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Old 01-29-2011, 02:33 PM   #1
boostin23
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Default Bad valve guide seal

Hey everyone

So about a year ago I bought some 04 wrx (2.0) heads for my swap. The guy I bought them from said everything was in good condition and ready to be assembled. He even offered to assemble them for me if I wanted. I told him no offence to him, but i dont know him or his capabilities. He reassured me that he worked at RalliSpec on the east coast and I said sure.

Well when it came time for the install, my machanic said all the clearances were off..... That should have been my first clue. So he adjusted them and installed my new hybrid motor. From day one ive been gettin smoke out my tail pipe and consumming oil. The smoke was only on decel so we figure its a bad valve guide seal.

I never PM'd the guy about the lie he told me because I didnt actually install the heads onto my new motor for a couple months after they got to my place (still waiting on a few more parts and the right time to have my car down before install). And i figure he would just say "well you've had them for months how do I know you didnt do something to them yada yada yada".

So here I am 13 months after the swap. Ive been giving my car oil a couple times a month just to keep it at a good level. Now im getting ready to replace the valve guide seals inside the bad head.

So my question is, what all do I need for this job?

Obviously Ill need
-new head gasket
-valve guide seals
-tgv gasket(s)
-exhaust manny gasket

What other gaskets or parts would I need? Anything else inside the head thats a "one time use" part?
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Old 01-29-2011, 05:02 PM   #2
flstffxe
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You can do them with out pulling the head, no need for a hg.

Set the cylinder you want to work on on the power stroke(valves closed).
- Remove spark plug
- Screw in a leak down/compression tester hose
- Use a leak down tester or compression tester hose to connect to an air compressor line.
- Run about 90psi line pressure, the air pressure holds the valve closed preventing it from dropping in the cylinder.
- Use a tool of your choice to compress the valve spring(off set boxed end wrenches work well) and a telescoping magnet to remove the valve locks.
- Remove and replace the valve seal
- Reassemble

This dramatically saves time and materials. Saves the most on vehicles that you have room to work on with out pulling the engine.
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Old 01-29-2011, 07:27 PM   #3
boostin23
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But I have to pull the engine anyways dont I?

Ive heard you can pull the heads off without take the motor out, but Ive heard its quite a bit trickier? Thoughts on that?
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Old 01-29-2011, 07:55 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boostin23 View Post
But I have to pull the engine anyways dont I?

Ive heard you can pull the heads off without take the motor out, but Ive heard its quite a bit trickier? Thoughts on that?
No, you can do it with the motor in the car and the heads on the motor, no need to pull anything except the valve covers, timing components, and cams. It will be a little tight in there, but if you want you can always unbolt the motor mounts, tranny mount, and pitch stop and jack up the motor a few inches to get the heads away from the frame rails.

You can pull the heads off without taking the motor out with the stock head bolts. If you switched to ARP head studs you can't anymore. You don't need to pull the heads off to change a valve seal though.
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Old 01-30-2011, 01:32 PM   #5
boostin23
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Ive got the stock head bolts. Whats the difference between the stock and ARP as to why it would make a difference.
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Old 01-30-2011, 04:59 PM   #6
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Stock are bolts, when you pull them out the head will basically just fall off.

ARP are studs, all you do is pull the nut off of the end, then you have to pull the head up over the studs. You need an additional 6-8" of clearance to pull the head off of the studs, which you don't have when the engine is in the car. I suppose you could back the studs out of the block though.
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Old 01-30-2011, 05:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flstffxe View Post
You can do them with out pulling the head, no need for a hg.

Set the cylinder you want to work on on the power stroke(valves closed).
- Remove spark plug
- Screw in a leak down/compression tester hose
- Use a leak down tester or compression tester hose to connect to an air compressor line.
- Run about 90psi line pressure, the air pressure holds the valve closed preventing it from dropping in the cylinder.
- Use a tool of your choice to compress the valve spring(off set boxed end wrenches work well) and a telescoping magnet to remove the valve locks.
- Remove and replace the valve seal
- Reassemble

This dramatically saves time and materials. Saves the most on vehicles that you have room to work on with out pulling the engine.
I would LOVE to see how you can compress the valve springs on the heads with the engine in place.
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Old 01-30-2011, 05:08 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by 2milehi View Post
I would LOVE to see how you can compress the valve springs on the heads with the engine in place.
There are tools to do it, or some people make their own. The general idea is that you have a lever with a fork on the end. It bolts to the cam cap threads, and as you pull up on the lever, the fork pushes down on the valve spring retainer. With the exhaust system and valve covers off there is a decent amount of room in there. If you unbolt the motor mounts, tranny mount, and pitch stop, and jack up the engine a bit you'll have even more room.
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Old 01-30-2011, 06:11 PM   #9
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Between leaving the heads on, or pulling it off (and leaving the motor in) it seems like it would be a harder job leaving the head on the car?
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Old 01-30-2011, 07:14 PM   #10
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^^ Never said you couldn't pull the engine. Just said you don't need to remove the head, which means if one wanted they could leave the intake and other various items on also.

