I just hate it when the valves on my jeep stick. I've notice it seems to happen when I leave the old girl sitting without much attention...like over a winter or longer!

I just hate it when the valves on my jeep stick. I’ve notice it seems to happen when I leave the old girl sitting without much attention…like over a winter or longer!

Dear Half-Mast,

In the past week we have
run into some trouble with
valves sticking on – 1/4-ton
jeeps. We tore a vehicle down
and found the exhaust valves
not only gummed up, but a
corrosive action had taken
place about half-way down
the valve stem causing a
severe pitting. There was
also considerable traces of
rust on the valve stem. The
condition was only prevalent
on the exhaust valves.
As a corrective measure, we
reseated and ground all
valves and thoroughly
cleaned up the valve guides,
removing all sludge and carbon
from the motor and
crankcase. We also checked
the motor thoroughly for water
leaks, but were unable to
find any. Upon completion of
this work, we assembled the
motor and as could be expected,
we had a very smooth
running motor.

We have come to the conclusion
that this condition
was due to the fact that the
1/4-ton jeeps are not permitted
to operate off the post and
are used only in short runs
around the post. This does
not permit them to attain
normal operating temperatures
– which undoubtedly
causes excessive crankcase
dilution and sludge and
creates the described condition.
We are wondering if you
have had any similar experiences
and if our diagnosis is
correct and what your recommendations
are in correcting
this trouble.
F. P. L.
Automotive Tech. Adviser

Dear F.P.L.,
You hit it on the head—cold
crankcases collecting sludge,
etc. – both Willys and Ford
seem to agree with you, because
both companies are
adding crankcase ventilating
systems to their 1/4-tons in
production (so far, it has not
been decided to issue kits for
field installation of the ventilating
system). Back in January,
we carried a description
of the ventilating system to
be installed in GMC’s which
should give you a rough idea
of what it ‘ll look like on the

However, if drivers are
properly trained, they will
bring the engine to operating
temperature before moving
their vehicle – just plain old
lst-echelon ‘Engine Warm-up’
will go a long ways towards
correcting your trouble.


From Military Maintenance for MB/GPW Jeeps 1941-45 which is available through booksellers everywhere or directly from the publisher.