Question about 1997 Geo Tracker 2 Door

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Head Gasket?? Valve cover Gasket???

Wanted to know the difference between head gasket and valve cover gasket? And which one would need to be replaced if there is a small oil leak..? If it helps, the vehicle runs great a new clutch was just installed but there seems to be a good amount of oil underneath vehicle.. ThanX for the help!!

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Most likely it is the valve cover gasket. it covers the valve train where there is alot of oil to lube the top of the motor. if the head gasket was leaking it may have more signs of running poorly. also having coolant leaks also. so i will have to say valve cover gasket. now usally you may have a oil burning smell with it depending on the area of the lek but not always.

the valve cover can easily be seen when the hood is open. it is right on the top and where it meets the clyinder head is where the gasket is and the leak can be seen.

if you have more question please ask.

Posted on Nov 12, 2009

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The valve cover, requiring the removal of 4 to eight bolts, easy enough for the novice to remove and replace.
is the uppermost piece of the engine under all the hose's and wire's that run a muck. the head gasket on the other hand requires the removal of all that can be seen as you peer under the hood.if it is just an oil leak it should not require a head gasket .
my suggestion would be to use an engine degreaser
such as gunk or Castor oil brand follow there instructions.and then drive the vehicle 20 minutes or so and look for fresh oil to determine exactly where the leak is coming from

Posted on Nov 12, 2009

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The head gasket goes under the head .the valve cover gasket goes between the head and valve cover and will leak oil all around the top of the engine if the valve cover bolts have loosend up .or the gasket is warn

Posted on Nov 12, 2009

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The valve cover gasket between the valve cover and the engine head is the problem. The head gasket is between the engine head and the block, any leaks from that would be internal

Posted on Nov 12, 2009

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BMW 750Li Valve Cover Leaks Gasket Seal Replacement.

Note: Remove The center engine cover and Looking at your Plastic valve covers pop off the right and left side Valve cover facial covers, now on the drivers side Valve cover left side rear move your fingers slowly where the valve cover sits on the head...Can you feel the gasket ..?? The Gasket is a Rubber seal TAKE NOTE: These plastic Valve Covers Warp...there are 4 spark plugs tubes between the covers and the heads and the covers sitting on these tubes help cause the Warping ..

Take Note: Looking at the valve covers Bolts"..2 center by vanos piston and the 2 bolts with half moon notch on the heads These Bolts have to return back to where they removed from because the stops on them are different sizes to keep from cracking valve cover and insure the lower side of the valve covers will seal tight against the heads.

Caution - tighten valve covers bolts in Multiple steps torque sequence

Up on replacement with new valve cover I set the new valve cover on head then from the top center of valve cover installed the new bolts and Lock seals just getting them started then the long front bolts then the 1 rear bolt that hides back at the cam sensors.
Now take one of the old top bolts with the half moon and get the bolt started center of lower side of the cover...began to tighten the bolts Keeping in mind the Spark Plug tubes are holding the valve cover up and will set and seal as you tighten bolts in sequence starting from the center then out toward the ends.. Began to install new lower Valve cover bolts, when the valve cover spark plug tubes are seats into valve cover enough to allow lower bolts to reach and grab the studs threading...Remember to Remove and replace the old half moon bolt you install on lower side of valve cover we use for valve cover with spark plug tube seating ..replace with new bolt and seal with shorter stop shank.

Take Note": This is not a fun job to do so I would Purchase new Valve Covers and New Spark Plug Tubes and when installation I used see through coat of lithium grease on the seals of the spark plug tubes and made sure there sitting completely in the head on reassembly. Also wiggle each spark plug tube when setting the new valve covers back on head to insure the tubes are aligning with new valve covers..

Disconnect Battery neg. terminal

Remove the Engine covers

Remove the Cabin Air Filters Covers

There is a metal Flex Lock on top of the inlet ducks use crow foot and release ducks from firewall.

Remove the rear center cross over 2 - 10 mm bolts left and right side

Remove the plastic locking seat 1 - 10 mm bolt from right passenger side Cabin air filter lock tab ...this is sitting over main wire harness box.

Remove the main wire harness box cover

Pull up on the main wire harness allowing you to move the wires to firewall

Remove the 2 torex bolts from center engine cover mounts, this will allow more travel for main wire harness to firewall use a bungee cord to hold out of way of valve cover ..

Remove the 2 cam sensor Male torxe screws and wiggle sensors our of cover

Remove 2 Screws holding plate on eccentric sensor remove the plate.

Stop--------------------------------Vanos Piston Removal-------------------

Mark the vanos piston and mount with marker or paint for reassembly 2 half's

Loosen 4 Allen bolts slowly there is pressure on piston

Hold down on piston when removing last Allen bolt then slowly lift then it will click releasing tension

There is a seal ring for Piston to mount seating I apply lithium grease reassembly

Remove the 4 toreax screws from Vanos piston mount and lift mount off valve cover up out of seal.


Remove the right / left engine air filters and 2 screws from the Ducking now remove Ducking.

Remove 2 Screws from the Antifreeze overfill bottle lift up to release from wheel well

Remove the large Vacuum line off Air pump right front of head going to Power Brake Booster Diaphragm .

Got to Left side back at power brake booster there is a cover 2 torex screws holding this cover keeping this vacuum line in channel support Remove.

Unlock this Vacuum line from power steering reservoir bottle and remove this vacuum line from car

Remove the Vacuum line from the Throttle body that travel to secondary air up over the power steering reservoir ..

Remove the 2 - 10 mm bolts holding the power steering Reservoir freeing the Bottle from mount.

Right side passenger unplug the coil packs and using flat edge unlock the harness and move harness over the engine

Loosen the ABS Pump

Remove 4 coil packs from cover there tight so take your time may need to move Abs Pump

Now Take your time....The essentric Sensor stick up out of Valve cover back at cam sensors.
Remove the Valve cover bolts Keep in mind you have the 10 mm bolt that is back at the cam sensor

All bolts Removed wiggle and lift and wiggle valve covers up off spark plug tubes


These Valve covers have to come up over the Esentric Sensor in rear of valve cover first and when reassembly has to go over first......

-----------------------------------------------------Take your time ---------

Remember of reassembly wipe the oil from spark plugs tube seats because this will cause misfire of engine ...

U can use light see through lithium grease on new spark plug tube seal for reassembly

The Left valve cover is the same TAKE NOTE:----------

On Removal of left valve cover there is 2 coolant hoses heater that will need to pushed under valve cover once free from spark plug tubes or you will have to disconnect the upper hose...but makes mess with coolant.

Remember the cover lifts up over the Rear Esentric Sensor mount first and goes back over first on Reassembly.

That is about it...Just take your time, force the valve cover off spark plug tubes, keep in mind of the 1 - 10 mm bolt back at cam sensor

I get my Covers From:

Posted on Jan 13, 2014

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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