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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, finally warmed up enough to get my hands dirty with the oil leak issues. Have the PCV replacement hoses/parts, VCGs, RTV, video instructions, etc. Hopefully this goes a little easier than the timing belt job! First time on this job too, so I'm sure I'll run into some snags.

So, I purchased some of that red RTV, because I saw it used in the Passat VCG video.

red: https://www.amazon.com/Permatex-81160-High-Temp-Silicone-Gasket/dp/B0002UEN1A

But, after some more reading, it sounds like the ultra black or ultra copper might have been a better choice. Opinions? Should I go exchange it?

black: https://www.amazon.com/Permatex-82180-Maximum-Resistance-Silicone/dp/B0002UEN1U

copper: https://www.amazon.com/Permatex-81878-Maximum-Temperature-Silicone/dp/B0002UEOPA

EDIT: Also saw discussion about torqueing and then re-torqueing after some cure hours later, with some of the RTV choices. Not sure what you'd recommend.
 

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I used black, but I am not sure it matters.

I also just double checked the torques before buttoning everything up. I didn't loosen and then retorque.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I used black, but I am not sure it matters.

I also just double checked the torques before buttoning everything up. I didn't loosen and then retorque.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
Thanks. I was leaning towards swapping for Ultra Black, since I used that on my oil pan too (with no leaks), and water pump. Went by the store and picked up the Ultra Black. Hopefully this will be a smooth project. Fingers crossed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So taking my time (excuse for going slow). I've got the airbox out and the spark plug wires out (of course, dripping in oil, like when I did my TB). The engine was pretty much coated in oil, from the Valve cover bolts and down. Being my anal self, I cleaned that area for like 45min. Looks like a new engine, in that one area. ;-) I'll upload before/after pics when I have time.

So, in the video, the guy pops off the timing belt cover to look for leaks. As some of you may recall, I just did my timing belt and I didn't see any oil leaks directly behind/around the cam pulleys. However, there is definitely oil at/around/below the bottom clip of the cover. Is that likely from migration of seepage from the VCGs (which have been seeping for years), rather than the cam gasket?

Regardless, I'm not doing any of the cam gaskets today (even though I have them from the timing belt kit). Sticking to the plan of cleaning the oil around/below the VCG bolts, opening, cleaning out old VCG, thoroughly cleaning mating surfaces, installing the new VCGs with Black Ultra RTV, and re-torqueing properly. Then I'm installing two new PCV hoses - the large primary one, and there's a short one called NEW ENGINE CRANKCASE BREATHER HOSE (https://www.ebay.com/itm/222050473992) ... PZ suggested I replace while in there. I might replace those two rear engine caps too, since I have them on hand.

EDIT: By the way, this is the video I'm following for the VCG install:

 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Well, of course I hit a snag. That last 10mm nut, on the upper rear passenger's side cover (closest to battery), is impossible to access with the hose coming in over the top. My swivel socket adapter won't work either (too long/bulky). I have a small tool that attaches to hex, that would work if I had an adapter from that to 3/8" socket mate. Might have to grip the socket with some rubber tipped pliers or something. Those nuts are not on very tight. Might have to stop and head to the store, which will chew up an hour or more. Typical speed bump, as expected.

EDIT: Got lucky, found a smaller profile 10mm socket, and came in from the battery side. Had to really jam it in there - the pipe had a little flex to it, but not too comfortable applying pressure to it. Should be fun getting it back on - definitely not going to be torqued "to spec". Anyway, the cover is loose, and not stuck, so on to removing ....
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
VW engineers should be forced to do at least a couple major repairs on the cars they design. Do they give any thought whatsoever to ease-of-maintenance? Still trying to get this cover off, as it's so conveniently jammed under hoses, etc. Should be real fun getting it back on, without botching the gasket/RTV placement.
 

