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How Much does a Rocker Cover Gasket Replacement Cost?
The cylinder head of the engine contains some of the most important components that keep your engine running smoothly.
These components require oil to stay lubricated, and without the valve cover (also known as the rocker or tappet cover) this oil would spray everywhere, and also allow dirt and debris to interfere with these sensitive components.
To prevent this oil leaking out, the valve cover includes a rubber or cork gasket which is fitted to a specially designed channel within the cover.
Due to heat and constant exposure to oil, these gaskets can fail and allow oil to leak out of the engine.
Rocker Cover gasket replacement can cost between $200 and $800, depending on the location of the rocker cover and if the inlet manifold needs to be removed to allow access.
Rocker Cover Gasket Replacement
What is a Rocker Cover Gasket?
A rocker cover gasket is a rubber or cork gasket that is designed to provide a seal between the valvetrain components from the rest of the engine, as well as keep in the oil that is used to lubricate these components.
They also provide a seal to the spark plug tubes, to prevent oil contaminating the spark plugs and ignition components.
Symptoms of a failed Rocker Cover Gasket:
- Oil leak from the top of the engine
- Burning oil smell noticed while driving
- Oil found when replacing spark plugs
- Oil leaking onto the ground
How is a Rocker Cover Gasket replaced?
- The bonnet will be opened and the top of the engine inspected for leaks
- If required, the inlet manifold will be removed to allow access to the rocker cover gasket/s
- The ignition leads or coils will be removed and inspected for oil or damage
- The rocker cover will be removed and inspected for damage
- The gasket will be replaced and the engine cleaned down
- The vehicle will be road tested to ensure correct operation
Tips to Remember
- Depending on your vehicle, your engine may have valves that are recommended to have their clearances adjusted at certain intervals. These valves are located under the rocker cover gasket, so if you are having the gasket replaced due to a leak, it may be worth having these clearances inspected and adjusted to ensure correct operation.
- Some vehicles are designed with the intel manifold over the top of the rocker cover, especially many V6 engines, so removal may be required and new gaskets needed.
How important is replacing a leaking Rocker Cover Gasket?
Your engine relies on oil to survive. It provides cooling and lubricating properties, and an engine that is leaking oil can cause an increase in wear on sensitive components and can lead to expensive repairs further down the track.
Oil leaks can also lead to engine fires if the oil is leaking onto the hot exhaust, so it is best to have them rectified as soon as possible to prevent this from happening.