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Pelican Technical Article:

Replacing Valve Cover Gasket

Mike Holloway


1 hour1 hr


$15 to $40




10mm socket wrench, 6-inch extension

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz R107 (1972-89)

Parts Required:

Valve cover gasket

Hot Tip:

Make sure the engine is cool and do both gaskets

Performance Gain:

Reduce oil leaks

Complementary Modification:

Adjust for valve lash, intake manifold inspection, valve cover inspection

In order for an engine to function it needs engine oil to lubricate reciprocating parts. This means that the engine covers need to have seals to prevent engine oil from leaking out. One of the most common jobs to perform is replacing the valve cover gasket. Mercedes-Benz uses a rubber seal to form the valve cover gasket. This seal can shrink as a result of the heat cycles that the engine generates as the car is used. This will allow engine oil that is thinner from the engine to seep past the seal and form a layer of oil coating the engine. In this tech article we will go over all the steps to replace the valve cover gasket.

The valve cover gasket is one of the most common places to have an oil leak on your R107. If you have an oil leak down the exhaust side or front of your engine, start at the top and replace the valve cover gasket. When the valve cover gasket leaks, it can create quite a mess and seem much worse than it is.

Engine oil can also leak from the breather covers and looks a lot like a valve cover leak. If you suspect the breather covers are leaking, remove the ignition coils and inspect the area around the breather covers for leaks.

The valve covers are easy to take off but it will require removing the air box and brackets. Once the air box is off it provides a great opportunity to inspect the intake manifold. Refer to our article on intake manifold inspection for air box removal as well as intake manifold inspection.

Before you do any work on your car it is important that you wear safety glasses, work gloves and dispose of all fluids in a safe manner. Coolant is poisonous and should be treated with great care. Animals and small children have been known to die from ingesting coolant. If you have to jack up your car, make sure to use jack stands and chock your wheels as well as applying the parking brake. Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If you're working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Never work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Using a 10mm socket, loosen and remove the 4 bolts that hold the cover in place.
Figure 1

Using a 10mm socket, loosen and remove the 4 bolts that hold the cover in place.

It is recommended that both gaskets be changed.
Figure 2

It is recommended that both gaskets be changed. The cover will lift off.

The gasket is easily removed.
Figure 3

The gasket is easily removed. The new gasket will fit in place. Installation is the reverse of removal.

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Comments and Suggestions:
John Comments: Thanks for the follow up.
April 29, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No problem. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
John Comments: Torque on tightening?
April 27, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don’t have that info.

I would grab a repair manual. It will have the procedure, special tools and torque specs.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. - Nick at Pelican Parts

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