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    Thread: Ultimate Timing Belt DIY!

    1. Member toby lawrence's Avatar
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      01-09-2012 12:24 AM #676
      Basically what MechEngg said. The hydraulic tensioner is a hydraulic unit that, over time, loses its hydraulic "power" and lets the belt slack up, causing it to prematurely skip teeth and in turn smash valves into your pistons. The manual tensioner uses an old-school 16V design (I believe) where a manual lobe is turned to apply proper tensioning and is then torqued in place to hold at that angle.

      The IE kit, plus the manual tensioner tool, is a little more than the "all-in-one" kits from ECS or MJM... but you'll never have a weak hydraulic tensioner and it will be better-than-OEM parts. Assuming you do your due diligence of checking the belt tension, which is easy, you'll have a trouble-free timing belt experience.

      IE kit w/ pump (06A block): http://www.intengineering.com/Integr...27074-1-2.html
      Tensioner tool: http://www.intengineering.com/Mechan...68569-1-2.html

      You'll also want to pick up the motor mount bolts for the passenger side.... altogether the manual kit, done right, comes out to like $320 - $340 depending on whether you get the motor mount bolts locally or shipped from an online store.

      In the end, it's up to you on what you want to do. The OEM tensioner works good for a lot of people, but some people have had bad failures. If we replaced every piece that has ever, even if only once, failed terribly... we'd have replaced every part in our cars by now. You should be fine with either kit... it just depends on how much you want to spend to do this job and what you think your car is worth. Whatever the choice, replacing the belt is a good thing.
      science: it's for real.

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      01-09-2012 12:27 AM #677
      Quote Originally Posted by PD Performance View Post
      I never use the flywheel especially.....your method does work but is not as reliable as using the actual crank. No need to even mark anything
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    3. Member bboy_jon's Avatar
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      01-09-2012 12:56 AM #678
      interesting, I will have to look into it more. For the hydraulic tensioner, to get proper tension in the belts is just a matter of properly torquing the nut to 25nm? Or am I missing something?

    4. Member MechEngg's Avatar
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      01-09-2012 01:11 AM #679
      Quote Originally Posted by bboy_jon View Post
      interesting, I will have to look into it more. For the hydraulic tensioner, to get proper tension in the belts is just a matter of properly torquing the nut to 25nm? Or am I missing something?
      Nope the hydraulic tensioner has the pin you pull out. The tensioner bolts to the block and you just pull the pin on the side and it automatically tensions due to the springs inside the tensioner. The 25nm torque is just mounting the tensioner to the side of the engine

    5. Member bboy_jon's Avatar
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      01-09-2012 01:38 AM #680
      oh ok. Well thats simple than I think I might just go ahead and do the hydraulic one. I doubt I will check the tension if I get the manual one, plus its super expensive

    6. 01-10-2012 10:59 AM #681
      Thank you for the advice from this thread. I just finished my timing belt/ water pump swap and that was the most nerve-wrecking experience I have ever had on my cars. Headgasket on my vr6 wasnt this bad. Nonetheless, for others (newbs) like myself with this job, I will share some pointers.

      1. timing marks: honestly this is what took me the most time. i watched videos on youtube and read this thread over and over, but due to fear, I exaggerated my timing checks. What worked for me was a) setting the cam mark b) looking at the flywheel TDC "0" mark and c) pulling out #1 spark plug, putting a long extension in, and finding TDC at the piston peak. I marked the belt, but that only helped a little, as I was off by half a tooth with the new one and I couldn't figure out why (hence the nervousness!). Once I cranked it over manually twice, and the extension was at its peak, cam mark was on and I saw the TDC "0", I was set. Nervous, but set.

      2. tensioner: that was a PAIN! I was tired. That is a good resting point. I could not get that top bolt in if it saved my life! But, I came back the next day, but a 5mm allen in to line up the hole-working from the bottom-and held the tensioner in place while screwing in the screw with some force. My problem was that the screw wouldn't catch. I was not applying enough force.

      3. idler pulley bolt: I have no idea why, but that bolt wouldn't budge! Lube, leverage, nothing. I didn't want to risk more damage like a broken bolt in the block, so I left it. It wasn't noisy so I trust that it's fine for the time being. I can always change it later.

      4. belt: that was tricky, especially when trying to keep those marks on. I kept the front a little tighter than the rear, but once the tension is on, marks don't really matter, as long as the cam and crank have not moved (which takes effort itself). I spent too much time trying to perfect those marks, and they just didn't matter, to me. My belt was and fairly snug before I pulled the tensioner pin, so that was easy.

