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Valve guide seals

 
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Old 07-15-2010, 06:12 PM
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Valve guide seals

I'm looking into buying a 95 prelude from a friend. Its got an oil light on solid and no major leaks but the pump was replaced about 10k miles ago. I found out today that apparently when the oil pump was replaced 10k ago, they found that the gears were in bad shape. In the oil filter they found a small plastic piece the size of a pellet from a pellet gun. Also, under the valve cover a small, almost half circle shaped plastic piece was found. It was about the size of a valve guide seal. The first thing that came to my mind was that I'd definitely have to replace the valve guide seals and possibly the pump again. (I don't know whether the sending unit was checked out or not.)

What I was wondering was how would valve guide seals come apart in this way? Timing belt slip, or is this just generally what happens when seals aren't replaced? I know the kid drove pretty hard, but I'm just curious as to what I'd be getting into if I bought this car.

Just a little more background about the car...

I have to do a compression and leak test to find out whether its gonna need a rebuild or not, it has 188k miles on the stock engine. I'm thinking it may need a rebuild. The trans is in pretty good condition, but he doesn't know when or if the clutch was replaced. Interior and body are in really good condition, and this is what really sparked my interest being as there's no rust.

He's willing to let it go for 1500, but that seems a bit high for all the care it needs. I may be wrong about the price being high, just curious on what you all think about price and the above question about the valve guide seals.
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Old 07-15-2010, 08:39 PM
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Re: Valve guide seals

Under any other conditions, 188k isn't anything to be scared of (although it should have had the timing belt recently replaced -- 90k interval). My '92 has 240k, with the first 13 years of that seeing 2-3 autocrosses a month. While I'm certain the valve guide seals aren't sealing as well as they used to, they're not coming apart -- I've never had the head off.

Any time you have an engine that's been oil-starved, though, you have to wonder. Especially B21As and any H-series -- they all have FRM-reinforced aluminum cylinders, so no oil really can screw things up. Unless you can open up the engine and verify the condition of the innards, I'd count on needing to rebuild or replace the engine.
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:21 PM
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Re: Valve guide seals

Thanks man, I appreciate your input. I got the price down to 700, which I think is more reasonable considering the questionable condition. I would think the oil filter would have picked up whatever the plastic was before going to the pump, but who knows.

Has anyone heard of valve guide seals coming apart?
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