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Discussion Starter #1
What is average cost to replace valve seals on 1972 350 engine .
Blue smoke when going up hills seems to smoke from right side .
Trying not to replace total engine now
 

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You are right on the mark, blue smoke likely is an indicator of leaking valve seals. Does it emit blue smoke at start up? Before proceeding and to determine the condition of the motor, in general, I suggest doing a compression check. Basically, there are two ways to replace valve seals: keep the heads on the engine or remove them. If you opt to remove the heads, another consideration is to do a valve job.

Lastly, here's another suggestion and could be less expensive: look into replacing the heads with an aftermarket set.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Only smokes when putting any pressure driving on flat service no smoke
Changing heads good suggestion had not thought of that
 

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Basically, it all depends on your budget and whether you are able and willing to do the work yourself. Swapping heads is not that big of a job.
 

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A compression test as mentioned will assist with the course of action. If I were looking to ONLY replace the valve seals on my SBC, I would leave the heads on.
 

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Now, if rings are bad, that is a completely different story! Work required on bottom end of engine dictates a different solution. Since Vol64 wants to avoid replacement now, if only issue with engine is white smoke and it runs fine, then just live with it until later.
 

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if you get the big puff of blue/white smoke in the morning / engine cold ??
that's classic valve seals,, or more smoke on de-cell down a hill..

what do the plugs look like ??

x2 on the Compression or Leak-Down Test..

x2 just changing valve seals is done on the car..
takes 4hrs or so, depending your tool kit,,
and how hard it is to get the valve cover off..
the seals are cheap, less than 10-20$ for good umbrella seals ..
 

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Transmission modulator? Just one other thought if 72 has one. Had a 77 do the same thing. Easy check though, pull the vacuum line coming up from the trans and if it's wet inside start there. If not, back to the valve stem seals! Good luck!

Joe
 
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