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Q: Variable valve timing solenoid

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Engine light came on car (2008 ford expedition el 5.4L) had little to no hesitation, oil pressure was fine, temps were good just a check engine l was near a pep boys, took it right there after they checked it out, they said it was a variable timing solenoid but the mech noticed the passenger side valve cover had a crack near the front of the valve cover which had led to a little bit of oil to come out, they said i would need another engine, my original engine just turned 124,000 miles on it , and all maintenance is up to date as well as all scheduled oil changes.

My car has 124000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hi there. From the description you have pro...

Hi there. From the description you have provided, Check Engine Light on, being told VVT (variable valve timing) solenoid is bad, cracked valve cover, and now needs an engine is all questionable. Ford and their "5.4L VVT issues". I have seen all aspects of failure in this particular system.

Why you have been told you need an engine, for a cracked valve cover is somewhat confusing, unless the timing chain caused the crack. Timing chain(s) and guide(s) replacement can be an expensive repair, and pros and cons need to be considered on an engine with 124,000 miles. Typically, noise from the cam phaser (clacking) and rough idle are associated with a VVT failure.

Possible causes for this is low engine oil pressure, one or both VVT solenoids failing, or one or both cam phasers failing.

There are necessary diagnostic steps required to confirm the fault(s). I recommend having your vehicle’s Check Engine Light fully diagnosed in person to pinpoint the problem and move forward with necessary repairs.

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