      5: motor mounts: moving the engine up and down made this simple, but tricky. I found that the block mount goes in easiest with the engine very low. There is just no other way. Tighten the lower bolt then. Then, raise the engine all the way up and do the long bolt and the rear one. Done.

      the rest was straight forward. Started fine.
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      01-11-2012 01:36 AM #682
      I am interested in the Mechanical tensioner. so you just bolt it to your block and tighten the tensioner pulley to 25nm and its good? also i emailed MJM and they just said i didn't need motor mount stretch bolts? did something change from the first post? do i really need to replace the Crankshaft Seal and the camshaft seals? Im just trying to make sure i have everything down before i get into it.

    8. 01-11-2012 07:31 AM #683
      Quote Originally Posted by dubau2 View Post
      I am interested in the Mechanical tensioner. so you just bolt it to your block and tighten the tensioner pulley to 25nm and its good? also i emailed MJM and they just said i didn't need motor mount stretch bolts? did something change from the first post? do i really need to replace the Crankshaft Seal and the camshaft seals? Im just trying to make sure i have everything down before i get into it.
      Replacing the cam seals is way more work and you don't replace them when doing the timing belt.
      The mechanical tensioner works just like you said it does. You need the spanner wrench to rotate the pulley so it puts tension on the belt and then you tighten it down. This idea comes from vw 16v motors, they had this tensioner for years working flawless
      You don't need new motor mount bolts, you can re use...

    9. 01-11-2012 10:14 AM #684
      Quote Originally Posted by Twopnt016v View Post
      You don't need new motor mount bolts, you can re use...
      Some of them are TTY. On something like a mount you should be replacing:



      On the point of the t/belt install: if you are that worried about TDC, just mark you belt/cogs appropriately and count teeth/transfer...don't even worry about TDC. Not that that's the way I do it, but it seems to confuse some when that's thrown into the mix with belt marking.

    10. 01-11-2012 10:26 AM #685
      Quote Originally Posted by STOICH View Post
      Some of them are TTY. On something like a mount you should be replacing:



      On the point of the t/belt install: if you are that worried about TDC, just mark you belt/cogs appropriately and count teeth/transfer...don't even worry about TDC. Not that that's the way I do it, but it seems to confuse some when that's thrown into the mix with belt marking.
      I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that those were over torqued
      When I worked at the dealer they never got replaced by anyone...never had a failure in years..
      Sure it is a good practice if you can get them but it's not a must...

    11. 01-11-2012 10:54 AM #686
      Quote Originally Posted by Twopnt016v View Post
      I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that those were over torqued
      When I worked at the dealer they never got replaced by anyone...never had a failure in years..
      Sure it is a good practice if you can get them but it's not a must...
      The one that broke never met full torque. Other was on the verge of breaking. Those bolts had been installed for roughly 30K miles and that is what happened when trying to reuse. I reuse some TTY bolts, but they sure as hell aren't going to be on major mounting points.

      I understand some people get by, but it should not be a suggestion to a weekend warrior about to take on a t/belt job. Spend the extra $12-15, get new bolts, be reassured. I just don't personally feel that a mount point like that should be taking the chances on reusing bolts are are technically defective upon removal.

    12. 01-11-2012 11:11 AM #687
      Quote Originally Posted by STOICH View Post
      The one that broke never met full torque. Other was on the verge of breaking. Those bolts had been installed for roughly 30K miles and that is what happened when trying to reuse. I reuse some TTY bolts, but they sure as hell aren't going to be on major mounting points.

      I understand some people get by, but it should not be a suggestion to a weekend warrior about to take on a t/belt job. Spend the extra $12-15, get new bolts, be reassured. I just don't personally feel that a mount point like that should be taking the chances on reusing bolts are are technically defective upon removal.
      I understand where you are coming from...
      But as the guy above me already stated, I'm not the only one that has reused them...
      If you can get them then do it....

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      01-11-2012 12:48 PM #688
      ok thanks! sounds like ima go with the integrated engineering timing belt kit with the manual tensioner. i like to keep it as simple as possible. not a fan of over engineering a simple piece. and i can get some motor mount bolts i gotta stealership 5min away from my house. id feel safer getting new ones. also on the mechanical tensioner. do you just turn it till the belt is snug? any tips on judging that?

    14. 01-11-2012 01:06 PM #689
      ^^^You should be able to pinch the belt and twist it no more than 90*.

    15. Member toby lawrence's Avatar
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      01-11-2012 01:45 PM #690
      Quote Originally Posted by STOICH View Post
      ^^^You should be able to pinch the belt and twist it no more than 90*.
      What he said. You should be able to twist the belt about 90 degrees... if you can easily twist it more than that, it's too loose.
      science: it's for real.

