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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 91 EGT was missing rather badly and I couldn't quite figure out why. I tried a lot of things, and swapping plugs helped a lot. I found that the valve cover gasket was leaking, so I replaced that, but didn't have a torque wrench to get it locked down precisely. I wanted to throw on new plug wires, so I went to the local auto parts store & bought some. While I was there I asked if I could loan a wrench. They asked what size and what to set the torque at. I said 60-70 inch and a 10mm socket. He got it all set up and handed it to me. I started tightening with the center bolt and I gave a little twist, and POP the bolt snapped. He had it set to 70 POUNDS! Now, it's not on an edge or anything, and there are 3 center bolts. This one is dead center. I didnt pull the valve cover off to know if the break is flush with the head or not, so Im not sure if I'll be able to back it out with a lock wrench or not. If not, what can I do to get it out without paying a lot for service? Also, if I don't replace this bolt, do you think it will lead to oil leaking or some kind of serious problems? The engine is purring like a kitten now, and I think the problem was more the wires or PCV valve than the oil leaking onto one of the plugs like it was, but I'm not sure how bad of, if any at all, a leak this will cause.
 

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i snapped a bolt head a while ago, but i didnt have any replacements at the time.
so i left it on til i could get some, and there was a little leak, but not too much, i got replacements at the local junk yard.
you can replace it yourself if you dont mind taking the cover off again, i just used pliers to un-screw it.

if you cant get it out with pliers, you could probably tap it out and re-thread the head.
 

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A couple of comments.

1. The difference between 70 in-lbs and 70 ft-lbs is enormous (factor of twelve, by coincidence). You can do 70 in-lbs with your baby finger. 70 ft-lbs takes moderate effort. You should have known you were going way overboard yourself. I'm not at all surprised that a bolt with a 10 mm head snapped at 70 ft-lbs. Always check the gradings on the tool - they should be marked right on the adjuster.
2. If you torqued properly, in sequence and steps, then you have over-torqued the hell out of all of them. In this case, pull the valve cover and start over, with a replacement valve cover and gasket, which you will have squashed completely.
3. If you didn't torque properly (ie went directly to 70 ft-lbs with the centre bolt without even inserting the other two bolts first, then you will still have a warped valve cover. However, I'd simply change your oil to get any fragments out of there and then not worry about it. The valve cover sees virtually no pressure. It may leak a bit of oil because it's a bit warped, but this is of no consequence.
 

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if its flush at the head... do you know anyone with a welder? tack a weld right on the screw... dont worry about being percise because the head is aluminum and a wire feed welder wont bond to it for the most part (if you get it hot enough it may take small slivers from just around the bolt but nothing major) then use pliers. if you dont know anyone with a welder go to a body shop and see if for like 30 bucks or somethin they will take the time to do it... i mean if not through the shop im sure an employee wouldnt mind spending 5 min of his lunch break for 30 bucks.

yeah... the valve cover you dont even need a torque wrench... just get them all evenly snug on any car.

good luck man but i cannot hate (along with everyone else... we have all done stupid things before and well... just look at the "bone head mistake - No oil cap" thread. good luck man
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, in retrospect, I knew I was torquing too much, but it didn't take much to snap it. I'd already tightened the bolts snugly with a small socket wrench in sequence. I took the car to an auto parts store to buy a pcv valve and plug wires. I used their torque wrench to get it proper... I started with the center bolt, and din't do any of the other bolts. It snapped pretty quickly, and I don't think there was any damage to the cover. I'll check when I pull it off and replace the gasket again. Right now I don't know if the bolt broke off flush or not.
 
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