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June 7, 1999

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:102 E81151


TARIFF NO.: 8481.80.9015

Mr. Michael J. Walsh
Ford Motor Company
17101 Rotunda Drive
P.O. Box 6089 MD-654
Dearborn, Michigan 48121

RE: The tariff classification of a positive crankcase ventilation (PCV) valve from Japan.

Dear Mr. Walsh:

In your letter dated April 1, 1999 you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of Ford Motor Company.

The item in question is described as an automotive PCV valve identified by Ford Engineering part number BP05-13890 and by Ford Service part number FOCZ-6A666-A. Descriptive information and representative illustrations were submitted.

The PCV valve is used in positive crankcase ventilation systems to control the recirculation of pollutants from the crankcase into the air induction system of an internal combustion engine. Generally, PCV valves are designed as one-way valves and may feature either a fixed or variable orifice. Based on the information submitted with your request, the PCV valve in question is a variable-orifice flow control valve.

In a variable-orifice PCV valve the flow of gases through the valve is automatically controlled by an internal mechanism which opens and closes in response to changes in intake manifold vacuum. When vacuum is high, such as when the engine is at idle, the valve mechanism closes, reducing the size of the passageway through the valve and limiting the flow of crankcase gases to the intake manifold. When the engine is accelerated, or otherwise heavily loaded, manifold vacuum decreases and the valve opens and increases the flow of crankcase gases to the manifold. In a fixed-orifice PCV valve the flow of gases through the valve is simply metered by the constriction imposed by the fixed orifice, not by a valve mechanism.

In addition to metering the flow of gases, both the variable-orifice and the fixed-orifice PCV valves control the direction of flow. The valve mechanisms are designed to only allow gases to flow from the crankcase to the manifold. Should pressure develop in the manifold, the valves function as check valves, automatically closing to prevent a reverse flow of gas.

In a fixed-orifice PCV valve the valve mechanism is designed to simply prevent the reverse flow of gases through the valve. Such valves are considered to be check valves, provided for eo nomine in subheading 8481.30 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS).

The valve in question is a variable-orifice PCV valve. The internal mechanism of the valve, in addition to preventing reverse flow, is designed to automatically meter the flow of crankcase gas in response to changes in manifold vacuum. The subject valve is not simply a check valve, but a regulator valve for controlling the variables of gas flow within the PCV system of an engine.

The applicable subheading for the variable-orifice PCV valve will be 8481.80.9015, HTSUS, which provides for regulator valves, self-operating, for controlling variables such as flow. The rate of duty will be 2 percent ad valorem.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Kenneth T. Brock at 212-637-7026.


Robert B. Swierupski

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