Repair a Weeping K-Bike Valve Cover

Seems I've got a leak in the lower rear corner of my valve cover. It's enough to mist oil my boots when I'm on a ride. --
1) Is this a common problem? Seems by it's location it might be.
2) Anyone have thoughts on a solution?

Yes! First, get your dealer to order up a fresh set of the rubber washers which sit under the valve cover bolts. The old ones dry out and compress over time. Also get a new rubber gasket (there are two of them, actually, as you will see when you remove the valve cover: a large one which seals the perimeter of the cover and a smaller one which seals the opening where the spark plugs fit).

Remove the valve cover and replace all the rubber washers. Clean the cylinder head mating surface COMPLETELY! A small drop of oil on the mating surface WILL allow oil to seep. It helps if you use a paper towel or whatever to soak up some of the oil which seems to sit in the cylinder head right at the mating surface.

Re-install the cylinder head and torque to about 5 ft-lb - if you feel the need to actually torque them - I just tighten them up until they're snug.

Note: If you examine these bolts, you'll see that they have a shoulder on them, to prevent you from crushing the valve cover by over-tightening. Tighter is NOT better!

That should solve the problem. As an Added Bonus(tm) you can put a dab of an ACID-FREE (if it smells like vinegar, it has acetic acid in it: don't use it!) RTV on the seams where the front cover mates to the cylinder head. BMW Drei Bond/Yamabond4/Three Bond (3 names for the same stuff) is a good choice.


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Last Update: 10 June 2007