How to Choose the Right Cam Adjust Solenoid for Your Ride
It's funny how you don't seem to notice the smaller but vital parts of your vehicle until they start to give you problems. This is best exemplified by the cam adjust solenoid, the small valve positioned right behind your cam gear, secured by four bolts at the side nearest your timing or accessory belt. It allows you to adjust your camshaft to get the best performance and lowest emissions from your engine. Your car will still run even if this part is bad, but it will not be as good and clean, so get a replacement as soon as you get a CEL.
Getting what your automobile actually needs
You don't need to buy the most modern cam adjust solenoid if it does not fit your automobile's specifications. What you need to consider are:
Fit of the replacement. Make sure that the part you will get is compatible with your system. Look for:
- OE or original equipment part. A cam adjust solenoid that is made by your automobile manufacturer is the best replacement you can find in the market. Although it is more expensive than other direct-fit products, it will work like your original part.
- Direct-fit product. There are a number of automotive parts and accessories manufacturers who have already embarked in making OE-type replacements. These items feature dimensions and designs that are similar to your original, so rest assured that you will still get what your automobile really needs. Also, these products are sometimes much cheaper than OE parts.
Kit vs. individual pack
Whenever you need to change a part, it is best that the fitting and/or mounting hardware is replaced as well. Doing this will ensure better service life and performance. Good thing that OE and replacement cam adjust solenoid products actually come in:
- A kit. This includes new gasket, wiring, and connectors that will completely restore the performance of your cam adjust solenoid. If you want not only a full recovery of your cam system's performance but improvement as well, getting a complete kit is best.
- Individual pack. If you only want to literally replace your original but gone-bad cam adjust solenoid, getting this part as a solo item is made possible by retailers in the industry. The problem with this is that you need to reuse your old part's hardware and fitting. If they don't seem to be good enough, you'll need to spend for new ones as separate packages.
DIY Maintenance and Installation of Cam Adjust Solenoid
The cam adjust solenoid of your vehicle is very important in achieving your engine's best operation. If it fails, you can no longer adjust the timing of your valves and thereby compromise your powerhouse operations. For this reason, you need to maintain the cam adjust solenoid at its best working condition. Luckily, this part is not very susceptible to wear and damage. The only thing that can cause its failure other than age is dirt, brought about by the system's oil circulation. So, make sure that you keep your system lubricated with clean oil via regular oil change. If you get a CEL saying a replacement for your cam adjust solenoid is necessary, get a direct-fit replacement for it immediately.
Level of difficulty: Moderate
- Screw driver
- Rug or old but clean clothe
- Always use safety glasses and gloves when working on your cam adjust solenoid.
- Wait for your engine to cool before changing your cam adjust solenoid.
- Disconnect your battery's negative cable to avoid electrocution.
Step 1: Remove your engine cover.
Step 2: Unfasten the screws that secure the solenoid in its place.
Step 4: Take the old solenoid off along with its gasket and/or seal.
Step 3: Clean the area by removing deep-seated dirt and unwanted elements.
Step 4: Mount the new gasket or seal and the cam adjust solenoid.
NOTE: Never use its old gaskets and seals to maximize service life and performance.
Step 4: Put everything back in its place.
For best restoration result, change your oil after the installation of your new cam adjust solenoid. And to check if you've done the installation right, turn your engine on and let it run for a while. If there are no leaks or changes in the fitting of your new part, you just did a great job!