Whether you're cracking a joke or popping the big question to your would-be wife, timing is everything. The same can also be said about the repair of your timing belt, which is crucial to the overall operation of your engine. Unfortunately, this part can wear out over time, hampering your engine's performance. That's why you should replace it as soon as it starts acting up. Lucky for you, replacing your busted timing belt isn't that difficult. With some elbow grease and the right tools, you'll have your new timing chain installed and ready to go in no time.
Difficulty level: Moderate
Things you'll need:
- Combination wrenches
- A socket set
- Torque wrench
- Harmonic balancer puller
- Three-jaw gear puller
- Gasket scraper
- Timing light
- Jack stands
- Silicone sealer
- New timing chain and gears
- Timing chain cover gasket set
- Drain pan
Step 1: Disconnect the negative terminal of your battery, remove the radiator cap, and drain the coolant into the drain pan.
Step 2: Remove the lower and upper radiator hoses, all the drive belts, the fan and fan clutch assembly, and any bracket attached to the water pump or front timing cover.
Step 3: Remove the harmonic balancer pulleys. Then use your harmonic balancer puller to remove the harmonic balancer itself.
Step 4: Remove the fuel pump, the attaching lines, and the front timing cover.
Step 5: Use a ratchet and socket to rotate the engine until the timing marks of the gears are aligned according to engine specs.
Step 6: Remove the camshaft bolts and the timing chain. Using your three-jaw gear puller, remove the crankshaft sprocket. Always replace sprockets when replacing your timing chain because these will likely be worn out like your old chain.
Step 7: Slide in the new crankshaft sprocket and make sure that the marks of the are facing outward. You may need to hammer the sprocket on. However, never hammer directly onto the sprocket. Instead, place a block of wood on it first.
Step 8: Install the new timing chain and camshaft sprocket. Keep the marks of the camshaft sprocket and the crankshaft sprocket aligned as your engine's specs indicate.
Step 9: Reinstall the camshaft sprocket bolts and use a thread-locking compound on the threads when installing the bolts.
Step 10: Drive out the old crankshaft seal using a hammer and punch.
Step 11: Turn over the cover and tap the new crankshaft seal into the timing cover. Coat the seal with oil before reinstalling.
Step 12: Reinstall the timing chain cover gasket and put some silicone sealer on the corners where the timing chain gasket and oil pan gasket meet.
Step 13: Reinstall the timing chain cover, harmonic balancer, bottom pulley(s), water pump, fuel pump, and other items mounted on the front of the engine. Also reattach the fan clutch, radiator and heater hoses, and belts.
Step 14: Refill the coolant, then reconnect the battery.
Step 15: Double-check all connections, start the engine to check for dips or leaks, and reset your ignition timing light if necessary. If everything checks out, then you're all set!