are also designed to allow the pan to slide over the clips and at about an inch below the block, locks the pan in place just below the block.

BUT, as you get close to the front of the block with the oil pan, stop short of those plastic clips, remove them, and let the gasket drop into the clean pan (I didn't do this and broke both front clips, lucky I had some more clips cicking around from the last time I did this)
Once the pan is through the tight squeeze and resting on the cross member, re-install the plastic clips.

If you did not remove the oil pan, what you have to do is move the gasket, starting from the front of the block between the block and the oil pan and past the main bearings and connecting rods, until you reach the rear of the block. Now, you have just picked up a bunch of oil along the way, so you have to be sure you remove all that oil residue before you install the plastic clips.

a view of the rear plastic retainers

Because I removed the pan, I have assembled my pump and new pick up tube and dropped it into the oil pan. I purchased a new pick up tube because it is recommended to replace it, when the old pick up tube has many many miles on it. I cheaped out when I installed this rebuilt motor but decided to do it now.

If you did not remove the pan, then you have to slide the pick up tube into the pan, followed by the oil pump. Once the two items are in there, you first have to bolt up the oil pump. DON'T FORGET THE GASKET But here is the tricky part, you have to install the distributor to oil pump drive shaft with the retaining clip towards the top (this prevents the shaft from being pulled out of the oil pump and falling into the pan when removing the distributor. This shaft is driven by the distributor, which in turn makes your oil pump work, so don't screw this up)

So anyways, now that you have that shaft in the oil pump (with the tapered part of the shaft facing upwards) carefully guide it up through an opening in the block, which is out of sight, and using the oil pump bolt holes as a guide, get that shaft into the distributor. Once it is in place, bolt up the oil pump, with the gasket and torque it down.

Now reach into the pan and pretty much using one hand, bolt the screen part of that pick up tube, to the stud on that main bearing, loosely . Then bolt the pick up tube to the oil pump, torque it down and then torque the nut on the stud. DON'T FORGET THE GASKET.
Now, because the first time I ever did this, I missed the distributor, put it aaaaaalllllll together to see ZERO oil pressure when I started up the motor. So this time, what I did once the pump and tube were bolted, I put a wrench on the vibration dampener bolt, slipped my head up so that I can clearly see the oil pump drive shaft and turned the motor over. I saw the shaft turning and knew I had installed it correctly.:chili: :chili: :chili: :chili: :chili:
Now you can raise the pan onto the clips and install all the bolts. Torque them to spec starting from the center and working your way out.

I don't think a caption is needed here. At this point you will feel the same.

now it is time to install the valve covers. I used the reuseable high performance valve cover gaskets and torqued the bolts to spec and rewired and installed everything in the reverse order of removal.

After reconnecting everything and installing a new oil filter and adding new oil, refilling the rad, I start up my motor and with my fingers crossed, I look for no oil leaks.

..........and all looks good:chili: :chili: :chili: :chili: :chili: :chili: :chili:

ahhh, my truck is running again

I just love the way my newly painted valve covers look.

I hope this is helpful to anybody out there who is going to attempt one or both of these gasket replacements. If i forgot anything let me know.......oh yeah, at some point I replaced the thermostat:toothless
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Dude did you prime the oil pump before you started the motor? Or did you reuse the old oil pump? I would have replaced it cause they are cheap. Looks good. you got the dizzy driveshaft the second time. that rocks that took me like 4 hours the first time i did it. i felt like a virgin hahahahaha
Nope, I didn't prime it, it is the one I bought for the motor around 30,000 km ago and I didn't prime it then. It only takes an extra second or two to build up pressure. Plus I want to minimize oil contamination of the gasket and the mating surfaces.

By the time I had the shaft in and the pump on and the pick up tube, I felt like my arms, especially my right one, was going to fall off.
Looks like a great job. You are really good explaining the details.
Thanks, I'm glad to hear that.

Don't forget the gasket between the pickup tube and the oil pump, either.

Good write-up. I didn't have any trouble with the clips, though, I thought they were really useful.
I fixed the gasket omition for you. It was there before, then I did some editing and forget to include it again, and thanks
Ken, I just realized you meant prime the pump afterwards, right? When it was all assembled, by using the drill. I don't have that drill attachment handy so, the couple of seconds of no pressure was still acceptable to me.

what a job Waltman !

That's a lot of work you got done there and some great pics and angles. Never knew there was so much room with the pan off.

I think I'd still be tempted to pull the motor and re-seal everything rather than attempt what you just did.

Hope my rear main seal never quits on me:shocked

Take the weekend off Waltman !!!!:thumbup

You know, that is what I thought at first, but then I discussed it with my dad and when you get right down to it, it ends up being six of one and half a dozen of the other words, if you were just replacing the pan gasket, all that work I did up top would be unneccasary, accept for removing the fan.
But if you decide to remove the whole motor, you would have to remove the rad and all associated components and then you have to remove the plenum in order to remove the wiring and get better clearance to remove the motor. You could probably get away with just reaching under the plenum and disconnecting everything, but I would remove the plenum in order to simplify things over all and make removal of the motor that much easier. Then you have to remove the hood and then unbolt the tranny from the that i am typing this, I think it is safe to say, I would simply raise the motor rather than remove the motor to replace the pan gasket.
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