GM Cavalier/Sunbird/Skyhawk/Firenza 1982-1994

Rocker Arm (Valve) Cover

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



1.8L, 2.0L and 2.2L OHV Engines
1982-86 VEHICLES

See Figure 1

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Remove the air cleaner.
  4.  
  5. For the 2.0L engine, disconnect the canister purge line and the PCV valve.
  6.  
  7. For the 2.0L engine, tag and disconnect plug wires at the spark plugs, then pull the wires away from the rocker arm cover.
  8.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: Make sure to tighten the rocker arm cover bolts to specification when the RTV sealant is still wet

  1. For the 1.8L engine, remove the distributor cap with the spark plug wires. Remove the spark plug wire clip from the rocker arm cover and lay the wires and cap aside.
  2.  
  3. For the 1.8L engine, tag and disconnect the vacuum hoses and pipes at the alternator bracket, at the front of the valve cover, at the deceleration valve and at the PCV valve. Detach the wires at the oxygen sensor, carburetor choke (if equipped) and the ground wire at the bracket.
  4.  
  5. Loosen the accelerator linkage bracket.
  6.  
  7. Remove the rocker arm cover bolts.
  8.  

When removing the rocker arm (valve) cover, be sure not to distort the sealing flange.

  1. Remove the rocker arm cover. If the cover adheres to the cylinder head, lightly tap the end of the cover with a rubber mallet. If necessary, carefully pry until loose.
  2.  
  3. Clean the sealing surfaces of the cylinder head and the cover.
  4.  

To install:
  1. Place a 1 / 8 in. (3mm) wide bead of RTV sealant all around the rocker arm cover sealing surface.
  2.  

When going around the attaching bolt holes, always flow the RTV on the inboard side of the bolt holes.

  1. Install the valve cover and tighten the bolts evenly to 8 ft. lbs. (10 Nm) while the sealant is still wet.
  2.  

Keep the sealant out of the bolt holes as this could cause a "hydraulic lock" condition which could damage the head casting.

  1. The rest of installation is the reverse of the removal procedure.
  2.  
  3. Connect the negative battery cable, then start the engine and check for leaks.
  4.  

1987-94 VEHICLES

See Figure 2

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Disconnect the air intake hose at the throttle body and air cleaner.
  4.  
  5. For the 2.0L engine, detach the hose from the intake to the cover.
  6.  
  7. For the 2.2L engine, disconnect the PCV hose(s).
  8.  
  9. Unfasten the rocker arm cover bolts and remove the cover. Remove and discard the gasket.
  10.  
  11. Clean the sealing surfaces of the cylinder head and the cover using a suitable degreaser.
  12.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Rocker arm (valve) cover removal and installation - 1994 2.2L (VIN 4) engine shown

To install:
  1. Install a new gasket, then reposition the cover and tighten the bolts evenly to 8 ft. lbs. (10 Nm).
  2.  
  3. For the 2.2L engine, connect the PCV hose(s).
  4.  
  5. For the 2.0L engine, attach the intake-to-cover hose.
  6.  
  7. Attach the air intake hose at the throttle body and air cleaner.
  8.  
  9. Connect the negative battery cable, then start the engine and check for leaks.
  10.  

2.8L and 3.1L Engines
1985-86 VEHICLES (LEFT SIDE)

See Figure 3

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Detach the coil at the bracket.
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the PCV hose.
  6.  
  7. Tag and disconnect the spark plug wires at the plugs, then pull the wires away from the rocker arm cover.
  8.  
  9. If necessary for access, loosen the accelerator linkage bracket.
  10.  

When removing the rocker arm cover, use extreme care not to distort the sealing flange or leakage will result.

  1. Unfasten the retaining bolts, then remove the rocker arm cover. If the cover adheres to the cylinder head, lightly tap the end of the cover with a rubber mallet. If necessary, carefully pry until loose. Do not distort the sealing flange.
  2.  
  3. Clean the sealing surfaces of the head and the cover.
  4.  

To install:
  1. Place a 1 / 8 in. (3mm) wide bead of RTV sealant at the intake manifold and the cylinder head split line.
  2.  
  3. Position the valve cover, then evenly tighten the bolts to 90 inch lbs. (10 Nm) while the sealant is still wet.
  4.  
  5. Install the remaining parts, then connect the negative battery cable. Start the engine and check for leaks.
  6.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 3: Removing the rocker arm (valve) cover - 1985 2.8L engine shown

1985-86 VEHICLES (RIGHT SIDE)
  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Remove the intake runners.
  4.  

When removing the rocker arm cover, use extreme care not to distort the sealing flange or leakage will result.

  1. Unfasten the rocker arm cover securing bolts, then remove the rocker arm cover. If the cover adheres to the cylinder head, lightly tap the end of the cover with a rubber mallet. If necessary, carefully pry until loose. Do not distort the sealing flange.
  2.  

To install:
  1. Clean the sealing surfaces of the head, intake manifold and the valve cover.
  2.  
  3. Place a 1 / 8 in. (3mm) wide bead of RTV sealant at the intake manifold and the cylinder head split line.
  4.  
  5. Position the valve cover, then install the retaining bolts. Tighten bolts evenly to 90 inch lbs. (10 Nm) while the sealant is still wet.
  6.  
  7. Install the remaining parts, then connect the negative battery cable. Start the engine and check for leaks.
  8.  

