Valve Cover Removal & Installation For Gen. Iii Viper Engines

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Kevan

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Hey folks!
I wanted to get you all something, but with such varying tastes it was really difficult.

So, instead, I got you all a DIY article! :)

This one is VERY basic. It's more for those that are just getting into working in their engine bay as opposed to just rubbing it down with a diaper. :D

Many of the truck features cross-over into the coupe/convertible realm, so if you enjoy this one, you're welcome to check out the dozens of others that I've done:
SRT-10 How-To Database - .:SRTConnection:.
There's no charge and you don't even have to be a member!
(No offense, VCA. I'm referring to OTHER forums that require payment to view my articles)
Critiques are always welcome!

Because the forum only allows 25 pics per post, this will be done in back-to-back posts (1st is Removal; 2nd is Installation).
My apologies.

Sorry it's a week late, but I hope you enjoy it!

Thanks everyone for letting me hang out with you this past year.
I look forward to all the great events in 2009!!!
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

VALVE COVER REMOVAL & INSTALLATION FOR GEN. III VIPER ENGINES
(Coupe, Convertible, and Ram)



TIME: approx. 1 hour.
DIFFICULTY: 2
COST: Less than $1.
TOOLS

- 3/8" drive socket wrench
- 3" extension for 3/8" drive
- IN/lb. torque wrench
- 10mm socket
- 10mm deep well socket
- 6mm nut driver
- 8mm nut driver
- Plastic pry tool
- Shop rag
- Sharpie

SUPPLIES
- Masking tape
- Scrap cardboard box

VEHICLE PREP:
- Vehicle should be cool (ambient air temp).
- Vehicle should be in an enclosed space (the less dirt flying around, the better).


-REMOVAL-
This is what you'll be starting with:
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-OPTIONAL-
Use masking tape to protect the finish on the valve covers:
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Not required, but it's good insurance against bonks from wrenches/sockets.

You need to disconnect the CCV lines using your 8mm nut driver to loosen the hose clamps and remove their respective hoses.
Pass. Side:
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Driver's Side:
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Keep a shop rag handy as there might be some funk/gunk in the hoses that can drip onto your engine. It's nasty, smelly stuff.

This is the fun part: removing the spark plug wire guides.
These are plastic guides mounted onto the studs of some of the valve cover bolts that have a snap-lock clip on top.
Use a plastic pry tool to pop the top open:
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Open the clip to access the spark plug wire(s):
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Move the spark plug wire to the outside of the clip, then close the clip to give it added rigidity:
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Using your hands (NOT PLIERS!!!!), lift the wire guide off the stud:
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It will take a decent amount of finger strength. You want to lift 'straight' off the stud.

On the Pass. side, there are 6 wire guides (5 lower; 1 upper).
On the Driver's side, there are 5 wire guides (4 lower; 1 upper).
They all need to come off.

-OPTIONAL-
If you don't want to pull the wires out of the guides, you can just pull the spark plug boots. But you'll still have to remove all the guides.
DO NOT USE THE WIRES AS A PULL-TOOL FOR REMOVING THE GUIDES!
YOU WILL BREAK THE GUIDES!!!

Be careful with the ones closest to the firewall. They are difficult to remove because of the limited space available back there.

Now onto the bolts. These are pretty easy.
For removal, you can take them off in any order you desire.
You can use the regular 10mm socket on those that don't have the wire guide stud, but I just used the 10mm deep socket for all of them.
I did the upper bolts first:
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Then the lower bolts:
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I kept a hand on the valve cover itself in case it slipped.
The tricky bolts are both on the Pass. side:
- Front lower corner holds the dip stick bracket (partially seen in the pic above).
- Rear lower corner holds a wire bundle bracket.

As I was removing each bolt, I put them into a 'bolt guide' I made from a scrap cardboard box:
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It's a little jacked up, but....it kept things in order.

Once the bolts are out, the valve cover can be lifted off.
You may need to give it a little 'fist bump' to break the seal of the rubber gasket.

