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Old 03-03-2020, 11:17 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North New Jersey
Posts: 431
123 valve adjustment - new cover gasket, or keep old?

Sorry if this is a silly question.

I had a valve adjustment done by a great indy about 6000 miles ago (about 3 years or so) and a new mercedes brand valve cover gasket was put on. never has leaked, all good.

I'm going to do a valve adjustment myself soon, and I'm wondering - must I replace the valve cover gasket? I have both a no-brand and a Mercedes genuine on hand, but if its working, and the gasket is only 6k/3 years old, can I just leave it?

Thanks all,

Montclair, NJ
1982 300D Turbo
Petrol Blue Green
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Old 03-03-2020, 12:35 PM
dkr dkr is offline
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Posts: 649
I would replace it with the OEM gasket. Victor reinz has a reputation for leaking.

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Old 03-03-2020, 01:39 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 1,668
I remember feeling really concerned about that the first time I did my own valve adjustment. 6000 isn't that long... I'd reuse it. If it weeps, throw on the new one. Doesn't take that long and you might end up saving some rubber for another day.

Re: gaskets, same deal. I've found the Victor Reinz gaskets to be so/so... meaning, I've had some leak and require adjustment and or RTV (not my job), others have had no issues. The Mercedes gaskets, however, have never given me any issues.
1981 240D 4sp manual. Ivory White.
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Old 03-03-2020, 02:15 PM
funola's Avatar
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Location: NYC
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I have re-used them many times w/o leaks. I soak it in hot (boiling) water for about 15 min before install.
85 300D turbo pristine w 157k when purchased 161K now
83 300 D turbo 297K runs great. SOLD!
83 240D 4 spd manual- parted out then junked
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Old 03-03-2020, 03:10 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Texas USA
Posts: 185
slight thread jack

I've got a fel-pro on the way for an valve check / adj this weekend.

so if the new one gives me issues I can reuse old one without concern?
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Old 03-03-2020, 04:57 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Greater Metropolitan Beaverdam VA
Posts: 2,877
If the gasket has been in place for 3 years regardless of mileage, I personally would replace it.

On the other hand, it is a relatively simple matter to replace the gasket if it shows a leak. Also, I would try the VR gasket. Some work well, some don't. I never use any sort of gasket cement. It is a scab that is painful to pull off later. If something is needed to keep the gasket in place while installing, I recommend a coating of simple assembly grease.

Your call; easy to recover from if it doesn't go as you dream it should. One more tip; I remove the cruise control actuator. Three small bolts and it offers more maneuvering room for setting the valve cover.
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Old 03-03-2020, 05:55 PM
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Location: Wilmington, NC by the Atlantic ocean
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I used Elring gaskets on Mutt (OM617 so a slightly different animal). It sort of oozed not a real gusher but annoying. After several attempts I flattened the cam cover using stick-on sand paper on my table saw table (it's pretty flat) and the issue went away. Just sayin' you might want to check flatness on the cover if you have leaks.

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Old 03-03-2020, 07:07 PM
vwnate1's Avatar
Diesel Dandy
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Sunny So. Cal. !
Posts: 6,982
Post Rockerbox Rubber Gaskets

I tend to $pring for the factory gaskets and wait until the old one begins to weep ~ as long as there are no tiny cracks in it you're good to go .

1982 240D 407,XXX miles
Ignorance is the mother of suspicion and fear is the father

I did then what I knew how to do ~ now that I know better I do better
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Old 03-05-2020, 02:29 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North New Jersey
Posts: 431
ok - ty for comments. for record - the one that is on their now is MB brand and there are zero leaks.

if I were to replace - I'd use the MB one I have - save the VR in case of a later problem or a ****up.
Montclair, NJ
1982 300D Turbo
Petrol Blue Green
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Old 03-05-2020, 07:30 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: Anaheim
Posts: 564
Devil's advocate here, but I reused my valve cover gasket. Mine is OEM Mercedes and leaked like a sieve, so I just put a layer of black RTV on it and put everything back together. Worked great and now I have no leaks.

Milan Brown 1979 240D, rebuilt OM617.952 turbo diesel, rebuilt 722.315 transmission (my only daily driver)

Instagram: @maximed93
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