Making Your Ride Leak-Free At Last: How to Find the Right Crankcase Gasket Set?
When you start to see small black puddles under your vehicle, you should start to worry about your crankcase-the crankshaft housing. This is an indication that its seals are already blown and leaky, exposing your crank to unwanted elements and coolant seepage. Don't wait for serious damage on your crankshaft to happen; replace the gasket that keeps its housing leak-free. You can either get an original equipment (OE) or an aftermarket part for the crankcase gasket set you need, but take into consideration the material used.
The quality of materials first
- Rubber is an elastomer known for its flexibility and high water-resistance characteristics. It is the common material for seals and gaskets to this day, and it is cheaper than any of the more innovative materials used in manufacturing high-performance automotive gaskets. If you are simply replacing your gone-bad crankcase gasket set, a rubber set of gasket is not a bad choice.
- Silicone is a synthetic compound with very high resistance to water and heat. This is now the more popular choice for automobile manufacturers and engine rebuilders because of its better service life and performance. That's why it should be on top of your list.
- Nitrile rubber is a synthetic rubber copolymer of acrylonitrile (ACN) and butadiene with trade names Nipol, Krynac, and Europrene. This material is known for its high resistance to oil, fuel, and other chemicals. If looking for a more innovative but cheap alternative for your crankcase gasket set, this is a good pick.
- Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) or Teflon is a fluorocarbon solid and is known to be hydrophobic because of the extremely high electronegativity of fluorine. It also offers very low friction coefficients to solids, making it the best choice for replacement for your crankcase gasket set. Just don't forget that quality comes with a price, so expect to shell out a bit more for this gasket material.
- Polychlorotrifluoroethylene is a thermoplastic Chlorofluoropolymer that is pretty much similar to Polytetrafluoroethylene. The difference is in the homopolymer. PTFE has Tetrafluoroethylene, while Polychlorotrifluoroethylene has Chlorotrifluoroethylene (CTFE). The result is lower water vapor transmission rate, making it a good choice of material for a gasket.
- Metal is also used as a gasket in some automobile applications because of its malleability and ductility. But it is a good conductor of electricity and heat, so it may even cause bad than good things in your crankcase if you choose it for your crankcase.
DIY Installation of a New Crankcase Gasket Set
Gaskets are not difficult to maintain if only you could keep track of their service life. But you can't, and the only time you will know they need to be replaced is when they are already causing serious leak problems. That is the story of your of crankcase gasket set. By now, it has exposed your crankshaft to the elements. What you can do is replace it before your engine starts to operate poorly and need a new crankshaft. If you want to do the installation on your own, use this step-by-step instruction:
Difficulty level: Difficult
Things You'll Need
- New crankcase gasket
- Socket wrench set
- Oil drain pan
- Rag or old but clean cloth
- Ft-lb torque wrench
- 5W-30 oil
Step 1: Remove the oil drain plug of your oil pan or sump and allow used oil to drain out.
Step 2: Unscrew the bolts that secures the oil pan to the crankcase, and take the pan off.
Step 3: Peel the old crankcase gasket off if it doesn't fall out. Do the same to the rest of the gaskets in your crankcase.
Step 4: Scrape remnants of adhesive or gasket off the mating surfaces and allow them to dry. Use rag or used but clean cloth if you need to.
Step 5: Prepare the replacements in your new crankcase gasket set. Use automotive-strength adhesive if recommended by your dealer, and allow curing time for best result before installation.
Step 6: Align each crankshaft gasket on the mounting surface. Make sure they are seated properly. Mount to specific locations in the crankcase.
Step 7: Reinstall everything back in place and secure with mounting bolts. NOTE: Use the required torque. You will find the correct ones from your dealer or on your owner's manual. Overtightening can cause stress on the gasket that may lead to early damage.