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5th Generation Maxima (2000-2003) Learn more about the 5th Generation Maxima, including the VQ30DE-K and VQ35DE engines.

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Old 04-06-2007, 10:31 PM   #1
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VQ35DE Valve Cover and Gasket Replacement How-to

Well, finally got this done last weekend. First noticed oil in my spark plug chamber, #5, closest one to the driver's side, rear. Was fairly straight-forward, just use common sense.
I used this write-up for the IM removal, Greg's How-To. I have added a write-up from this point forward.
I realize once you pull off the IM that the valve cover removal is pretty easy, but I hadn't seen a write-up for the valve cover change and thought I would make one up for people who are a little more apprehensive about their first time or just simply want a guide.

Valve Cover and Valve Cover Gasket Replacement


I have hi-res pics available for anyone that wants more detail. Just let me know.
All products were purchased from Dave B. No problems and great service. FYI, the new valve cover comes with a PCV valve.
Additionally, I did order the 2004 valve cover and gasket, much cheaper.
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Old 04-06-2007, 11:38 PM   #2
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I did this a while ago as well. Piece of cake and like you mentioned, the IM is not as bad as people make it sound.
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Old 04-07-2007, 03:18 PM   #3
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No, I have done the IM twice now and it is pretty cake.
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Old 04-07-2007, 03:40 PM   #4
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i wonder if doing this will help the people who have oil burning issues?
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Old 04-07-2007, 04:03 PM   #5
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Damm i thought i was the only ona that had this.

I got the same thing on the cylinder closest to the firewall and the throttle body.


Plan to do it sometime this month. Am I causing more damage by putting it off?
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Old 04-07-2007, 04:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maxspeed96CT
Damm i thought i was the only ona that had this.

I got the same thing on the cylinder closest to the firewall and the throttle body.


Plan to do it sometime this month. Am I causing more damage by putting it off?
Alot of people have this problem and with the exact same cylinder, #5, you have.
I don't think anyone has a firm idea if putting it off will do more damage. I put mine off for a year after I changed the plugs. Who knows how long it was going on before then.
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Old 04-07-2007, 06:04 PM   #7
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i got both my valve covers changed under warranty for my oil burning issue...didnt help.

good write-up and great pics
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Old 04-07-2007, 07:16 PM   #8
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well it wouldn't, would it? That's not the problem. And as long as the oil doesn't have water in it, it won't do any damage to the coil.
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Old 04-08-2007, 08:38 AM   #9
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Great write up.

I was looking into getting the parts but on the website theres the right and left. Which one did you get? Part #?

Also did you do the rear or just the front?
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Old 04-08-2007, 10:28 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inspiredbykev
Great write up.

I was looking into getting the parts but on the website theres the right and left. Which one did you get? Part #?

Also did you do the rear or just the front?
I replaced the rear cover. I ordered it over the phone from Dave B. Not sure of the part number. Will see if the invoice has it on their. If there is a pic of them, get the one that doesn't have the opening for the oil reservoir.
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Old 04-08-2007, 10:30 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inspiredbykev
Great write up.

I was looking into getting the parts but on the website theres the right and left. Which one did you get? Part #?

Also did you do the rear or just the front?
FYI, "left" = front and "right" = rear
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Old 04-08-2007, 10:42 AM   #12
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Nice write up.

I inspired you?
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Old 04-08-2007, 10:49 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevlo911
Nice write up.

I inspired you?
Thanks.

What??
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Old 04-09-2007, 09:46 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inspiredbykev
Great write up.

I was looking into getting the parts but on the website theres the right and left. Which one did you get? Part #?

Also did you do the rear or just the front?
If you do the rear, remember you don't have to buy a PCV valve.
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Old 04-09-2007, 02:08 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Epacy
If you do the rear, remember you don't have to be a PCV valve.

You mean BUY right?
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Old 04-09-2007, 02:19 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realtor
You mean BUY right?
Yes, changed.
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Old 03-26-2008, 07:24 AM   #17
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Bump because I noticed this about 2 months ago but never had a chance to do anything:

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Pretty sure that is oil buildup under my front valve cover. Seems that most of you are having issues with the rear valve cover. Anyway, new valve covers will be ordered shortly from Dave B. I need to clean that engine bay up at some point I guess, lol.
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Old 03-26-2008, 07:53 AM   #18
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It's probably time for me to do something too. I haven't touched it except to change to 1 step colder plugs. How many miles do you currently have now, Joel? I'm sitting at 103,xxx. blah.....
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Old 03-26-2008, 07:54 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deckdout2 View Post
It's probably time for me to do something too. I haven't touched it except to change to 1 step colder plugs. How many miles do you currently have now, Joel? I'm sitting at 103,xxx. blah.....
I'm at 60,04X as of this morning.
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Old 03-26-2008, 12:46 PM   #20
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so puppetmaster, since that oil buildup on the front of your engine is probably coming from your front valve cover, will those of us whose rear valve cover is leaking notice a buildup on the rear of the engine?

