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Thread: How to adjust your valves, 97-01 CRV

  1. #1
    Senior Member HondaSUV Senior
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    Default How to adjust your valves, 97-01 CRV

    background:
    the valves on your crv may get tighter with more miles. this is caused by the valve seats sinking under spring pressure. eventually, your valve will be too tight, and it will not quite close all the way during the combustion process. hot gases will squeeze past the hairline opening, and erode the sealing surface of the valve. this of course, prevents proper sealing and your car will start running poorly. if left at this state long enough, will require removal of the head and a valve job (cha-ching!!!)...

    maintenance schedule:
    forum members claim you should adjust your valves every 30k. honda says 100k or when noisey.... myself, i'd probably shoot for 60k unless the car starts missing at an idle...

    time required:
    all in all, this will take an inexperienced person 1.5 hours, and a gear-head a good 45 minutes.

    tools required:
    a 10mm socket on a ratchet to remove the valve cover. a 14mm socket to remove the power steering hose bracket. a 19mm socket to turn the crankshaft pulley bolt and a 12mm socket to loosen the adjustment jam nuts. you will also need a 12mm wrench and a flat-head screwdriver for the precision adjustment. actual cam to rocker gap is set with a typical feeler gauge available at any auto parts store. that's it....

    preparation:
    ATTENTION: this adjustment must be performed with the engine COLD. this means, pull it in the garage on a friday nite, and do the adjustment first thing saturday morning....

    lash setting ('97-'01):
    valves should be set on the "loose" side of factory spec as follows...
    intake: .005" feeler gauge slides thru, .006" gauge will not
    exhaust: .008" feeler gauges slides thru, .009" will not

    procedure:
    remove the resonator using a 10mm socket and then the power steering hose bracket (driver's side rear of valve cover) with a 14mm socket.


    remove the spark plug wires. if the terminals don't want to pull free of the plug, grease the wire near the boot with silicone grease, then slide the well cover boot up the wire. this will expose the upper hard plastic portion of the spark plug boot. grasp the boot with needle nose pliers and while turning, pull it free. if you don't do this, you could pull the wire completely out of the crimped terminal. this is no fun, trust me. next remove the pcv valve (just pop it out), and then the hose connection at the passenger side rear of the valve cover. all that is left is the seven acorn nuts and the valve cover is ready to come off.


    insert the 19mm socket on a long extension through the access hole in the drivers fenderwell, then turn the crankshaft counter-clockwise until the the cam pulley arrows are pointing straight up.

    hard to see the cam pulley arrow in this pic, but it's obvious in person.... note the pulley has four spokes. you will use these spokes to determine 90 degree clockwise increments when adjusting valves on cylinders 1, 3, 4, 2 in that order....


    now, feel the rocker pairs on the number one cylinder (closest to the crankshaft pulley). with the cam arrows pointing up, these pairs, both intake and exhaust should feel loose. note that both intake and exhaust cam lobes will be pointing horizontally away, so none of the lobe is pushing on the rocker arm.... the exhaust side is the row of valves nearest the exhaust manifold and vice versa. there will be other rockers that feel loose on other cylinders, but there will not be both intake and exhaust on the same cylinder, only on the cylinder you need to adjust. adjust the rockers using the 12mm wrench, screwdriver and feeler gage to set the appropriate lash setting. next, rotate the cam pulleys a 1/4 turn and again feel the rockers for the pairs that are loose (will be number three cylinder) and adjust those valves. the next quarter turn will be number four cylinder valves and the final 1/4 turn will be number three cylinder valves... when in doubt, just feel for the loose rocker pairs and check to see that the cam lobes are not depressing the rocker arms...

    in this pic i am adjusting the intake valves on cylinder number one (note position of cam sprockets). see how the cam lobes point horizontally away?...


    be kind to yourself and check the gap/lash before loosening the locknut. some might be right in the sweet spot requiring no work.

    finish tighten the jam nuts using a ratchet or torque wrench (not the open end wrench shown in the pic). the open-end wrench is just to get them snug and perfect before applying proper torque. after the final torque, run the feeler gauge using the go/no-go method one more time to make sure things didn't change after the final torque down....

    reuse all your original gaskets, so long as they did not come loose from the head. if things came loose around the cam ends, then you might try cleaning with alcohol and resealing the corners with rtv sealant. if you are changing your valve cover gasket, then clean the oil away from the camshaft cap corners and apply a little blob of rtv silicone, just at the corners.


    it's not really necessary to clean the oil from the gasket grooves for the rocker cover or spark plug wells. just make sure there are no chunks of grease or dirt that would disrupt the seal. install the cover gasket starting with the portions having the camshaft u-shapes, then work your way around the perimeter.


    when tightening the cover back down, begin in the center and tighten the acorn nuts in outward spiral sequence. do not tighten them all at once. progressively tighten using at least three sprial tightening sequences. the final pass, tighten the acorn nuts until these bottom out and can be tightened no further.

    that's it, you can do it, it's not that bad.

