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Now i need a new Lower Rocker Arm Pressure Switch, Please help

1125 Views 43 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  a1smith
Continuing My Previous Post asking about the VVT Solenoid Gaskets, I Obviously had to buy a set on ebay. Installed it tonight, the top piece of the lower gasket didnt fit perfect until i put it in where it holds it aligned, i doubt thats normal but i had no choice at that point, the Original one was definitely old and flatter and really stuck in there, and that lower one had snapped when removing it. Got everything done and Put back together, and very very slowly i would see a drip of oil just below the dipstick, so it was leaking. looked up torque specs to be about 8-9 ftlb, And realized that the bolts felt fairly loose, especially compared to how tight it was when breaking the bolts free. so i started to tighten, and after like 4 turns one bolt snapped. the entire time i turned it never felt like it was getting any tighter. I just re-disassembled it, the other two bolts are stretched and would have snapped too. I tried to get out the broken bolt piece, but its only got like 2mm sticking up and its not flat, so i cant get a grip with pliers. i guess in a way im lucky enough that it seems to be stuck in a Lower rocker arm Oil pressure switch, and not something major, But now i have to replace this rocker arm Oil pressure switch. i took out the two visible bolts and it won't come off. looking up a picture of it, it seems like there is another small bolt under the valve cover? so now im looking at removing the intake so i can remove the valve cover just so i can get this rocker arm switch off? And then i would have to purchase a GATES VVS320 Which Comes with the entire solenoid and rocker arm all in one that could be bolted on and done with. Is this what i need to do? or is there another way to this? My crosstour has no plates because the DMV takes forever to send a state transfer title, so i have to get this one fixed reasonably quickly. Ebay Has the GATES VVS320 Shipped from my state for like $20 more than rock auto, so hopefully id have it the day after its shipped. Opening up the valve cover also means i need a new valve cover gasket (which was just replaced a year ago for $200) Right?
Obviously now i couldnt even drive it to my mechanic if i wanted to, so thats not an option. i don't have money to be towing it places let alone to pay for labor to have it fixed. Sorry this post is so long, But i need to know everything about what i now have to do before i attempt it and something else goes wrong.
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Replacing the lower half of the spool valve is not that simple. Not only do you have to remove the valve cover, but you have to remove all the rocker arms as well.
Sounds like I'm going to have to try to drill that bolt with a very thin bolt removal tool
You most likely will need to use a bolt/screw extractor. Here is an example:

That kit comes with the proper size drill bits for the extractors. You need to make sure the extractor is the right size for the bolt you're extracting.

You need to make REALLY sure you don't let any drill shavings, etc fall into the open ports. Maybe the best way to prevent that is to reinstall the cover and drill the hole for the extractor with the cover in place. Then you can use a shop vac, etc to totally clean the area before removing the cover. Or just leave the cover on and use the screw extractor with the cover in place.

One "mystery" is that you say the bolt was turning and didn't feel like it was getting tighter. That usually means you stripped out the aluminum threads in the bolt hole, but if stripped I don't know how you snapped the bolt. If it is stripped, you'll have to fix those threads with a heli-coil. Hopefully, you haven't done that because then it is even more work.
I managed to get it out. I bought a bolt extractor set that I remembered I already had 4 of, and I didn't even need it because the bolt was loose and it fell out when I started drilling. The threads are fine, the bolts just stretched out and one snapped.

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Nice pictures. Classic examples of necking due to tensile overload. The bolts were torqued way beyond their limit.
When tightening they never got near close to how tight it was when removing them, and they never hit a point of feeling tight, they just kept turning. I don't have a torque wrench that goes down to 3ftlb to do an accurate small measurement, but I need to do something for when I put on the new one
You can use a fish scale (or something similar) 1 foot away from the bolt centerline and pull perpendicular to the wrench (and the bolt) until you see 3 pounds on the scale. Scale accordingly if you can't get 1 foot away - e.g. if 6 inches away go to 6 pounds.
So it's supposed to be at 3ftlb? I saw people saying 8-10 ft lb. The AC Delco digital torque wrench that does 3 ftlb is $100, so I can't get that at this moment.
I don't know the torque spec. I was going by what you said in your post - you mentioned 3 ft-lbs.
I said that because that's the lowest I saw any torque meter go.
The "official" torque spec may be hard to find . . . since the gaskets are technically not a serviceable item I doubt the service manual discusses R&R of that part.

You can use generic fastener torque tables - just lookup the proper grade bolt being threaded into aluminum.
Well they are 10mm bolts, looking up 10mm bolt it said for 6mm thread use 20nm which is like 14.5 ftlb, I had a torque wrench on 10ft lb and they got no where near 10 before stretching and snapping. So I have no clue how to determine when it's tight aside from turning and seeing. Maybe the bolts were just weak, who knows.
When you say 10mm bolt do you mean you used a 10mm wrench on the bolt head or that it was M10 threads? The torque spec is going to go by the thread size and pitch, not the socket/wrench size.

You also need to know the grade of the bolt. My guess is that it is a standard 5.8 (or lower) grade metric bolt. Higher strength bolts like grade 8.8, 10.9, and 12.9 are going to have higher torque specs.
I used a 10mm socket. I would have to re measure, I think the threads were about 4mm thick.
The torque spec according to the TSB is 6 foot pounds.
Alright, thanks. I have literally zero way to measure that.
Get a deflecting beam torque wrench. They work great for low torques and are a lot cheaper than the digital torque wrench you mentioned.

