Valve seals - Replacement tools and tips

MTBSully

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Looking like my motor is needing valve seals. Puff of smoke on startup and under high vacuum deceleration. I was told these aviator heads were rebuilt but never verified valve seals, so here we are. Motor is brand new and has zero blow by and runs perfect, so I'm leaning towards these seals being bad (maybe they are original from a 200k mile aviator who knows lol) as opposed to a ring problem or something else.

So anyways, i've got the valve seals from my felpro gasket kit, which I have read are the best. Now i need to get the right tool for the job. Seems the tool for the 2V and 4V is the same to compress the valve springs? Anyone who has done this job recommend a specific brand? I know its gonna be cramped and tedious in there so anything i can do to make the job easier would be helpful.

Im already planning to use my small magnets, flathead scredrivers and pick up a set of magnetized screw drivers to help with the keepers.

Any other tips? Thanks!
 

03' White Snake

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Never done it in the car. I did mine on a fold up table in the kitchen a few years ago.

You will need either one of these tools.... Make sure it is for a 4V as they are different for 2V.



In the car will be a lot of fun. I assume you are going to need to pressurize the cylinder to keep the valves in place. Going to need a modified compression checker to thread into the spark plug hole and pressurize.

Pull the timing cover, VC's. Turn the motor over by hand, with the followers on the base circle of the cams, pop the follower off with a large flat screw driver. Then you can turn over the motor and the pistons will not hit the valves.

Next, you will pressurize the cylinder, use either tool above to remove the keepers and springs. Then you can pull the valve seals out with needle nose pliers. Lube up the new ones and push them back in. Then turn the motor over by hand and pop the followers back into place 1 by 1.

Then install timing cover, VC's etc.
 
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MTBSully

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Never done it in the car. I did mine on a fold up table in the kitchen a few years ago.

You will need either one of these tools.... Make sure it is for a 4V as they are different for 2V.



In the car will be a lot of fun. I assume you are going to need to pressurize the cylinder to keep the valves in place. Going to need a modified compression checker to thread into the spark plug hole and pressurize.

Pull the timing cover, VC's. Turn the motor over by hand, with the followers on the base circle of the cams, pop the follower off with a large flat screw driver. Then you can turn over the motor and the pistons will not hit the valves.

Next, you will pressurize the cylinder, use either tool above to remove the keepers and springs. Then you can pull the valve seals out with needle nose pliers. Lube up the new ones and push them back in. Then turn the motor over by hand and pop the followers back into place 1 by 1.

Then install timing cover, VC's etc.
I agree with all the above except pulling the timing cover. No need to do that. Ive got a leakdown compression tester so pressurizing the cylinder shouldn't be a problem.

Not going to be fun doing it in the car, but I know its do-able so im going to give it a shot.
 

03' White Snake

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I agree with all the above except pulling the timing cover. No need to do that. Ive got a leakdown compression tester so pressurizing the cylinder shouldn't be a problem.

Not going to be fun doing it in the car, but I know its do-able so im going to give it a shot.
Your right on the timing cover. I was thinking in my head degreeing the cams.
 

01yellercobra

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In all honesty, if you have the means you should pull the engine. I've only done springs in the car once and it was a 2V. After messing with one cylinder for an hour we said screw it and pulled the engine and set it on jack stands. Took us an hour to do the rest and put the intake back on. If you've ever dealt with a Bullitt intake you'll understand why we put it together outside of the car.

Someone had issues with new seals leaking and I can't remember if they were Fel-Pros or not. I'd do some quick searching to make sure. It would suck to swap them all and then have the same issue.
 

P49Y-CY

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In all honesty, if you have the means you should pull the engine. I've only done springs in the car once and it was a 2V. After messing with one cylinder for an hour we said screw it and pulled the engine and set it on jack stands. Took us an hour to do the rest and put the intake back on. If you've ever dealt with a Bullitt intake you'll understand why we put it together outside of the car.

Someone had issues with new seals leaking and I can't remember if they were Fel-Pros or not. I'd do some quick searching to make sure. It would suck to swap them all and then have the same issue.

i agree bob. yes it might sound crazy to pull the engine just to replace certain items like this but the size of the 4v heads and their configuration in this chassis makes a nightmare out of working over the fender. i too would def pull the motor, but i'm not a pro mechanic.

op my very low mileage coupe developed this problem early on from sitting so i replaced them a couple of years ago and it fixed the problem nicely. but, even with the heads on a bench i had too much trouble replacing them with the cams in place, so i removed the cams.

as mentioned, there are separate tools for the intake and exhaust followers on a 4v. and if the cams are out, this is a very handy tool to remove the keepers

euroexport Original Valve Spring Compressor Tool for Ford Modular 4.6L 5.4L 4 Valve Cobra GT Shelby GT500 FR500 Navigator https://a.co/d/bEGprqM


good luck! i think you'll be fine with the felpro seals.
 
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blwn89gt

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Before I cooked 3 pistons on my car I had bought that valve spring tool to do it with the motor in the car. My dad and I were going to do it and I wound up torching 3 pistons before I could even tackle it, but I do remember deciding to just take the motor out to do It.


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Bullitt1448

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You stand a lot better chance of not scraping the paint on the fenders if you drop the engine out. It’s an easier job than most people think
 

5.0 Hatch

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I'm with everyone else. Pull the engine. I replaced my engine just working a few hours each night after work over a few weeks span. It's really not that bad of a job, even with zero help.
 

JaCobro

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Book Labor time for all valve seals is roughly 7 hours. That’s after the valve covers are removed. Book time for valve cover gaskets is also roughy 7 hours. Book procedure for reming the LH valve cover is to remove the brake booster. With the correct tools and some patience and a little finesse this can be done in the car. Without needing to pressurize the cylinders.
 

MTBSully

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Update: decided to just pull the engine since i'm doing coilovers and thermostat change anyways and thats 2 steps off the list lol.

Did a compression test as well, 210PSI across the board. So even more evidence that this is likely not a ring issue.

I ordered the following valve spring tool. Description says 2V and 4V but box says 2V. Anyone used this one before or do i need a different one?

 

01yellercobra

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That's the style we used on my buddies car. It worked decently enough. But that was a 2V. I'm not sure how it'll work on a 4V.
 

P49Y-CY

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blwn89gt

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The freedom racing one was the one my dad had me get, I wound up giving it away a few months back and if I still had the damn thing I would have given it to you.


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MTBSully

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