How to Make Your Own Gaskets

Written by dan ferrell
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How to Make Your Own Gaskets
(Wikimedia Commons)

Intake and exhaust manifolds, exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) valves and other engine and vehicle system components require new gaskets after part service or replacement. However, there will be times when your auto parts outlet will not have the specific product you need. It is very common for those same stores to carry gasket paper, which you can use to make your own seal following these steps.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Gasket paper
  • Pencil
  • Utility knife
  • Ball peen hammer

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Place the component that needs the new seal over the sheet of gasket paper with the part's sealing surface against the paper. Use a workbench or some other suitable flat surface to work on.

  2. 2

    Trace the outer edge and bolt holes of the component over the gasket paper using a pencil, and then lift the component off the paper. If you cannot trace the bolt holes with the pencil because of the narrow space, follow the procedure described on steps 3 and 4; otherwise go to step 5.

  3. 3

    Cut the outlined form with a utility knife. Set the component on the table or workbench with the sealing surface facing up. Place the cut piece of gasket over the component, matching the component outside diameter to the outline of the paper.

  4. 4

    Hold the gasket paper firmly over the component. Lightly tap the paper using the ball side of a ball peen hammer to trace the outline of two bolt holes located at opposite ends on the component. Tap the paper with the hammer at a slight angle to make a good rounded dent on the paper, being careful not to nick or damage the component's mating surface. Cut out the two dents on the paper.

  5. 5

    Insert two mounting bolts through the cut out holes to hold the paper in place over the seal surface of the component. Using the same procedure described on step 4, trace the inside diameter of the component and the remaining bolt holes; then cut out the marked outlines on the paper.

  6. 6

    Use the appropriate gasket adhesive or sealer, if required, when mounting the component. Otherwise, you can apply a light coat of suitable grease on both sides of the new gasket surface. This will prevent the gasket from sticking to the sealing surfaces, making it easy to replace next time.

Tips and warnings

  • Before you install the new gasket, trace the outline of the seal on another piece of gasket paper so that you have a replacement ready to cut out when needed.

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