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FX45 fx45 valve cover leaking

Discussion in 'FX (03-08) - Engine & Drivetrain' started by fxomz, Feb 7, 2018.

  1. fxomz

    fxomz Member

    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    London, Ontario
    Car:
    2003 fx45
    Name:
    Gerald
    Hi All,
    I have been the proud owner of a 2003 fx45 for about a year now. I am very happy with it, she now has 262,000 kms on her and runs like a new machine. I'm pretty confident she has another 100,000 to 150,000 in her.

    Recently she developed a leak in the right rear lower side valve cover. In researching this problem I see that leaking around the spark plug seals is also an issue with the covers, at this point though I have not removed any of the spark plug wires to see if they are leaking. So what I would like to know from people who have dealt with this is if it makes sense to just replace the outer cover gaskets or am I better off biting the bullet and replacing the covers themselves given the mileage on my vehicle. I don't have a problem spending the extra money if it saves me doing this job twice but of course it gets quite a bit more expensive if I have to buy new covers too.

    Thanks,
    Gerald.
     

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  2. 1bad_fx45

    1bad_fx45 Member

    Messages:
    148
    Likes Received:
    10
    Location:
    Houston
    Car:
    FX45
    although it's a pain to get the cover off, if you re-enforce the well seals with some good rtv sealant when you replaced the channel gaskets then it should last a long time.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    fxomz

    fxomz Member

    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    London, Ontario
    Car:
    2003 fx45
    Name:
    Gerald
    Thanks 1bad, I wondered if a fix like that was an option so I'll take a serious look at that. I'm hoping to do it myself so would like to wait a couple months since I don't have a heated shop, guessing it shouldn't cause any issues to wait till then other than the nasty burning oil smell.
     
  4. embdenb

    embdenb Member

    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
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    Location:
    Weeki Wachee
    Car:
    2005 FX35
    Bite the bullet and get two new valve covers online, along with an intake manifold gasket set. Disconnect battery. Remove intake manifold plumbing. Remove throttle position sensor connection, and remove the top plenum from the intake manifold. Tag bolts. This allows you to now remove the 8 or so bolts that hold the lower intake manifold plenum in place. Remove bolts. (Tag bolts). Disconnect harness from spark plug coils, along with connection to cam position sensor at rear of engine. Move harness out of the way and remove valve covers. (Tag bolts.) Apply a good quality RTV to the joint of engine block to cam cover. (I use high tack cement in the valve cover grooves to make sure the valve cover gaskets stay in the valve covers as they are installed.) Offer up new valve cover to engine, align spark plug wells to spark plug openings in valve cover and press valve covers onto head. Tighten in two stages, first lightly, then hand tighten with ½ inch socked handle and #10 mm socket.

    Take your time; make sure you know where all the connections go. On the driver’s side disconnect the water line, it makes things easier.

    Figure a full day on this job.


    Good luck
     
    porkandbeans and DatMan like this.
  5. DatMan

    DatMan Member

    Messages:
    654
    Likes Received:
    121
    Location:
    Ottawa, ON
    Car:
    2007 FX35 AWD
    Name:
    Dat
    +1... You can't buy the gaskets separately... And any other fix is really just a band-aid fix... The gaskets in the valve covers will usually last around 60-80K miles... Adding the RTV should help extend that life...
     
  6. chino97

    chino97 Member

    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    new haven ct
    Car:
    2003 FX45
    I had my 03 FX45 for 9 years now, right before it hit 200,000 miles my valve cover gasket began to leak. I bought the new gaskets and had a mechanic do the job (was being lazy) but when he removed the spark plug coil we realized the valve cover spark plug seals were bad also. I decided to just replace both of the valve covers with new ones. They were pricey ($500) for both from the local stealership (which I hate to give my business to) but my baby was already in the shop with everything removed, just wanted it fixed. I actually had to wait 3 days for the parts to arrive. Did not really mind spending the money since it is the first time I actually had to spend any significant amount of money on it to repair it besides having my wheel hubs replaced about 3 or 4 times. Can't really complain after 9 years and almost 145,000 miles of use with just general maintenance. Still love it!
     
    porkandbeans and DatMan like this.
  7. embdenb

    embdenb Member

    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Weeki Wachee
    Car:
    2005 FX35
    You can buy the valve cover gaskets separately. What you cannot buy are the spark plug tube gaskets separately.

    BTW if you need to buy new valve covers they can be purchased on line for about $160.00 each or less.
     
  8. DatMan

    DatMan Member

    Messages:
    654
    Likes Received:
    121
    Location:
    Ottawa, ON
    Car:
    2007 FX35 AWD
    Name:
    Dat
    All the guys that did that in the past have stopped... But then I disappeared for a while, so maybe some guys are doing it again... Do you have links for these guys?
     
  9. OP
    OP
    fxomz

    fxomz Member

    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    London, Ontario
    Car:
    2003 fx45
    Name:
    Gerald
    Thanks Embdenb for all the tips on R&Ring the covers. Between what you and Chino97 have said I'm gonna do the job right and get new covers. I like the fx too much not to.

    I'm wondering though are the $160 covers that are available online oem or aftermarket?
     
  10. embdenb

    embdenb Member

    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Weeki Wachee
    Car:
    2005 FX35
    The $160 each covers are for the FX35 and were sourced from rockauto.com ( note they also have valve covers for less) For the FX45 you should be able to get valve covers on line for about $200.00 each. Also try eBay
     
  11. OP
    OP
    fxomz

    fxomz Member

    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    London, Ontario
    Car:
    2003 fx45
    Name:
    Gerald
    Thanks I did find a set for around $200 each on eBay. I am getting information that I might not need to remove the intake on my engine to get the covers off, wondering if anybody can confirm that...could the 4.5 be different from the 3.5 that way?
     
  12. embdenb

    embdenb Member

    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Weeki Wachee
    Car:
    2005 FX35
    The intake on the 6 cylinder is way different that the V8. I am inclined to believe that you do not need the remove the intake to replace the valve covers. The valve covers back bolts are supposed to be a bitch. See if there are cutouts in the body to access these bolts from inside the cabin.
     
  13. OP
    OP
    fxomz

    fxomz Member

    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    London, Ontario
    Car:
    2003 fx45
    Name:
    Gerald
    Yes after taking a closer look at the covers and having it confirmed by a tech at Infiniti looks like I don't have to remove the intake...great news :). I will need to remove the throttle body to do the left side but it's the right side that's leaking so I can do it first and hopefully get rid of the burning oil smell.
    Your right about tight clearances, only about an inch of space between the lower back bolt and the side of the engine bay, on the right side at least . I can't even see the back of the left cover thanks to all the wiring and hoses. Anyway, new oem covers and gaskets are on there way so shouldn't be too long before I get to find out how much fun that will be. We're getting an early taste of spring here so maybe I'll be able to tackle it soon...or take it to my mechanic, I haven't really decided yet :/
     
    DatMan likes this.
  14. CBRworm

    CBRworm Member

    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    South Florida
    Car:
    2006 FX45
    If you haven't done this yet, there are holes in the brake master cylinder compartment that will give you access to the rear valve cover bolts using an extension, I don't remember if there is something similar on the battery side.
     
  15. OP
    OP
    fxomz

    fxomz Member

    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    London, Ontario
    Car:
    2003 fx45
    Name:
    Gerald
    ok thanks for the tip, covers and gaskets are here, as well as new plugs...still waiting for some warmer weather before I tackle this!
     
    DatMan likes this.
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