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I'm guessing you're talking about the power steering (high pressure hose) running along the top of the valve cover. The hard pipe going to the back of the motor has a 10mm nut on the coolant flange hard pipe. If you take that nut off you move the pipe out of the way. Yeah it's taken more stuff apart, but it makes putting the valve cover back on so much easier.
I'll post a pic showing the nut I'm talking about.
 

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You can also take the fuel line of the fuel rail to help you out even more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You can also take the fuel line of the fuel rail to help you out even more.
Hey Andreas! Yes, if you can post pics of how to get those hoses out of the way, it would be very helpful to get the cover back on, and carefully, so as to not mess up the seating of the gasket/RTV.

Does that black/burnt oil on the cover look normal? Never opened this part of the car before, so no idea what looks normal.

EDIT: I can post more pics, closeups, if it isn't clear from those two. PW limits the size - that image is actually huge.
 

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The hard pipe for power steering gets attached to where the blue/circle is with a 10mm nut. It's a PITA but it make the other part of your job so much easier.

 

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Gotta jet out now, but I'll be back in a couple of hours.
You got my contact info anyways. ;)
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
In the FCP video, the guy only puts sealant on the bottom of the gasket, not the top/cover side. Is this the normal procedure? I asked Andreas, but not sure when he'll be able to respond.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
According to Andreas, RTV only on bottom is normal. I guess that makes it easier, especially getting the cover back on.

Spent a ridiculous amount of time cleaning the surfaces. My back is killing me so it'll be a multi-day project.
 

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You should use a very small amount of RTV, and ONLY in the sharp corners; as shown in the manuals.
The mating surfaces must be clean and dry, clean with solvent. The same applies to seals and cam plugs.
 

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Here are the points to add RTV sealer per the manual.
Don't use any more anywhere else on the valve cover gasket. When torqued down properly, the RTV sealant and gasket work exactly as they are supposed to. My DD and my wife's car are the proof to back that up.
Both of my V6's have ZERO oil leaks. My DD is going on 3 years now and my wife's car is a bit over a year now since the rebuild.

I'm going to assume your valve covers are NOT cracked, but check them for cracks around the holes for the spark plug wires.
I have seen on some of the cars I've worked on, the valve cover actually had a crack(s) running the length of the cover and when it gets tightened down, it wont put even pressure all around and leak no matter what you do.
DO NOT OVER-TIGHTEN. That will net an oil leak for sure.

 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
You should use a very small amount of RTV, and ONLY in the sharp corners; as shown in the manuals.
The mating surfaces must be clean and dry, clean with solvent. The same applies to seals and cam plugs.
Here are the points to add RTV sealer per the manual.
Don't use any more anywhere else on the valve cover gasket. When torqued down properly, the RTV sealant and gasket work exactly as they are supposed to. My DD and my wife's car are the proof to back that up.
Both of my V6's have ZERO oil leaks. My DD is going on 3 years now and my wife's car is a bit over a year now since the rebuild.

I'm going to assume your valve covers are NOT cracked, but check them for cracks around the holes for the spark plug wires.
I have seen on some of the cars I've worked on, the valve cover actually had a crack(s) running the length of the cover and when it gets tightened down, it wont put even pressure all around and leak no matter what you do.
DO NOT OVER-TIGHTEN. That will net an oil leak for sure.
Thanks guys! I'm glad I waited until tomorrow to RTV and install the first gasket, as I was going to follow the video's instructions to apply a thin bead of RTV along the entire length of the gasket. I'll be sure to only apply in your marked spots. (Andreas, that's one mighty clean engine!)

I thoroughly cleaned everywhere the gaskets touch metal - THOROUGHLY. First, with brake cleaner. And then, a last wipe of rubbing alcohol. So, I should be good there. When cleaning the cover side, I didn't see any sign whatsoever of cracking around the plug holes. But, I'll look once more in the morning. I still have the other side to do, so will inspect there too.

I'll look in the Bentley and Haynes tomorrow, but what torque do you suggest on the 10mm nuts?
 

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x2 on the torque. It "feels" lighter than you'd be comfortable tightening anything, but it works.
 
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