Timing Belt Info - Renewal
Article: Andrew Photos: none as yet


Heres how to change the ancillary belts and the timing belt.


The various socket and spanner sizes I used were:
For a PDF and detailed images of how to do this please download the PDF document HERE (926KB)

Make sure the engine is cold when doing this.
As with all jobs, if you dont feel comfortable changing timing belts then leave it to the professionals. It should be mentioned that this is a guide of how I replaced mine, others may differ. Goes without saying I hope that you take responsibility of the job and any consequences if you do this yourself.

If you have a need to do it, this job will be alot easier if you remove the radiator, although it can be done with it in situ, as I explain below. Just makes the job more fiddly and tricky.

1) Remove the batteries and trays and tape up the ends.

2) Remove the 4 viscous fan bolts, but leave the fan on the water pump for the time being.

3) Remove the power steering belt

4) Remove the air con pump by undoing the 4 retaining bolts. Once removed carefully prise the hosing out
of the retainers (on the front of the cam belt cover) and move the pump and hosing out of the way
(I placed mine on top of the rad). You may have to loosen the air con belt tensioner. Remember to
loosen the tensioner bolt (goes through the centre of the pulley) before trying to loosen the
tensioner.Be warned its a git to get to and you canonly get about 1/4 of a turn every time.

5) Loosen and slacken off alternator tensioner. Remove the bolt holding alternator in place (goes through
tensioner and into the alternator body).

6) Remove the aircon bracket/belt idler/alternator tensioner assembly (4 17mm bolts) and remove. This
gets you alot more room to play with.

7) Roll the alternator intowards the block and remove the belts.

8) Gently remove the viscous fan. You`ll have to manipulate and be a little forceful with it a bit to remove it from the car but it can be done as long as step 6 is complete.

9) Remove the water pump pulley

10) Remove all the belts from the lower harmonic damper/pulley and mark in some way so that you can put them back in the right order.

11) Automatics only need do this, manual owners can place the car into first and put the handbrake on to lock the motor.Tricky this bit. I managed to remove my starter motor and jam a screw driver into the ring gear, to prevent the motor from turning but there may well be a better way.
Get a 19mm socket and a driver (the longer the better, ie a torque wrench is good) and undo the bottom pulley bolt. It should be very tight (100+ lb/ft torque) so expect some fun.Remove the harmonic damper/pulley assembly.

12) Inspect the harmonic damper for signs of rubber
perishing or damage and replace.

**** Next steps only if replacing timing belt ****

13) Remove the water hosing across the timing belt cover. Try removing the 2 on the drivers side and then jaming them over the passenger side and turning them to face up to prevent all the radiator water escaping. This clears the timing belt cover so it can be removed.

14) Undo all the timing belt covers bolts and remove cover.

15) Very carefully turn the engine over (a socket on the camshaft pulley is fine, just go gentle!!) so that all the timing marks line up. NOTE: the camshaft timing mark is underneath (ie the fuel and bottom pulley timing marks (bottom pulley can be temporarily replaced or the keyway faces up when lined up) are all at 0 degrees or pointing up, whereas the camshaft timing mark is at 180 degrees or pointing down).

16) Once lined up, loosten cambelt tensioner and remove cam belt.

17) Check cambelt tensioner and check for play or noise in bearing. Replace it if and play is present.

18) Replace cambelt with new one. DO NOT turn the engine over whilst the cam belt is off. There is alittle play in moving the camshaft or the bottom pulley on its own, but go careful.Its not worth risking a bent valve!
Replacing the belt I found was a little frustrating and unless your lucky or have a method, put aside an hour or more to do this. I
found that if I lined all the marks up,and tried to replace the belt when I tensioned it, the lower pulley was always a tooth out.
Tensioning the belt is really your call. As a rule of thumb, the cambelt, on its longest travel should be able to be turned 90 degrees or about 10mm of deflection. This slack it to allow for the engine expansion when hot.
Just make sure the cambelt is tight enough to not jump a tooth, but also has some slack to allow forheat expansion. The belt will whine if it is too tight.

19) When cam belt has been replaced, turn engine over by hand a few times. Check the engine turns over without a great deal of force and timing marks line up every time they come around.Again, just not worth a bent valve or a hole in the piston to not check.

20) The rest of the rebuilding is a reverse of the removal process. One tip is to use nut lock on thelower pulley/harmonic damper when replacing. Stopsthe possibility of working loose.

On first start after replacement, just go easy dont rev the guts out of it and stand by the key, so that if something does happen, you can shut down the engine straight away and work out what happened.

This job took me about 4/5 hours to do. Someone with more suitable tools (I had a set of spanners and a socket set) and some more experience may be able to do a quicker job. My advice, just dont rush, check everything is tightened and check after a first run again. Its easy to forget a bolt or a nut that wasnt tightened.