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View Full Version : Cam Chain Tensioner Gasket - is it really worth doing?



BlazinB5
05-16-2012, 10:05 AM
I'm about to do the valve cover gasket on my car and it looks like the biggest pain in the ass of the job is cam chain tensioner gasket. From what I can tell, the cam chain tensioner gasket wouldn't even lead to an oil leak outside of the motor - or in other words, you'd never know it was leaking - plus i don't have the cam tool.

So is it REALLY necessary to do the cam chain tensioner gasket? help would definitely be appreciated.

034Motorsport
05-16-2012, 10:10 AM
I'm about to do the valve cover gasket on my car and it looks like the biggest pain in the ass of the job is cam chain tensioner gasket. From what I can tell, the cam chain tensioner gasket wouldn't even lead to an oil leak outside of the motor - or in other words, you'd never know it was leaking - plus i don't have the cam tool.

So is it REALLY necessary to do the cam chain tensioner gasket?

Most definitely worth it. It is one of the most common places to leak. The proper way is to grab a CCT tool, they are cheap and available online ($12 or something).

Otherwise, if you are careful, you can pry it up, spray it down with brake cleaner and pop the half moon out, then slip them in and button it up.

Your breather system will generally fault to the weakest link; ie, if you replace your valve cover gasket and it seals up nicely now, it is likely your CCT would then begin to leak. Do it once, do it right. If it ends up leaking in the future, you will have to redo everything.

BlazinB5
05-16-2012, 10:20 AM
Most definitely worth it. It is one of the most common places to leak. The proper way is to grab a CCT tool, they are cheap and available online ($12 or something).

Otherwise, if you are careful, you can pry it up, spray it down with brake cleaner and pop the half moon out, then slip them in and button it up.

Your breather system will generally fault to the weakest link; ie, if you replace your valve cover gasket and it seals up nicely now, it is likely your CCT would then begin to leak. Do it once, do it right. If it ends up leaking in the future, you will have to redo everything.
hmm, but the oil leak is inside of the motor, isn't it? my mechanic is saying that if the cam chain tensioner gasket starts leaking - then it simply leaks inside of the motor - making it seem like there's no down side to cam chain leaking.

any thoughts on that?

walky_talky20
05-16-2012, 10:23 AM
Your mechanic is incorrect. After 100k miles or so, it can be dumping oil pretty good out the back, right through the little half-moon shaped plug. That plug literally shrinks over time. Makes a big mess back there. The main offender is not so much the metal gasket, it is that plug.

BlazinB5
05-16-2012, 10:30 AM
Your mechanic is incorrect. After 100k miles or so, it can be dumping oil pretty good out the back, right through the little half-moon shaped plug. That plug literally shrinks over time. Makes a big mess back there. The main offender is not so much the metal gasket, it is that plug.

ohh, so it's the half-moon that mostly leads to the oil leak? but isn't that half-moon on the inside of the motor too? i'm a little confused, because i thought the only way oil could escape was through the circular cam plugs in the back? [confused]

Avant Nate
05-16-2012, 10:43 AM
The half moon is exposed to the air. I don't know where your mechanic got the idea that it doesn't. Reach to the back of the valve cover, and feel into the little hole in the back, thats the half moon.

walky_talky20
05-16-2012, 10:43 AM
You can directly see the half moon if you look at the back of the motor. This one is white:

http://i1003.photobucket.com/albums/af157/joehirth/Cupra%20Project%20Thread/100_1707.jpg

There are actually 2 "half moon" seals on the back, the other is integrated into the valve cover gasket, like so:

http://i1003.photobucket.com/albums/af157/joehirth/Cupra%20Project%20Thread/100_1706.jpg

The "half moon" areas are a result of the line bore operation during cylinder head manufacturing. After that is done, their only purpose is to create leaks. Cool, eh?

BlazinB5
05-16-2012, 11:07 AM
ohhhh, so my mechanic didn't entirely know what he was talking about. so to even get to that half-moon seal, you need to pull the cam chain tensioner out - i see.. i guess now all i need to do is find a cam chain tensioner tool now.

sweet, thanks for all the help guys [up].

xdewaynex
05-16-2012, 12:00 PM
If you dont have the CCT tool, you can compress it with a giant C-clamp, just be careful with it. I changed mine with one.

00SantorinS4
05-16-2012, 12:05 PM
It's a relatively simple job with a pick tool/cam tool and some small fingers for putting the new half moon in. The metal gasket which sits on the half moon/head surface is easy as it's slotted to fit once you feel it lock in, you're good. I've done this job on my 2.7t/my girls 2.8 and a buddies AWM 1.8t. Obviously it's easier on the 1.8t only having one head and a little more access back there. It gets easier with each job you do but I can't say I enjoy doing it at all LOL.

BlazinB5
05-16-2012, 01:01 PM
If you dont have the CCT tool, you can compress it with a giant C-clamp, just be careful with it. I changed mine with one.
sounds kinda risky. i think i do have a c-clamp somewhere, but i'd probably be fucked if something went wrong, lol!

It's a relatively simple job with a pick tool/cam tool and some small fingers for putting the new half moon in. The metal gasket which sits on the half moon/head surface is easy as it's slotted to fit once you feel it lock in, you're good. I've done this job on my 2.7t/my girls 2.8 and a buddies AWM 1.8t. Obviously it's easier on the 1.8t only having one head and a little more access back there. It gets easier with each job you do but I can't say I enjoy doing it at all LOL.

ya that's the problem right now. i need to figure out how i can take the cam tensioner out without fucking something up, cuz i'm not really sure if my mechanic has the cam tool.

guy022077
05-16-2012, 01:08 PM
you can get all of that stuff including the tool for under 20$ shipped. just do it.

walky_talky20
05-16-2012, 01:29 PM
Yeah, you don't take the tensioner out. You just compress it in place which allows enough slack to raise the tensioner body off the head. Rip out the 'old and busted' and install the 'new hotness'. Tighten all associated bolts. Done.