I was told that my cars rocker arm control valve is damaged. How serious is this? Can I keep driving this car for a little while?

I had an issue with the car back in January, while driving it sometimes it would feel like it was struggling to move. I parked it somewhere and when I came back it would not start.

After having a family friend fix it, fast forward to last week I took my car to get serviced and I was told my rocker arm control was not in good condition. I never had any real issues with the car since I started driving it in June, except for the fact that once in a while when I try starting the car it shakes a too much before it starts officially

What usually happens in the worst case scenario? And can I still drive this car around for now? In short distances?

8 Answers

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  • Fred
    Lv 7
    4 months ago

    I have never heard of that part. I would get a 2nd opinion as it sounds dodgy to me.

  • don r
    Lv 7
    4 months ago

    You need a real mechanic to look at it. The timing gears and chain/belt control the valves and if that's the problem it needs to be mechanically fixed, especially before it gets worse. If you check the ignition timing and it's wrong, I'd guess the timing belt slipped or broke.

  • zipper
    Lv 6
    4 months ago

    You can drive it after you get it fixed. Now it will only make things worse and result in more and larger repairs being needed, may be even a new engine. GET IT FIXED!

  • 4 months ago

    Rocker arm control valve? What's that? I've been a back yard mechanic for several years and have never heard of that. Anything having to due with the rocker arms, push rods or valves can be serious.

    • falconry2
      Lv 7
      4 months agoReport

      Variable valve timing and computers in everything keeps me working on older stuff. Search "Ford VVT Solenoid" or "Ford 5.4 3 cam issues", "BMW VANOS issues" for just a taste of juicy badness from too many engineers and not enough mechanics designing things.

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  • 4 months ago

    Cam advance mechanisms go bad when the oil isn't change every 3,000 miles. You also need to keep the oil level topped up near the upper dipstick mark.

    Have you done tune up already?

    Source(s): Mitsubishi Master Tech
  • JetDoc
    Lv 7
    4 months ago

    Drive it to a different mechanic and ask again what the problem is... The guy you've been talking to is trying to rip you off.

  • Anonymous
    4 months ago

    If you are talking about the VVT or variable valve timing servo control, you will need to fix it ASAP.

  • 4 months ago

    Inside engine heads, there are intake and exhaust valves that are actuated by the cam directly or through push rods depending on designs. The cam action opens the valves to allow fuel/air in and exhaust out. The springs apply the return tension to the valves to close them as the cam rotation cycles through so (hopefully) the valves don't hit the top of the piston(s) when the pistons are at the top of there stroke. With a bad spring(s) there is less compression during the entire cycle, there can be excessive burning, carbon build-up, and more issues. Plus you risk hitting the piston and bending a valve or holing the piston and dynamiting the engine completely. This is where you have options though, you HAVE to get the spring(s) replaced, BUT is it worth looking at a cam and spring swap at the same time for better performance or pulling the head and porting it along with the springs/cam options. You "could" consider a new head, sending yours to a machine shop or get an aftermarket system. Downside "can" be putting more stress on the low end of the engine, obviously will need a new gasket set, etc.

    So, the worst case is destroying your engine, especially if it's an interference type to start, would be similar to breaking a timing belt then. But yeah, don't be running it far if at all and NO high RPMs at all. The ONLY way I would even suggest that is with a NON-Interference engine, so if the spring let go it won't cause deeper damage. Best advise is sideline it now and get it fixed.

    EDIT: DUUH, I forgot to include that BMW with VANOS and Ford with VVT solenoids and cam phasers and some Honda valve systems DO control the valve timing or positioning or what opens up on multi-cam systems, so the actual Rocker arm or assembly can be detented or advanced. Still need to fix it, with the Ford truck 5.4 3 cam heads you can test the solenoids at least by just unplugging them and they default into a non-advanced mode.

    • Geo
      Lv 6
      4 months agoReport

      They don't understand this and probably don't care.

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