Lift the valve cover off at the same angle as the cylinder heads.
Be careful not to bump or bonk it into surrounding objects (A/C condenser, brake master cylinder, etc.).

Keep the shop rag handy as there might be a little oil pooled in the bottom cavities of the cylinder head tops. It might drip out onto your engine block.
Use the shop rag to wipe way any drips.

Here is one of the valve covers removed:
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With both covers removed, your engine will look like this:
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IMPORTANT: If you're going to have the valve covers off for more than few minutes, COVER THE VALVE TRAIN!!! SaranWrap works well and is cheap/easy to find.

Set the valve cover aside and do a close inspection of your valve train:
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Look for anything metallic or out of the ordinary. You want that area as clean as possible.

Let's go back to the valve cover and inspect it.
You'll notice the black rubber gasket on the valve cover:
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Check that it's still in one piece, has no divots, dents or cracks.
If there's even the slightest mark, replace it. It's not worth chancing.

Inside the valve cover you'll see a baffle bolted to the top.
The baffle can be removed using an 8mm nut driver to take out the (7) mounting bolts:
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Once the bolts are out, lift the baffle cover straight out of the valve cover:
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It's a tight fit going in and coming out.

BTW- If you're reading this on any site other than the VCA forum, it means that some ****** stole it from their site. Not only is that uncool, but it's also highly illegal. You know how many wickedly awesome attorneys own Vipers? It's a terrifyingly large number.

Underneath the baffle is a type of foam filter:
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Inspect the baffle and foam filter for any metal or chunks of nastyness.
Remove as needed.
I'm not sure if that filter can be cleaned and re-used. I will check on that and post more info.



©2008-2009 Kevan J. Geier
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


===CONTINUED BELOW===
 

Kevan

Enthusiast
Joined
Dec 11, 2006
Posts
2,556
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Location
New Albany, OH
Re: Belated Holiday Present for VCA Members

VALVE COVER REMOVAL & INSTALLATION FOR GEN. III VIPER ENGINES
(Coupe, Convertible, and Ram)

===CONTINUED FROM ABOVE===

-INSTALLATION-

Installation is pretty much the reverse of removal, with a few slight changes.

Check that the foam is seated in the valve cover properly, and re-attach the baffle with the 8mm nutdriver on the (7) screws.
There is no torque setting for these, but BE CAREFUL! They are threading into aluminum and can easily strip out that aluminum. Hand-tight is good.

Make sure the gasket is seated properly all the way around the valve cover.

Place the valve cover back onto the cylinder head and use a couple of the mounting bolts to hold it in place.
Hand-thread as many bolts as you can:
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This prevents cross-threading or stripping of threads.
Make sure you put the ones with the wire guide stud back in their original locations!

Remember that the Pass. side has the dipstick tube bracket (front lower corner):
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.....and the wire loom bracket (rear lower corner):
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Both of those need to be re-attached as you're installing the bolts.

BTW- If you're reading this on any site other than the VCA forum, it means that some ****** stole it from their site. Not only is that uncool, but it's also highly illegal. You know how many wickedly awesome attorneys own Vipers? It's a terrifyingly large number.

For installation, the bolts need to be tightened and torqued in a specific pattern.
I'll try to use ASCII to best outline the pattern:

FRONT--TOP
10--6--2--3--7--12
11--9--5--1--4--8--13
FRONT--BOTTOM


Torque them all to 95 INCH/lbs. (11 N-m)
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These bolts see a lot of vibration, so go back and double-check all of them.

Wire guides can now be pushed onto the bolts with the studs.

Since I had all the wires out and all the guides open, I routed my wires nice and clean. I started at the front, and maintained the wires specific location in the guide all the way to the rear:
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Not required, but it does clean it up a little.

If you had masking tape on there to protect the finish, you can remove it now.

Re-attach the lines for the CCV, on both the Pass. side....
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....and the Driver's side:
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You're all back together and ready to rock!
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ENJOY!


©2008-2009 Kevan J. Geier
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
 
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