1987-90 VEHICLES (LEFT SIDE)
  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Detach the bracket tube at the cover.
  4.  
  5. Remove the plug wire cover.
  6.  
  7. Disconnect the heater hose at the filler neck.
  8.  

When removing the rocker arm cover, use extreme care not to distort the sealing flange or leakage will result.

  1. Unfasten the cover retaining bolts, then remove the cover. If the cover adheres to the cylinder head, lightly tap the end of the cover with a soft rubber mallet or palm of the hand. Do not distort or scratch the sealing flange.
  2.  
  3. Remove and discard the gasket.
  4.  

To install:
  1. Clean the sealing surfaces of the head and the cover.
  2.  
  3. Install a new gasket and make sure it is seated properly in the rocker cover groove.
  4.  
  5. Apply a suitable RTV sealant in the notch.
  6.  
  7. Position the rocker arm cover, then install the retaining bolts. Tighten the bolts evenly to 6-9 ft. lbs. (8-12 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Install the remaining parts, then connect the negative battery cable. Start the engine and check for leaks.
  10.  

1991-94 VEHICLES (LEFT SIDE)

See Figure 4

On 3.1L engines, an "Idle Learn" procedure must be performed which requires the use of a scan tool.

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Detach the coolant bleed pipe from the thermostat housing.
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the vent tube from the rocker arm cover-to-air inlet.
  6.  
  7. Unfasten the retaining bolts, then remove the rocker arm cover. If the cover sticks to the cylinder head, remove by carefully bumping the end of the rocker arm cover with the palm or your hand or a soft rubber mallet. Remove and discard the gasket and bolt grommets.
  8.  
  9. Clean the sealing surfaces of the cylinder head and valve cover with a suitable degreaser.
  10.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 4: Apply a suitable sealer to the area shown - 1994 3.1L engine shown

To install:
  1. Position a new gasket and bolt grommets, making sure it is properly seated in the valve cover groove. Apply part no. 1052917 or suitable sealer in the cylinder head notch. See the accompanying figure.
  2.  
  3. Position the rocker arm cover, then secure with the retaining bolts. Tighten the bolts to 89 inch lbs. (10 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Attach the vent tube to the rocket arm cover.
  6.  
  7. Fasten the coolant bleed tube to the thermostat housing.
  8.  
  9. Connect the negative battery cable.
  10.  

On the 3.1L engine, a Tech 1® scan tool is needed to perform the "Idle Learn" procedure.

  1. For the 3.1L engine perform the following "Idle Learn" procedure;
    1. Install a Tech 1® scan tool.
    2.  
    3. Turn the ignition to the ON position, engine not running.
    4.  
    5. Select IAC SYSTEM , then IDLE LEARN in the MISC TEST mode.
    6.  
    7. Place the transaxle in park or neutral, as applicable.
    8.  
    9. Proceed with idle learn as directed by the scan tool.
    10.  

  2.  
  3. Start the engine and check for leaks.
  4.  

1987-94 VEHICLES (RIGHT SIDE)

See Figure 4

On 3.1L engines, an "Idle Learn" procedure must be performed which requires the use of a scan tool.

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Unfasten the brake booster vacuum line at the bracket.
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the throttle cable and vacuum line bracket at the plenum.
  6.  
  7. Detach the power steering lines from the alternator bracket stud.
  8.  
  9. Unfasten the rear alternator brace.
  10.  
  11. Remove the serpentine belt.
  12.  
  13. As outlined in Engine Electrical of this repair guide, remove the alternator and lay it aside.
  14.  
  15. Tag and disconnect the rear bank spark plug wires from the plugs, then position them aside.
  16.  
  17. Remove the PCV valve.
  18.  
  19. Unfasten the rocker arm cover retaining bolts, then remove the cover. Remove and discard the gasket and bolt grommets.
  20.  
  21. If the cover adheres to the cylinder head, lightly tap the end of the cover with a soft rubber mallet or palm of the hand. Do not distort or scratch the sealing flange.
  22.  

To install:
  1. Clean the sealing surfaces of the head and the cover.
  2.  
  3. Install new bolt grommets, then install a new gasket making sure it is seated properly in the rocker arm cover groove.
  4.  
  5. Apply RTV sealant in the notch.
  6.  
  7. Position the cover, then secure using the retaining bolts. Tighten the bolts evenly to 89 inch lbs. (10 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Install the remaining parts, then connect the negative battery cable.
  10.  

On the 3.1L engine, a Tech 1® scan tool is needed to perform the "Idle Learn" procedure.

  1. For the 3.1L engine perform the following "Idle Learn" procedure;
    1. Install a Tech 1® scan tool.
    2.  
    3. Turn the ignition to the ON position, engine not running.
    4.  
    5. Select IAC SYSTEM , then IDLE LEARN in the MISC TEST mode.
    6.  
    7. Place the transaxle in park or neutral, as applicable.
    8.  
    9. Proceed with idle learn as directed by the scan tool.
    10.  

  2.  
  3. Start the engine and check for leaks.
  4.  

 
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