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Old 06-10-2009, 08:43 PM
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What do I take to the machine shop for a valve job?

Hi, I have a 97' camaro rs convertible. It has a 3800 v6 engine, and currently it has a problem with cylinder #4 misfiring. I took it into an auto shop and the mechanic did a compression and leak test. It had failed on that cylinder at only 20% compression. I do believe it passed the leak test though.

Anyways, the mechanic had recommended that I get a full valve job on the car. He had quoted me $1,500 for the job including parts. He told me most of that cost was labor, and since that is a little too pricey for me, I decided I want to do it myself. Now I had called the machine shop and asked them how much it would cost for a valve job and they had quoted me $120, much more affordable, but I assume being so cheap, that I would have to remove the valves myself.

Now I am a novice at auto-repair and such but I was wondering what exactly I need to take to the machine shop? do they just need the valves themselves? (can they even be removed or do you just take the whole engine?) or do I take the whole engine? or what? Basically I am asking what the machine shop would expect me to have done/taken out when I ask for a valve job.

Thanks in advance,


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Old 06-10-2009, 09:09 PM
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Bring the assembled head to the shop. GET NEW SPRINGS.

I'm not so sure the compression problem will be solved with a valve job, but, it's your money.

Make sure it's not rings or something else. If you don't have $1500 you won't have $2000 if it's the rings.
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Old 06-10-2009, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by panzercannon01
mechanic had recommended that I get a full valve job on the car.
This could be in addition to other work that he thinks is needed.

You need to get further into diagnosing the actual problem, me thinks.
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Old 06-11-2009, 04:58 AM
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I am guessing the shop gave you a price for just the valve job and nothing else. You need to take the complete set of heads to the machine shop. Tell him or her exactly what you have found so far. Let them dis-assemble them and call you with the results. If nothing is found in the heads then there is another issue.

I would think that you are going to get the best part of $500 in those heads to do the complete job.

If you only asked about a valve job thats all they priced, but there are other cost.

These are my prices, but prices can take a big swing depending on the shop and where you live.

Dis-assemble and hot tank $40.00
Mag check for cracks $50.00
Economy valve job $125.00
Surface heads $80.00
re-assemble, set-up springs, etc $75.00

Then you have any needed parts,seals,springs, locks etc.

Also they might need guide work, that's additional money.

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