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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Im new to the group and have a 98 Merc Tracer LS and I've heard a ticking too around the right side of the valve cover area. If this is the dropped valve problem, is it an easy fix for the DIY mechanic? I like tinkering and have no qualms about pulling some bolts out and looking inside. What would I look for under the cover? Also, is there a good reference to get some new valves? I would assume this wouldn't require pulling the engine or anything, or am I wrong?

Also, still getting around 30+ gas mileage driving 55-60 miles a day (65-70 mph pretty standard).

Thanks!
 

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A ticking is not always a Seat problem. It can also be because the lifter are not getting enough oil pressure to keep them charged, specially when hot or at operating temperature.
What you can do is remove the valve cover and see how is the inside.
Does it have any sludge or heavy sludge with loosen varnish particles? Any kind of black deposits?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm hoping to do this if I get a new valve cover. If there is anything like sludge in there, what is the best way to clean it out? Any special fluid to use? I can see in the oil cap and it kind of yellowish colored. Thats about all I can see without the top off. Is that just a case of removing the bolts on top of the valve cover to get that off?
 

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I was also wondering if there is any kind of "preempitve" valve inspection/cleaning that can be done for the infamous dropped valve seat. I can hear the valves chattering in there, nothing too loud, but all the things I've seen/read have made me a bit paranoid and interested.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Should I plan on having a new gasket for the cover before I remove it? Seem like a good thing to replace at the time if its original with 165k miles? If so any suggestion on where to get it? I want to paint the cover while it's off. Also, should 500 degree paint work ok on the cover?
 
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