When installing new gaskett's do you need to use a sealer?
The Right Stuff by Permatex. You do not need a gasket for most parts. You can use gasket or not and it still works.
Never tried The Right Stuff as I don't recall seeing it on the shelves at my local automotive store. I have used other Permatex products like High Tack and High Temp black RTV. My preference is for the RTV. If you choose to use a sealer, just make sure the gasket surfaces are spotlessly clean. Other wise they may not seal successfully...particularly when using RTV.
Kinda depends too on what gasket you are talking about. Head gasket? I would only use the copper spray stuff, in fact just did last week when I put a new H.Gasket on my '12. Works great. Oil pan gasket? Like Kevin, I use the black RTV, if I'm not mistaken, there's two varieties of that. I get the version that has the highest oil resistance. And once putting pan gaskets back together with it, I learned from my expert engine man to leave it sit overnight before putting oil back in the engine.
Right Stuff is good stuff for sure, but it's a bit pricey. I have a small frost crack under the water jacket of my '13 that is literally sealed up with it and a piece of brass shim stock, topped off with JB weld, and I've put almost 2,000 miles on it the last 19 months with no issues. Just my thoughts.
I need to put the inspection plate back on my pan. I've got the gasket, and plan to use one of the Permatex products for a sealer. I've also read a lot and will probably do the thin cotton string coated in Permatex for the bolt threads.
My question - how do I prepare a classically oily part of the engine for a sealer / gasket? Do I need to work very hard to de-grease? If so, any degreaser ok?
Wipe with lacquer thinner to degrease.
If you're as slow as I am, The Right Stuff is the wrong stuff. It sets up too fast for me. I use Ultra Black. For head gaskets, Copper Coat.
When installing a head gasket, pay attention to the water hole sizes at the ends. It's very easy to get the thing on backwards.
I LOVE lacquer thinner! Its my choice of degreasers
I like the right stuff for most general needs if not using a gasket, trying to deal with rough surfaces that I cannot really fix easily or just trying to get out of Mexico. I find it is lessor known by car guys for some reason. For some heavy equipment mechanics I work around, it is always on the truck. Very forgiving to less than desirable conditions, though as Steve indicates it sets quicker than others. I like it for its ability to adhere and seal as well a it is black. Just picky sometimes about seeing blue, orange and clear coming out of mated surfaces. Only use the caulk gun type if you consider it. Other specific gaskets or applications, don't use it. Use what is specified if critical. Other products work just fine as well. Just a preference and opinion.
You find with experience and searching the forum that most guys really like the Ultra Black better than the Right stuff. The working time is much longer for the Ultra. It's not the same as the old RTV and doesn't peel off.
Just CLEAN with solvent and apply and let it sit overnight. The more expensive right Stuff can be put into service immediately.
The Ultra has many uses as an adhesive as well. ie... gluing on an oil seal to the front engine cover or patching a tear on the seat cover.
It's really amazing stuff.
Thanks for all the great info guys,