Or the MacGyver torque wrench I mentioned above with the fish scale costs even less if you have a scale already. :D
Does this look good? It could come tomorrow along with the part so I can install it. It's not easy to be that precise on it, 6ftlb is 72 inlb so I'd have to just look at the 75 inlb line

ARES 70214-3/8-inch Drive Beam Torque Wrench - 0-800 Inch/Pounds and 0-90 Newton/Meter Torque Wrench - High Visibility Markings for Easy Readings

Oh this one's extra precise

Neiko 03727A 1/4-Inch-Drive Beam Torque Wrench, SAE and MM Bicycle and Automotive Wrench, Reads in 0–80 Inches/Pounds and 0–9 Newton/Meter Increments
72 in-lbs is only 9% of full scale so you won't get a super accurate reading.

You could try this one which is 0-80 in-lbs. But now you're at 90% of full scale which is a little on the high side but better than using 9% of full scale. I can't personally vouch for the brand but it seems to have a nice rating (high score, lots of reviews). It costs less as well. Note that it is 1/4" drive.

I feel like I've heard of nieko. I'm actually ordering the same china tool with an AutoZone logo from AutoZone with my gift card to get it tomorrow, it's the same precise one up to 80inlb, so hopefully that will work good, and hopefully it's actually useful for something in the future. 80 inlb is only 6.6 ftlb which is barely the minimum of what's needed, I'm seeing everyone online saying 8ftlb, but hopefully it will work.
Be careful with the small torque wrenches for these small torque values. The click they make is very soft and easy to miss, you really have to feel for it more than anything.

One suggestion I have seen in the past is to adapt your small torque wrench up to the size of a lug nut and test torque values on there to get an idea of what the click feels like. You don't have to worry about snapping that off.
Well since it has a gague id be looking at that, I don't think it has any way to make it click. I just have to go to 72 inlb. One day I'll get the 3 ftlb acdelco digital one that can do 3-100 ftlb. Do you happen to have a link to the tsb for this solenoid replacement?
I wouldn't use a 3-100 ft-lb torque wrench for 3 ft-lbs. A good rule of thumb is to use measurement devices around mid-scale, usually at low and high end the error bars are bigger. Yes, with the deflecting beam you won't have the click problem, it's analog.

This AC Delco torque wrench chart illustrates the point. The accuracy for all of the torque wrenches is for 20%-100% of full scale - they don't even publish an accuracy for <20%.

I'll just stick to the one I got then, it's manual and should work good
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All Honda 10mm bolts are 104 in/lbs or 8.7 ft lbs. I’d make sure the bolt I purchase to replace the broken one is of good quality. Cheap made bolts in the Dorman valve assembly kit have been known to break. Don’t know about the Gates. You’ll know they are not good quality if they are lightweight than the original Honda bolts.
I mean that TSB says 6 ftlb.. I ordered a Dorman 918-056
6 ft lbs is more in line with an 8mm bolt, But ok if the TSB said so. It is just pressing a rubber gasket.
Broken Dorman bolt here…
Well I'm not going to go further than the TSB after breaking the first ones, and my new precision torque wrench only goes to like 6.4 ftlb. At 182k miles I doubt that solenoid is original, and it wasn't really maintained at a dealer so the bolts likely may not be OEM either. Though they did say 10 on the head which is something Honda normally does. I only bought the Dorman because scamazon said I could pay and have it next day. Well today's that day and it's not shipped, so now I have to waste my time calling for a shipping refund and hopefully it shows up tomorrow.

That exact torque does apparently matter as well, given the number of people who have had issues with a CEL purely because the torque was wrong on those bolts.
I didn't get a cel with the old solenoid and ebay gaskets that didn't fit right and caused a slow leak, so it seems to be kinda random.
You may want to use a thread chaser (not a tap) to clean out the threads in the bolt holes. The 6 ft-lb torque spec is for clean threads, new fasteners, and lightly oiled threads. If you have any "gunk" in the bolt holes it's going to affect the torque and with a low torque spec it can throw it off by a significant percentage. The devil is in the details . . . .
The threads look pretty clean on the bolts that came out.

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That doesn't necessarily say much about the threads in the bolt hole. Using a thread chaser will also clean up any damage you may have done to the threads in the bolt hole. Any deformation in the thread profile is going to affect your torque. But, it's your car . . . . . .
I see no reason why I would have damaged a thread, the bolt went in and out it was never stripped never used an impact, it snapped because it was a thin weak bolt.
The threads were supporting the load it took to tensile fail the bolt. You can check by running the new bolts all the way in and out by hand; you'll be able to feel any places where the running torque may be higher. If it feels fine everywhere you are good; if you feel that it's a little harder to turn in some places then you should chase the threads.
But then I need some kind of thread chaser kit that has the exact width and thread size that will work for this?
Yes, if you need to chase threads. Here are typical values - you need to confirm. For 10mm hex head it is usually an M6 bolt. I'm guessing that bolt is coarse threads, not fine so the thread pitch is 1 mm.

So, you would need an M6x1 thread chaser. You can confirm this before ordering by trying an M6x1 nut on those bolts (just go to Lowe's, Home Depot, Ace, fastener store, etc and try one). You can also measure the pitch, outer (major) thread diameter, etc and look it up in a metric thread table.

Here is a set for M6x1 and M8x1.25. Amazon didn't list the thread pitch but Summit Racing did.
The bolts went and easily by hand so I didn't bother, maybe it was just severely over tightened last time. I am following the TSB torque as I install right now.
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