Valve Cover Gasket Vs Head Gasket: Reach The Latest Info

The valve cover gasket and the head gasket are on the upper section of an automobile’s engine. Also, both of them keep some similar parts besides some points of difference.

A clear breakdown of the valve cover gasket vs head gasket below can help you understand and maintain your vehicle wisely, which prolongs your car life expectancy.

In this context, we will walk through some key sections to clarify the key difference between these gaskets and some symptoms to find a faulty component.

To reach the thoughtful detail, let’s dive into it with us now! 

What Is The Difference Between The Valve Cover Gasket Vs Head Gasket?

Valve Cover Gasket Vs Head Gasket

As mentioned earlier, both head gasket vs valve cover gasket have a common point of location.

Yet there are several distinct characteristics in terms of material, cost and replacement difficulty, lifespan, and fitting location.


A valve cover gasket (or called rocker cover one) appears commonly on the latest engines, which belongs to one of the simplest gaskets. This type is produced from silicone rubber.

A head gasket valve often comes with a more complicated configuration and includes an amount of thin narrow steel coats linked together.

These layers might be made from graphite or copper, yet steel material is used the most.

The outer coats of this kind of covering are normally covered with a Viton layer, a rubberized material that aims to boost the seal with the cylinder head and engine block.


A head gasket cover is more likely to last at least a 100,000-mile journey for many years. Due to their rubber material and design, it is no wonder that they crack and harden over time.

In the meantime, a valve head gasket is engineered to extend the lifetime of an automobile. Steel, modern layered cylinder head gaskets are fairly resilient.

They should never go bad unless the cylinder head wraps or cracks and the motor is constantly working hot.

Cost and Replacement Difficulty

It isn’t hard to change for a head gasket valve cover, and often be subject to how many coils of ignition and other hoses or wiring need to be taken off first.

A new cover head gasket might cost around $50 to $150 to purchase and around $150 and $400 to pay a mechanic’s wage.

A head gasket renewal is an expensive and complicated job. It is regarding removing a lot of components consisting of the cylinder head.

This display is often only carried out by an experienced mechanic, which might cost you approximately from $1,500 to $2,500 (including parts and labor)  

Fitting Location

A head cover gasket is on the upper part of its cylinder head. And, as the name says, seals this valve cap onto the motor.

It’s a thin covering that works round out on the edges of the lower surface of this valve cover.

A head gasket is tightly wedged between the engine block and the cylinder head.

It’s a flat, large one that coats the upper part of this motor block with cut-out lines for the various oil, cylinders, and coolant channels.

A Defective Head Gasket Vs A Defective Valve Cover Gasket: Key Symptoms

Symptoms Of defective  Valve rocker GasketSymptoms of A defective Head Gasket
Lacking engine oil – oil leaks out of a valve rocker gasket will result in a decrease in the engine oil degrees.
Inadequate coolant levels – Once a head gasket leaks out, it is pretty sure that the coolant level is gradually losing by merging into the combustion chambers and the engine oil.
The odor of burning engine oil through vents – Oil leaks out of the gasket, which might drib and drab down to the engine’s side where the hot exhaust pipes are.White smoke from the emission exhaust – When the coolant comes into the engine cylinders, it would be on fire, which would set off continual white smoke from this exhaust.
Dried oil build-up around the gasket – Leaking oil from the cover will normally house the upper part of this motor and dry off, leaving a dirty, flaky residue.Brown engine oil – When a gasket blows, the coolant gets into the engine oil, creating a thick brown mixture.
Oil can get into the spark plugs – when oil leaks leak out of the valve gasket much enough, it will find a way to run down around the upper part of spark plugs Engine overheating – If the loss of coolant happens so fast due to the defective head gasket, the engine can be heated too much.

How To Check For A Valve Cover Gasket or Head Gasket Leak?

There are four ways to inspect a leak in valve cover gasket or head gasket: Checking the oil and coolant level, white smoke, the engine oil condition, and the engine compression.

The Coolant And Oil Levels

Warm up by a visual inspection of the coolant and oil levels to find whether they have any signs of loss of level or not.

Topping them up is also a way to check if the levels that release improperly or not. Leaking oil from the valve gasket will be slower for some weeks than the other one.

White Smoke

In terms of this sign, there are two factors that help you check your gasket.

Firstly, you find white smoke continuously released from the exhaust system when driving. Or else, you can still find some smoke when the motor cools down.

However, if the white smoke goes away as soon as the engine starts, this white smoke doesn’t stem from the error of the gasket.

The Condition (Of The Engine Oil)

Another way you can take to find out a faulty head gasket or valve cover gasket is the condition of the coolant in its engine oil.

You can use a dipstick or remove the filler cover to check the condition of your vehicle’s engine oil.

When you realize some liquid is light brown and its texture is milky, you can be sure that this engine oil is poisoned from a poor cap.

In addition, to confirm the error certainly, you should drain the engine oil fully from its engine.

Check The Engine Compression

Inspecting the compression of every cylinder is a wise way to confirm a defective head gasket completely.

Most up-to-date petrol motors typically have a pressure index of over 100 PSI and a smaller pressure reading than a 10% gap in engine compression between cylinders.

Yet, a 20% difference in the aspect is acceptable if you own a high-mileage car.

Wrap Up

How To Check For A Valve Cover Gasket or Head Gasket Leak?

Have you reached your answer for your curiosity earlier about the valve cover gasket vs head gasket so far? Once you still stay with us until these bottom lines, we bet your reply completely is yes.

Now, clarifying two of these gaskets is no longer a challenge for you.

Also, thanks for this; you learn how to check, find some signs of leaking from this component as soon as possible, then have an appropriate solution to fix that soon, ensuring a safe journey for you in coming trips.

Now is the right time to express our thanks to your company and patience in accompanying us until now.

Don’t skip sharing this blog with others who have the same interest as you.

See you, and hope you have a good implementation on your vehicle in the best way.

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