i think my valve cover is cracked but i cant tell if its a big deal or not the damage looks old ...is this just wear and tear or should i go look for another one? if so where can i get one? its off now because my tb broke .
Nothing special I can think of to clean it - any degreaser should be fine. Other than taking it some place for dye penetrant or radiographic inspection, the only way I know of being sure it isn't cracked is to put it back on the car and watch it for leaks. You could try hanging it with a piece of wire from a hook in the ceiling and tapping it with a screwdriver. It should ring like a bell; if it is cracked the ring will change depending on where you hit it. Sounds goofy, but it might give you some level of confidence.
My company does NonDestructive testing (Radiography, Dye Penetrant, etc). If you take the part to an NDT lab it should be about $75.00 an hour if you don't have to do a shop minimum. If you want to check yourself with Dye Penetrant it is pretty easy...You can usually get the supplies at a welding supply shop (about $4 to $8 a can) or send me a PM and I will give you some mail order sources. It just takes 1 aerosol can of each: the penetrant (oil based dye), a cleaner, and a developer (provides white contrast and helps bring penetrant out of crack).
The procedure is on the back of the cans, first clean part with cleaner and lint free rag, next apply penetrant and let it "dwell" on part for about 5 minutes, Next remove excess penetrant with lint free rag soaked in cleaner (so part appears clean with no penetrant haze), last fog on developer lightly (its a lot like foot odor spray). Should be ready to view pretty quick. The larger or deeper the crack the larger the indication is. PM me with any questions Good luck
There is some fluorescent leak detection stuff from a company call Spectronics. Pour some in your engine then inspect with a black light. Not sure I would want it in my 1.8T.
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