How to Change the Valve Cover Gaskets on a 1988 Ford Mustang

The valve cover gaskets on a 1988 Ford Mustang keep the oil from escaping the top of the engine, known as the engine head. Over time, the gaskets may shrink and dry up on the outside, while staying soaked on the inside of the engine. This can cause cracks and eventually an oil leak. When this happens, you must replace the valve cover gaskets.

Tools Used: Socket wrench, Socket set, RTV sealant, New gaskets, Razor blade, Degreaser, Clean rags, Torque wrench

Change Valve Cover Gaskets

Pick which side of the engine you will work on first. Your Mustang has two banks of engine; you can start with the left or the right. Each bank has its own valve cover and gasket.

Remove the valve cover retaining nuts on the top of the engine that connect the valve cover to the head.

Pry the valve cover off the engine head.

Scrape off all the old gasket material with a razor blade. Make sure that you clean both mating surfaces for the engine head side and the valve cover side.

Spray the mating surfaces with engine degreaser, and wipe them down with a clean cloth.

Apply a bead of RTV sealant to the mating surfaces of the valve cover and the engine head.

Press the gasket onto the engine head.

Press the valve cover to the gasket and engine head.

Thread and tighten the valve cover nuts to 25 inch-pounds using a torque wrench.

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