Valve clearance on my Honda Civic engine needed checking so as per the Honda manual, I went ahead to do this critical piece of work.
Safety first as always. Handbrake up, the transmission in neutral, the steering turned fully to the left. There is no need to remove the left front wheel.
The tools used are;
1/2in drive Ratchet with 2 extensions
Feeler gauge set (0.007, 0.009, 0.0011 inch)
High temperature gasket maker safe for gasoline engines
Step 1: Remove the Valve Cover.
Step 2: Remove the Power Steering Pump and Timing Belt Upper Cover.
The pump is held by two 12mm bolts. The belt cover is held by two 10mm bolts.
With the belt exposed, it is a good opportunity to inspect the belt during the job as it is moved.
Step 3: Turn the Crankshaft Pulley.
To access the pulley nut, there is a maintenance hole built into the plastic guard under the engine.
As per the Honda Manual's instructions, get each cylinder to TDC to check/adjust valve clearances. The torque needed to turn the engine was surprisingly small. No Ratchet extension needed!
Step 4: Check, Adjust and Re-check the Valve Clearances.
Using the appropriate feeler gauges, I started with the intake valves:
0.007in will give a little drag.
0.009in cannot fit.
I used a 10mm spanner to slacken the holding nut and a flat blade screwdriver to turn the screw slightly. Once I had the correct drag on the 0.008in, I held the screw with the screwdriver and tightened the nut carefully. I re-checked the drag and once unchanged, I torqued the nut and checked the drag again.
For the exhaust valves:
0.009in will give a little drag.
0.0011in cannot fit.
Same procedure as the exhaust valves.
When cylinder 1 was completed, I rotated the crankshaft pulley 180degrees anticlockwise to get the camshaft pulley into the correct position (actually a quarter turn anticlockwise) for the next cylinder. This is a repetition for each cylinder.
I held each Feeler gauge by its side and carefully inserted it a few times into the valve clearance. The bigger or no go Feeler gauge size would only slightly fit it's head into the clearance but it cannot go in. It's important to not force the Feeler Guage into the clearances.
I used my handy under car roller which transforms into a chair. Being comfortable during this step is recommended.
It is mission critical to recheck with the feeler gauges each time the nut is tightened.
I tripled checked each valve. Once completed I rotated the Crankshaft again and brought each cylinder to TDC, again checking each valve clearance.
Step 5: Re-Installing the Timing Belt Cover, Valve Cover and Spark Plug Wires.
The spark plug wires and accelerator cad were easy to reinstall.
Step 6: Starting the Engine and Verifying Operation.
I intend to perform this valve clearance inspection once a year from now on. I am very pleased with this job!