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Old 06-25-2002, 10:46 AM
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dpetryk dpetryk is offline
Electrons can do anything
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 1,071
Hydraulic Compensators (Valve lifter) questions.

I am working on a 5.6 liter V8 117 series engine. During the inspection of the valve train components, I found one of the hydraulic valve clearance compensators (AKA valve lifters) did not move like the others. It appeared to be frozen. All the others seemed to be spring loaded and the moved a bit.

So I took this one out and tried to unstick it. Which I did. I was able to pull it apart and clean it with solvent. It appeared that oil crud had caused the thing to sieze up and not slide as it should. There are no rubber parts in the thing, only a spring. It looked like the oil had sludged up or something and caused the plunger part to stop sliding.

I assume these things "compress" a little bit during the valve opening cycle and are designed to compensate for temperature changes and any extra clearance. If they are worn out they would probably compress too quickly due to oil leakage past the plunger. But if they are not worn out, just gummed up it would seem to me that cleaning them should bring them back to a usable condition.

My question is this; Can these things be cleaned if they are frozen and will they operate as they should after the cleaning process, or should they just be replaced?
I got too many cars!! Insurance eats me alive. Dave

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