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      01-11-2012 01:55 PM #691
      Quote Originally Posted by Twopnt016v View Post
      I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that those were over torqued
      When I worked at the dealer they never got replaced by anyone...never had a failure in years..
      Sure it is a good practice if you can get them but it's not a must...
      exactly, you can clearly see if threads are distorted after removal. On my own cars i've reused bolts with 2-5% more torque.
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      01-11-2012 04:21 PM #692
      Quote Originally Posted by tobz@postreleased View Post
      What he said. You should be able to twist the belt about 90 degrees... if you can easily twist it more than that, it's too loose.
      alright sweet that sounds pretty easy! well time to get ordering!!!! thanks guys your saving me a lot of money

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      01-12-2012 10:05 PM #693
      Anybody know if a Kevlar timing belt would be worth it?

    19. Member crazymoforz's Avatar
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      01-15-2012 03:52 AM #694
      I would recommend people not to preform this task until they understand what TDC means! The paint on belt should be more for reference than anything else, (ex. shortcut) but check timing mark on valve cover and crank on flywheel side because pulley on crank cannot always be an accurate reference point.

      Quote Originally Posted by Twopnt016v View Post
      You need to set the car at TDC(Top Dead Center) before you start.

      This is where the cam gear lines up with mark on the valve cover and the crank lines up with the mark on the lower timing belt cover. TDC is when the 1 cylinder is all the way up and flush with the top of the block.

      Once the car is set to TDC you could just remove the old belt and put the new one on. Then you should rotate the motor over twice by hand and check to make sure the cam gear is lining up and also that the crank gear is lining up. DO NOT ROTATE THE MOTOR WITHOUT THE BELT ON!!!!!!!!!

      The purpose of the timing belt is to keep the head(valves) in time with the block(pistons) so they do not contact each other.

      Putting paint marks on the old belt before you take it off is just a extra step that some people take to make sure they don't get the belt off by a tooth or more. If you get the belt off some teeth your valves will contact your pistons and you will have to take the head off and replace the bent valves. Mark the old belt and cam gear with 1 mark and the old belt and crank gear with 2 marks and then transfer the marks to the new belt. Then when you put the new belt on make sure all the marks line up before releasing the tensioner and you can be sure everything is good. You still need to rotate the motor over by hand twice and check your cam and crank marks. Keep in mind that the paint marks will not line up but the factory marks should. If you rotated the motor over by hand like 5 times eventually the paint marks would all line up again.

      I would strongly suggest you use the paint mark method since you don't fully seem to understand TDC and what the timing belt does. That way when you are wrestling the belt on you can just look at the marks for reference. You don't have to use the mark method but if you screw this up you will be looking at a few thousand dollars to repair.
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    20. Member DowNnOuTDubin's Avatar
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      01-15-2012 05:31 AM #695
      Quote Originally Posted by dubau2 View Post
      Anybody know if a Kevlar timing belt would be worth it?
      Nope, because you're going to have to do the job anyways again to replace your water pump.

    21. Member toby lawrence's Avatar
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      01-15-2012 12:04 PM #696
      Quote Originally Posted by crazymoforz View Post
      I would recommend people not to preform this task until they understand what TDC means! The paint on belt should be more for reference than anything else, (ex. shortcut) but check timing mark on valve cover and crank on flywheel side because pulley on crank cannot always be an accurate reference point.
      How is someone supposed to check a mark on the crank on the flywheel side? Gonna drop the tranny to do a timing belt? O_o Flywheel is the least accurate of all three spots to check because it could be a new, different flywheel. More people have their stock crank pulley than stock flywheel.
      science: it's for real.

    22. 01-15-2012 12:12 PM #697
      Crank over flywheel...

    23. Member crazymoforz's Avatar
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      01-16-2012 01:04 AM #698
      Quote Originally Posted by tobz@postreleased View Post
      How is someone supposed to check a mark on the crank on the flywheel side? Gonna drop the tranny to do a timing belt? O_o Flywheel is the least accurate of all three spots to check because it could be a new, different flywheel. More people have their stock crank pulley than stock flywheel.
      5spd has a plug that could be removed, flywheel has a notch that you could line up. aftermarket flywheel (well, most that i have installed, have an existing mark) 6spds do not have the plug. What crank mark are you guys referring to? serp pulley? HA! loosen those 4 bolts and tell me how much that pulley moves around. One tooth off and the car will run like Sh** and have a never ending CEL.
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    24. Member bboy_jon's Avatar
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      01-17-2012 01:41 AM #699
      Quick question(s), only the passenger side motor mount needs to be loosened/removed correct? No messing with the dogbone or anything? How are you guys lifting the engine? Just jacking up by the tranny? Just curious because when I was doing my dogbone bushings, jacking up in different spots moved the engine differently.

      Ordering my kit today!

    25. 01-17-2012 02:08 AM #700
      Only one mount needs to be removed.
      I used a small piece/plank of wood under the sump to distribute the load to a hydraulic trolley jack. I found it necessary to adjust the engine height at times to wiggle things in and out, so a hydraulic jack made things easy. I also had an axle stand positioned under the plank to catch the engine in case the jack gave way.
      Last edited by Iangti7777; 01-17-2012 at 02:15 AM.

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