    closing remark:
    this procedure of feeling for loose rockers on exhaust and intake and noting the lobe directions works on nearly any overhead cam engine to identify which valves to adjust. furthermore, the amount you need to turn the cams in between each valve adjustment is pretty simple. for example, a 6-cylinder would require turning the cam sprockets 360 degrees divided by 6 cylinders = 60 degrees, an 8-cylinder = 45 degrees, etc. if you can't see the cam sprockets, then turn the crank twice the amount of the cam, i.e. a 6 cylinder would require 60 degrees times two = 120 degrees. the reason the crank is twice as much is because your engine is a four-stroke. this basically means the crank turns twice in between each opening of the valves or firing of the spark plug. it starts at top dead center with fuel and air compressed, both valves closed. the plug fires and the mixture explodes forcing the crank down 180 degrees (stroke 1). at this point the exhaust valves open, the crank turns 180 degrees to TDC and the exhaust closes while the intake opens (stroke 2). the crank spins another 180 degrees drawing fuel and air into the cylinder (stroke 3), at the bottom of the stroke, the intake closes and it spins 180 degrees to TDC compressing the fuel and air which is where we started (stroke 4). this is why the ratio of cam sprocket to crank sprocket teeth is ALWAYS two. it's true, and once you understand that, valve adjustments are a lot less intimidating.
    Last edited by bry593; 09-15-2012 at 10:35 AM. Reason: rotated wrench & feeler gauge pic for proper viewpoint

  2. #2
    Senior Member HondaSUV Senior
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    if anyone has pictures, please post below. let's get this thing stickied to help all diy'ers out there....
    Last edited by bry593; 08-13-2008 at 06:16 PM.

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    Senior Member HondaSUV Senior
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    Will be doing this over the weekend, just bought my feeler gauges today so I will try to take pics.

  4. #4
    Senior Member HondaSUV Senior
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    Quote Originally Posted by bry593 View Post
    if anyone has pictures, please post below. let's get this thing stickied to help all diy'ers out there....
    Why? This site has been available for more than three years. It's also referenced all over this forum.

    http://home.earthlink.net/~michaelpkeefe/HowTo_ValveAdj.htm

    Search the forum and you will find multiple threads on the subject, like: http://www.hondasuv.com/members/show...lve+adjustment
    Last edited by tsmithvt; 08-13-2008 at 08:45 PM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by tsmithvt View Post
    Why? This site has been available for more than three years. It's also referenced all over this forum.

    http://home.earthlink.net/~michaelpkeefe/HowTo_ValveAdj.htm

    Search the forum and you will find multiple threads on the subject, like: http://www.hondasuv.com/members/show...lve+adjustment
    yup, thats a great tutorial, used it a while back, oh wait, damn its time to do it again....
    -2001 Silver CRV EX AWD AT
    Jackson Racing Supercharger, Eibach springs on Koni, Nuespeed FSB, Addco Rear Sway bar, c-pillar bar, Cusco rear strut bar, Cusco front lower bar.
    -2000 Black CRV LX AWD 5 speed
    Lowered with Ksports.

  6. #6
    Senior Member HondaSUV Elder 'Curly Q Links''s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bry593 View Post

    . Honda says 100k or when noisy.... myself, i'd probably shoot for 60k unless the car starts missing at an idle...
    We've never heard of anybody having 'misfire during idle' as a symptom of tight valves. Only after they've already BURNT.

    Stalling at a traffic light during the warm-up cycle (first four minutes) or the dreaded CHECK ENGINE LIGHT are the only known 'symptoms' anybody ever reports, and even then it's often too late....

    Last edited by 'Curly Q Links'; 08-14-2008 at 10:37 AM. Reason: clarity
    .
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  7. #7
    Senior Member HondaSUV Senior
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    finally added some pics... sorry they are so grainy. my i-phone is my camera these days...

    maybe we should sticky this... it has had 2300 views even without the pics....
    Last edited by bry593; 04-17-2010 at 08:25 PM.

  8. #8
    Junior Member HondaSUV junior in training
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    I agree. This is perfect, I used it without pics for my first time adjusting valves and it worked great!

  9. #9
    Member HondaSUV Senior in training tanV's Avatar
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    this post is very helpful...i did it myself with no problems...very simple took me half an hour to complete...im kinda familiar with it so i was able to just hurry up and do it...i did .004 on the intake and .006 on the exhaust...runs great and less noise...will redo in a week or two to finalize the adjustments..

  10. #10
    Senior Member HondaSUV Mentor BigIslandV's Avatar
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    I am concerned that it was posted that you can turn the crankshaft in either direction! If you turn it clockwise, you run the risk of the timing belt getting loose and jumping one tooth! This would be BAD!

    ONLY TURN THE CRANKSHAFT BOLT COUNTER-CLOCKWISE!

    Here is another, older thread about valve adjustments with some pictures:

    http://hondasuv.com/members/showthre...541#post228541

    There is also no need to jack the vehicle up. Just turn the wheels to the left for access.

    PS - Be careful about using METRIC (MM) vs INCHES (SAE) in your adjustment. The correct INCH (SAE) equivalent is .003 to .005 for the intake and .006 to .008 for the exhaust.
    99 EX 5sp and 04 EX Auto CR-V's, 06 Ruckus, 89 Jeep Cherokee Beach Finder... Big Island, Hawaii . . . Aloha!

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