1 more question... the rear valve cover refers to the cover over the rear bank of cylinders, and the front valve cover is over the front bank of cylinders right?
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Old 03-26-2008, 12:51 PM   #21
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Quote:
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I'm at 60,04X as of this morning.
I need a civic.
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Old 03-26-2008, 01:06 PM   #22
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ive seen more problems with rears than fronts in all years of maximas.

why is that?
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Old 03-26-2008, 03:18 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zelot View Post
ive seen more problems with rears than fronts in all years of maximas.

why is that?
i have no idea, but i'm gonna replace both... i noticed the same buildup in the front as puppetmaster has in his pics.. i couldn't see if there was any buildup in the rear, but i'm gonna replace that anyway
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Old 03-26-2008, 04:44 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zelot View Post
ive seen more problems with rears than fronts in all years of maximas.

why is that?
front gets air ventilation. Rea rockercover sits against firewall on top of exhaust mainafold and underneath intake mainafold. Tight space and since it's made of plastic it gives in.
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Old 03-27-2008, 04:54 PM   #25
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I have the same issue. When I pulled the IM to do the spacers and plugs, the right, rear spark plug chamber was full of oil. I suspected the valve cover but didn't replace it.

Looks like I need to pull the IM again.
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Old 04-03-2008, 02:31 PM   #26
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good info man. When i pulled the spark plugs out just to see 2 4 and 5 were soaked w/ oil. I'll be changing both of my valve covers preety soon.
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Old 04-03-2008, 03:01 PM   #27
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Very good write up. My 99 is starting to leak just around that area. How did yo u know it was the cover and not just the gasket?
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Old 04-05-2008, 09:35 AM   #28
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just found out that my both valve cover are leaking.
time for some dirty work. lol
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Old 04-05-2008, 12:53 PM   #29
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Just did my rear valve cover last year. One note, there is no need to use a bead of sealer on the head. The new valve cover comes with a rubber gasket that should be seated directly on the head.

The only place you will need sealer will be on the passenger side, on either side of the crank. There is a sharp corner that requires a pea sized drop of gasket sealer in both corners.
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Old 04-06-2008, 07:45 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2002 Maxima SE View Post
Just did my rear valve cover last year. One note, there is no need to use a bead of sealer on the head. The new valve cover comes with a rubber gasket that should be seated directly on the head.

The only place you will need sealer will be on the passenger side, on either side of the crank. There is a sharp corner that requires a pea sized drop of gasket sealer in both corners.
I also put some gasketmaker or silicone on the rockercover itself in the grooves pefore i press the rubber gasket in 4-5 little spots around corners and then install the robber one onto the cover to hold it in place at installation, especially for the rear one in case it comes off a little if i touch anything.
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Old 05-02-2008, 05:04 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2002 Maxima SE View Post
Just did my rear valve cover last year. One note, there is no need to use a bead of sealer on the head. The new valve cover comes with a rubber gasket that should be seated directly on the head.

The only place you will need sealer will be on the passenger side, on either side of the crank. There is a sharp corner that requires a pea sized drop of gasket sealer in both corners.
I had to order the gaskets separately. I added a little gasket sealer everywhere. When I changed the spark plugs one of the rear chambers was full of oil, it's been a year and no oil now . I was adding thermal intake spacers so I wanted to do the valve covers at the same time.

Not that hard, just a little scary knowing if you drop anything in the intake manifold the engine could be toast. it took me the better part of a day but I wasn't in a rush and also did the intake spacers. I also did a little cleaning and polishing of the IM while I could get at everything

Side note - why are epacy's internal's a different color than mine?


Eppacy's
Click the image to open in full size.

Mine
Click the image to open in full size.

Shiny new valve cover
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 05-02-2008, 06:18 PM   #32
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Have you been doing Auto-Rx?
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Old 05-02-2008, 08:18 PM   #33
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No, I have been using mobil1 synthetic since I had the car (~2 years), no other additives.
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Old 05-02-2008, 08:54 PM   #34
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so has anybody noticed decreased oil burning with a new valve cover or 2?
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Old 05-02-2008, 08:58 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wyche89 View Post
so has anybody noticed decreased oil burning with a new valve cover or 2?
i sure as hell didnt...most others havent either...if the consumption problem is really noticeable...it isnt just the valve covers
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Old 05-03-2008, 05:45 AM   #36
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No, I have been using mobil1 synthetic since I had the car (~2 years), no other additives.
My internals look just like yours (even down to the two discolored rings). I've been using synthetic (Mobil and GC) since 10k miles. Epacy's are due to varnish from dino oil.
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Old 05-03-2008, 07:12 AM   #37
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I did the 04 valve cover fix and still burn oil.
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Old 05-03-2008, 07:52 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2002 Maxima SE View Post
My internals look just like yours (even down to the two discolored rings). I've been using synthetic (Mobil and GC) since 10k miles. Epacy's are due to varnish from dino oil.
Thanks, so is varnish bad?
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Old 05-03-2008, 08:13 AM   #39
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Thanks, so is varnish bad?
Varnish is sticky, so in the wrong places (lifters) it can be bad if excessive. His appears to be a light coating.
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Old 02-21-2009, 03:39 PM   #40
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i apologize for the bump, but i ran into a small issue while replacing my valve covers... i over-torqued one of the bolts on the rear valve cover, and it separated.. is it terrible that the one bolt is missing? and how do i fix it? can i just drill a hole into the broken off bolt to make some new threads, then put a new bolt in there?
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Last edited by wyche89; 02-21-2009 at 03:44 PM..
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Old 02-21-2009, 03:39 PM
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