VCT Replacement


NHRA21
02-23-2008, 01:51 PM
I have a '98 Escort ZX2 an it sounds like the VCT clutch is bad. The car still runs, but when you rev it up it sounds like a bag of marbles from that location. I am kind of new to these engines and am looking for some information. I was hoping to find a used unit, or even better, the whole exhaust cam, but I have had no luck so far. My next idea is to eliminate the VCT and install a normal cam wheel. I don't know what effect this will have on the engine tho. The third option it to see if I can get one from Ford. I have heard that they are about $350, so I am guessing that they are still available. Can anyone give me a hand in figuring out the best move to make?

Thanks in advance.

AltecZX2
02-23-2008, 08:53 PM
No such thing as a VCT clutch, its a silonoid.
If you eliminate the VCT you will need a SCT tune to eliminate teh wrror codes you get and to make the car run right. HTe unit is not part of the cam , so changing out the cam alone will not help you. The VCT system doesnt typicly go bad unless you are running oil that to heavy what are you using? Yes htey are expencive from ford....but with out one you cant pass emissions.

NHRA21
02-23-2008, 10:56 PM
The last owner had an oil leak, so he was putting cheap crap oil in it. He said he was loosing around one quart a day. Because of this, he put Slick 50 in the engine. Between running it low and the Slick 50, I think this is where it met its end.
I thought the part that did the actual retarding of the cam was bolted to the end of the camshaft....

AltecZX2
02-24-2008, 02:39 AM
The last owner had an oil leak, so he was putting cheap crap oil in it. He said he was loosing around one quart a day. Because of this, he put Slick 50 in the engine. Between running it low and the Slick 50, I think this is where it met its end.
I thought the part that did the actual retarding of the cam was bolted to the end of the camshaft....


its actually bolted into the head and the cam slides in place...sounds like thats what killed it. the VCT is very sensative to oil as it relies on oil pressure to function.

NHRA21
02-24-2008, 12:39 PM
Ok, I don't want to doubt you, but I have spend a lot of time looking at the Alldata information for this unit. From what I have found there is the solinoid, and that is the part that has the wires running to it. Then there is the oil control solenoid flange, and that is bolted to the head. The third part is the cam gear, and this has the VCT unit in the center. From what I understand, the computer sends a signal to the solinoid to retard the cam. The solonoid opens a oil passage that supplies oil pressure to the VCT unit in the center of the cam gear that causes it to retard.
If I am wrong on this, please let me know.
The part that I think I need to replace is the VCT unit in the center of the cam gear, as this seems to be where the noise is coming from. From the disassembly guide, there is a torx bolt in the center of the VCT unit that comes out. Then there is a reverse torx bolt in the center of the VCT that comes out and the VCT comes off the cam.
One of the interesting things I noticed last night when I was running the engine without the valve cover was that after the engine was shutdown, oil came out from the backside of the oil control solenoid flange. I am guessing that that is not normal....

AltecZX2
02-27-2008, 05:29 PM
you ran the engine with no valve cover..........



but yes that how teh VCT works.

NHRA21
02-28-2008, 09:41 AM
Yeah, it gets a little messy when you do it for more than a few seconds, but it allowed me to see what was going on. Do you know if the oil control solenoid flange should be weeping oil on shutdown?

Acidbath
03-11-2008, 05:32 AM
I'm getting ready to do a minor rebuild / tune up of my friends zx2. The only code was something related to the VCT. I wonder if him not changing his oil has gummed up the insides of it. Anyone had luck / success cleaning these out in a parts washer? I've had lots of luck on the IAC's on my SHO cleaning the gunk out of those. Granted its not swimming in dirty oil either.

Either way, his dosent make any noise like your saying, so now I wonder how many ways those things can go wrong? I'm new to VCT's sorry.. :)

Add your comment to this topic!