Oil control valves
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An introduction to oil control valves

Every engine that uses VVT relies on the oil control valve. Its primary duty is to regulate oil flow to the camshaft, and its secondary role is maintaining the smooth operation of the engine’s internal parts. Inevitably, using oil control valves will also result in higher engine performance, lower gas emissions from the vehicle, and greater fuel efficiency.

When it comes to regulating oil flow to the camshaft of an automobile engine, size matters little at all; oil control valves are tiny. They can be opened and shut to regulate oil flow and lubricate a camshaft.

Because of this, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise to learn that faulty oil control valves can have a devastating effect on an engine. Oil control valve failure prevents the engine from receiving the oil it needs to function properly.

Operation of an oil control valve

Now that you have a basic understanding of oil control valves, it’s time to dig deeper into how they function. You’ll have a better chance of knowing when they break down, giving you time to react quickly and effectively.

Connected directly to the ECM (engine control module) is the oil control valve in an engine. The oil control valve in an engine receives instructions from the engine control module (ECM) on how much oil to let into the camshaft with the help of oil valves at any given time.

In response to commands from the ECM, a valve that regulates the flow of oil to the camshaft opens or closes as necessary. All of this happens in a fraction of a second and maintains constant oil pressure in the engine.

Oil control valve replacement cost

A new oil control valve might set you back anywhere from $600 and over, but that’s not including labour. On average, you can expect to pay between $80 and $520 to replace your oil control valve. Prices for the component range from $50 to $210, with labour starting at $310.

Controlling oil flow: The oil control valve in action

Valve controls are utilised in various industrial settings, including water purification, electricity generation, food processing, oil and gas production, manufacturing like medical plastics manufacturers, irrigation, and fire protection.

The control valve manufacturer or provider is responsible for offering a control valve suitable for the customer’s needs. Some of the major industries that are dependent on oil control valves include:

1. The oil and gas sector

Valves play a crucial role in the oil and gas sector because they are an integral part of any piping system. They are employed in the crude oil refining process to help isolate and safeguard machinery, regulate flow rates, and guide and direct the process.

In the oil and gas business, these valves are used to regulate things like flow rate, temperature, and pressure. Simply put, they do their job by adapting the size of the flow passage in response to a signal from the controller that can be either electrical, hydraulic, or pneumatic. Because of their autonomous nature, these valves may be adjusted and monitored from afar without needing a human operator.

2. The petrochemical sector

Flow control valves play a crucial role in complicated petrochemical processes because of the need to maintain dynamic and rigorous control over many loops. This is important to ensure that the process as a whole performs as designed and yields the necessary output in a timely, high-quality manner.

How long do oil control valves typically function reliably?

Estimating the lifespan of pieces of equipment like teflon bellows or oil control valves might be difficult. It’s a challenge because such mechanical equipment is often changed even before a new one is needed.

Everything from the car you drive to how well you maintain your massive machinery plays a role. You never know when an oil control valve will fail; it could last your car’s or other machine’s lifetime or fail suddenly and without explanation.

That’s why it’s crucial that you keep an eye out for the warning signals that your oil control valves are about to fail. A car’s oil control valve is located deep within the engine, so you won’t have to deal with it frequently. However, there are indicators that you should be aware of that point to potential problems. You must watch for these symptoms to avoid driving an automobile with damaged oil control valves.


For every engine that employs variable valve technology, the oil control valve is an essential component. A single control valve will govern oil flow to a specific VVT hub to adjust the timing by changing the camshaft angle. The ECU sends electrical impulses to the OCV, telling it to change oil flow as necessary for the present driving conditions.


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