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UPDATE!

So I ordered parts from scuderiacarparts.com out of the UK in late February. Despite saying that the parts would be available within 2 weeks, I didn't get the parts for SIX weeks! I've used them in the past, and they were slow to ship last time as well. Luckily, I have 3 other cars to use. Arg, anyway, saved a ton on the parts compared to dealer, even when including the shipping cost from UK.

Total parts and shipping: $395.34
I ordered two solenoids (only one was not working, replaced the working one as PM), 2 solenoid gaskets, 8 spark plug gaskets and 2 valve cover gaskets.

Taking off the cowling, wiper motor/blades, taking out the ignition coils, unhooking various tubes and the fuel injector cables were a pain. Getting to all 14 valve cover bolts (on each side!) was also a pain. Took off the valve covers, replaced the solenoids, inserted the gaskets, used Permatex "The Right Stuff" as additional seal on the valve cover gaskets. Put it all back together and....voila! Car runs like a dream, no annoying rattle at any time (startup, during deceleration, etc.).

It's probably an 8 hour job, start to finish.

For the record, my car is a 2007 QP Automatica wet sump.
Great work!!! Love to hear DIY stories!

Will using Permatex help with the seeping valve cover gaskets? I've never used the stuff, but I am about to perform a similar service on my dry sump car. I have new gaskets but I haven't decided whether or not to use an additional sealant. Anyone with advice on this would help!
 

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I know that a lot of folks use Permatex for VCGs on other cars; I figured it couldn't hurt. It's oil resistant and high temp resistant. At NAPA it was $14.99 or so.
 
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Technically, on a car engine you either use sealant or a gasket, but not both...It generally doesn`t help and makes a mess..The VC gaskets leak because they get hard and brittle so sealer won`t really help that...You do need a spot where the VC, front cover, and head meet..It also helps to wipe a little on the half moon as they shrink and can start to weep...It is better to use 3M spray glue to glue the gasket to the cover so it does not fall off during installation... Jason
 

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I also have a rattle on start up, just for clarification how do you test or prove that the solenoid are good or faulty?

Cheers

Scott
 

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Is the Variator issue mostly the 4.2 V8 or the 4.7 affected as well?
Reading conflicting information in this forum...
 

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No conflicts, all are prone.
Dry sumps (F1 gearbox, red heads) area all prone in the QP. More expensive Ferrari parts and the cars have gradual onset of startup rattle.
Wet sumps (blue heads, automatica) are all prone also. 2007-2008 are especially prone as they do not have cam cap updates. All not updated cam caps are sent off for machining of the one-way valve during the replacement. It helps but doesn't completely immunize the car to variator failure. The wet sumps have a more sudden onset with loud start up rattle developing quickly.
The two cars have different parts with different problems, so please be sure to understand this before listening to any advise or case studies. That is the root of all confusion pertaining to variators.
 

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No conflicts, all are prone.
Dry sumps (F1 gearbox, red heads) area all prone in the QP. More expensive Ferrari parts and the cars have gradual onset of startup rattle.
Wet sumps (blue heads, automatica) are all prone also. 2007-2008 are especially prone as they do not have cam cap updates. All not updated cam caps are sent off for machining of the one-way valve during the replacement. It helps but doesn't completely immunize the car to variator failure. The wet sumps have a more sudden onset with loud start up rattle developing quickly.
The two cars have different parts with different problems, so please be sure to understand this before listening to any advise or case studies. That is the root of all confusion pertaining to variators.
So, 2009+ have cam cap updates but the Variator will still most likely fail in the future?
 

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So, 2009+ have cam cap updates but the Variator will still most likely fail in the future?
I can't say it "most likely" will fail, but I wouldn't rule it out.

Remember the variator issue afflicts many cars, just under different names. Alfas, Fords, etc. I think, however, when it comes to premature wear, most of the issues were addressed with the updated caps. And, for the record, I am not sure when the factory started installing the update - 2009, 2010, etc. Maybe there were additional improvements in the 4.7. I do know the issue has happened in newer cars (even the new 2014+ cars!), but the update certainly lightens the risk.
 

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I can't say it "most likely" will fail, but I wouldn't rule it out.

Remember the variator issue afflicts many cars, just under different names. Alfas, Fords, etc. I think, however, when it comes to premature wear, most of the issues were addressed with the updated caps. And, for the record, I am not sure when the factory started installing the update - 2009, 2010, etc. Maybe there were additional improvements in the 4.7. I do know the issue has happened in newer cars (even the new 2014+ cars!), but the update certainly lightens the risk.
I wonder what the failure rate is by year. It would be valuable info for people shopping.
I think a high mile, Variator serviced QP5 would be a great buy at this point if the price is right.
 

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I wonder what the failure rate is by year. It would be valuable info for people shopping.
I think a high mile, Variator serviced QP5 would be a great buy at this point if the price is right.
Not sure, but he 2007-2008 Automaticas have the highest failure rate. I'm thinking the early dry-sumps are next in line, then followed by the facelifted cars.
 

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Not sure, but he 2007-2008 Automaticas have the highest failure rate. I'm thinking the early dry-sumps are next in line, then followed by the facelifted cars.
Another question, how many miles does it take for these variators to fail? I've read it even happens to low mileage cars.

Having said that, can a car not have the problem if it hasn't surfaced in Xx,xxx amount of miles?
 
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On the wet sump cars it can pop up really at anytime so it is hard to say...I know it seems like every car has that problem, but I work on cars daily that have the older style variators and are fine..I didn't even do a set of wet sump variators all of last year...Car forums make everything seem worse as nobody post on a car forum to report perfectly running cars generally...Jason
 

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On the wet sump cars it can pop up really at anytime so it is hard to say...I know it seems like every car has that problem, but I work on cars daily that have the older style variators and are fine..I didn't even do a set of wet sump variators all of last year...Car forums make everything seem worse as nobody post on a car forum to report perfectly running cars generally...Jason
Thanks for the input. I wish there was a way to see the failure rates of each year and engine type so buyers can make the best decision and know what they're getting into...

To reiterate what you said about wet sump cars, they are less likely to fail and if they do, parts are cheaper and easier to do?
 
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The dry sump cars don't seem to have many issues...Dry sump cars are F1 cars....The Automatic cars are the ones that seem to rattle and that was only for a few years until they updated some parts...This forum is filled with people getting them mixed up and now the thing is a hot mess...Jason
 
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