How to Change the Valve Cover Gasket on a 1988 Chevrolet Corsica

If you notice that oil is leaking out of your valve cover on your 1988 Corsica, it is most likely time to change your valve cover gasket, which seals the top and bottom part of the valve covers. The job is relatively easy and will only take a few hours for the novice backyard mechanic. Doing your own car work will not only help you save some of your hard-earned cash, but it also enable you to be more familiar with how your car works.

Tools Used: Valve cover gasket set, Silicone, Socket wrench with adapters, Flat-head screwdriver

Change Valve Cover Gasket

Raise the hood on your 1988 Corsica. Make sure that the hood is securely in place and is not going to drop down on your head while you are working on it. If needed, prop it open just as an added safety precaution.

Remove the two valve cover bolts by using the socket wrench. The bolts are located on the top part of the valve cover and are easily recognizable when looking at the valve cover. Put the bolts in a place where you will be sure not to lose them and they will not get dirty.

Pry off the valve cover of your Corsica. It may simply come off by putting pressure on it with your hands, but you may need to use a flat-head screwdriver.

Use the flat-head screwdriver to pry the old valve cover gasket from the valve cover itself. Some parts of the gasket may be corroded, cracked or brittle, so that it only comes out in small pieces. Be sure to get all of the pieces of the old gasket out from the valve cover. Use a screwdriver to gently scrape the valve cover, if need be, to get the gasket out.

Use a light grade of sandpaper to sand down any gasket remnants or chunks left in the valve cover so you have a smooth surface for the new gasket.

Test the new gasket to make sure that it fits with the valve cover and that the top half of the valve cover will rest snugly with the bottom half.

Squeeze a bead of silicone into the groove where the new gasket will rest before inserting the new gasket into place. Insert the new valve cover gasket and cover it with a thin layer of silicone.

Screw the bolts for the valve cover back into place and wipe off any excess silicone that squeezes out between the seal.

Tips & Warnings

Make sure that your engine has cooled so that you will not be burned by the hot oil or engine parts.

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