As far as compressing a valve spring, it doesn't take as much as you might think and as "the suicidal eggroll" said there are tools out there to do it or you can make your own. My simple choice is a offset boxed end wrench, most of the time you can push them down enough by hand with the wrench to get the valve locks out. Other times you need to fab up a pivot point. Beats pulling a head and spending the extra time and funds for and on un-needed gaskets.

Not a subaru but it is a walk-through for this method.
http://www.lextreme.com/valve_seals.html

Valvemaster also makes a tool for removing the keepers in one quick motion.
http://www.toyotool.com/Video%20Page.htm
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Old 01-31-2011, 01:25 AM   #11
boostin23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flstffxe View Post
^^ Never said you couldn't pull the engine. Just said you don't need to remove the head, which means if one wanted they could leave the intake and other various items on also.

As far as compressing a valve spring, it doesn't take as much as you might think and as "the suicidal eggroll" said there are tools out there to do it or you can make your own. My simple choice is a offset boxed end wrench, most of the time you can push them down enough by hand with the wrench to get the valve locks out. Other times you need to fab up a pivot point. Beats pulling a head and spending the extra time and funds for and on un-needed gaskets.

Not a subaru but it is a walk-through for this method.
http://www.lextreme.com/valve_seals.html

Valvemaster also makes a tool for removing the keepers in one quick motion.
http://www.toyotool.com/Video%20Page.htm
The Valve Master tool is awesome

But im guessing there wouldnt be enough room in the engine bay to use that if you dont pull the motor?

Like egroll said, I could lift the motor/trans up a few inches to give more "wiggle room" but would that give me enough room to use the tool? Or if I want to use something like that, the motor is coming out?


Sorry for all the n00b questions haha. Ive never pulled a suby motor. Just want to get all options in to think about. Then all parts ordered depending on what way ill go about everything. So once im ready to replacement, ive got everything ready to go.
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Old 01-31-2011, 01:41 AM   #12
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I have rebuilt heads and I have been able to compress the spring/retainer with a slotted O2 sensor socket and put in the keeper, but to do that operation while the engine is bolt into the engine bay sounds damn near impossible (very difficult at least).

But if others have done it, more power to them.
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Old 02-01-2011, 01:04 AM   #13
boostin23
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Ya im almost sure ill be pulling the motor
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:49 PM   #14
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Ok so I dont think im going to pull the motor haha. Just jack it up and pull the valve cover off.

went to the local dealership and guy in the parts dept gave me this list of what he could think of that ill need:

(1) valve cover seal - 13270AA162
(2) spark plug gaskets - 13293AA051
(4) valve seal (exhst) - 13211AA110
(4) valve seal (intk) - 13207AA120

can you guys think of anything else ill need?
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Old 03-14-2011, 11:53 AM   #15
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gunna try and buy parts this week. Anyone else think ill need anything else i didnt list?
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Old 03-14-2011, 12:00 PM   #16
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You are only doing one side?

You will need assembly lube for putting those cams back into the car.
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Old 03-14-2011, 07:58 PM   #17
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Yea just one side, the drives side.
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:21 PM   #18
2Fast4U1DAY
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boostin23
Yea just one side, the drives side.
Why not both for peace of mind and not having to screw with all of this again in the future? Its not going to be that much more time consuming, or costly.
How many miles on the heads and their components (including seals and timing belt)?
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:46 PM   #19
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Do them both. Do the timing bits as well. No point in having to pull it all out again in a few months time.
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Old 03-15-2011, 12:34 AM   #20
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The timing belt has like 13k ish miles on it. New timing belt, tensioners, water pump ect ect when I did the swap Dec 09

I know its only the one side just from where the oil is leaking.
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Old 03-24-2011, 08:46 PM   #21
boostin23
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Here are some pics of the job done IN the car

Removed bat, wiper fluid tank, coil packs, spark plugs ect ect.
Removed valve cover


removed radiator/timing belt/covers


cams out and replacing the seals. using compressed air to keep pressure in the cylinder
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:01 AM   #22
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So how did you compressed the springs to get the stoppers out and after you replaced the seal, how did you put the stopper and compressed the springs?
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Old 08-06-2017, 02:54 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boostin23 View Post
Ok so I dont think im going to pull the motor haha. Just jack it up and pull the valve cover off.

went to the local dealership and guy in the parts dept gave me this list of what he could think of that ill need:

(1) valve cover seal - 13270AA162
(2) spark plug gaskets - 13293AA051
(4) valve seal (exhst) - 13211AA110
(4) valve seal (intk) - 13207AA120

can you guys think of anything else ill need?
Ok gotta ask. What is the spark plug gasket? I'm drawing a blank.
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Old 08-06-2017, 08:12 AM   #24
Charlie-III
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Ok gotta ask. What is the spark plug gasket? I'm drawing a blank.
The well through the valve cover where the spark plug goes.
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