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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It is now apparent that my 1997 V-6 Camry has leaking valve cover gaskets, especially the rear one. So, I will most likely tear into it this weekend and replace them both. Before doing so, I have a few questions. First, is the standard FelPro rubber gasket from a local auto parts store okay, or is it best to get a Toyota one? I've read the posts about using RTV, but I'm more predisposed to using what was designed for the task, so I'll most likely be putting a gasket back in. Second, will the valve covers come off without removing any of the timing belt covers? I would assume so, but wanted to make certain before starting. I'm hoping all that I really need to do is remove the upper intake to be able to access the rear valve cover. Finally, are there any other problem areas I should check on the rear of the engine while the upper intake is off? I recently replaced the spark plugs with new OE plugs so they should be fine. Any additional info regarding the valve cover gasket change would be appreciated.

Regards,

Robert K
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks, but still didn't answer my questions

I appreciate the links to the threads. Read them all. But they didn't really answer my questions. I need to order gaskets today and I'd like to know if the Toyota OE gaskets are worth the premium over FelPro and Beck Arney, which I can get locally and probably much cheaper. I still also would like to know if the valve covers easily come off once I get the upper intake off.

Thanks!

Robert K
 

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to be honest, with my toyota, i go with oem.

there's no question on fit, and the durability is predictable. questionable reliability is Not "worth" saving a few dollars over...
 

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TN Pussy Man
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stick with the toyota gaskets.

you'll save 10bucks going with aftermarket. not worth it considering it should be on your car for another 200K
 

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mixed bag 'o vehicles
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i agree our boy from NYC, i use OEM gaskets for my car. i think its worth spending the extra, what, like $10 for them. a gasket for the valve covers is the right way to go as opposed to RTV in this case.
 

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Water Bypass Hose in Engine Block of V6 Engines

Finally, are there any other problem areas I should check on the rear of the engine while the upper intake is off?
Excellent question, there is a little rubber hose under the intake manifold that might become a problem area on a very high mileage V6 engine. But accessing it means some aditional work (removing the intake manifold and replacing the gasket) and expense.
Here's what i mean, underneath the intake manifold in the block is the "water bypass hose" in the image below. They say to change this rubber hose everytime the intake manifold comes off for any reason. If i were doing this chore i'd consider doing the additional work just to change that hose.

 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for all the great help and suggestions!

Called Lou Fusz Toyota in St. Louis today to order OE gaskets. Unfortunately, I did this before reading about the hose. I hadn't planned on removing the lower intake, just the upper. I suppose I'll have to think about that one. I could possibly get the hose at our local dealer if he has it in stock. Unfortunately, our local dealer appears to believe each OE part is made of a small amount of gold, because they charge quite a bit more than Lou Fusz. It really seems such a waste to have a dealer in town, but have to order the parts from three hours away. Such is life.

Grace and peace,

Robert K
 

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TN Pussy Man
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^ don't worry...it's not a MUST do, since in the end, all you have to really do to get to the intake manifold is remove the intake plenum, which can be done in about 15min after you've done it a number of times

but it's one of those "you may as well" since you're back there and taking everything off anyway

that, and it's a lot easier to get to the rearvalve cover when the manifold is off as well....
 
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