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    Thread: A quick D.I.Y. Cam Chain and Tensioner *BPY engines

    1. 12-17-2015 02:30 PM #26
      The cut out in the inlet camshaft for the locking tool to fit in isn't as good firm fit as the exhaust cam and it can either be advanced or retarded a tooth each way putting the timing out of synch do a search on YouTube, a guy in America does a head job on a 2.o tfsi it's about 35 minutes but tells how he got it wrong and corrected the problem

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    3. 01-06-2016 04:35 PM #27
      wondering whether the adjuster bolt was loosen in anti clockwise direction ? or clockwise? mine is really tight and couldn't remove at all. any suggestions?

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      01-12-2016 07:00 PM #28
      wondering whether the adjuster bolt was loosen in anti clockwise direction ? or clockwise? mine is really tight and couldn't remove at all. any suggestions?
      I might be too late to help you on this but maybe it'll help someone else... The cam adjuster bolt loosens in a counter clockwise direction. That is, if you are standing in front of the car you pull your breaker bar (yes you'll want a breaker bar for this) down/towards you to crack the bolt loose. It is on extremely tight and the longer you've driven your vehicle the tighter it will be. It helps to have someone else putting pressure on the end of your breaker bar with the special polydrive and making sure it is perfectly snug on the bolt. Even with someone helping to do that I had the misfortune of shredding the teeth off my cam adjuster bolt and we had to go get EZ outs at Sears and drill into the cam adjuster bolt and reverse it out which took a good extra hour. If this happens to you be careful you don't drill all the way through the bolt with an EZ out or you'll drill into the cam itself which is obviously not good.

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    6. 01-13-2016 08:05 AM #29
      Anyone try applying heat to the cam to make removal of this bolt easier?

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      01-25-2016 02:39 PM #30
      Thanks to theGLIguy for his write up! I just performed this service on my B6 Passat this weekend and found your DIY to be very thorough and helpful!

      I ran into a couple issues when doing the job, that I thought I'd share in case anyone else has a similar experience:

      1. The cam locking tool I bought was a piece of crap. The tiny screws that held the locking posts into the holes in the base plate were garbage and bent as soon as I tried to loosen the cam adjuster bolt! I fixed it by replacing the screws with series 8.8 stainless screws from the hardware store and adding some metal epoxy to the base of both posts. Wish I had a welder, a few good tack welds would have fixed this too. I also used the cam wrench to hold the intake cam in place while breaking loose the adjuster bolt this kept pressure off of my repaired clamp and worked perfectly to remove the bolt!

      2. The tensioner was completely obliterated:

      As you can see the top plastic guide snapped in half and most of it was jammed in between the tensioner and the adjuster which left the chain riding on top of the metal piston. No wonder the engine ticked and puttered so badly!

      3. I found that 2 of the 3 cam adjuster seals, on the shaft that is part of the cam chain cover which slides inside the adjuster, had pieces missing. I reassembled everything since I couldn't find a fix for the seals that day. The car runs great but I'm getting a P000A code that seems to point to the broken seal rings. I've found that VW replaced the cam chain cover with a revised part that replaces the brittle plastic rings with metal ones. I have also found that you can buy the metal replacement rings - part number 06f198107a - but am unsure they will work with my old cover.
      Seeing as the rings can be purchased for $50, and the new cover is $500, I think I'll try the metal ones before buying a new cover.

      I'll list the tools for sale soon, at a discount since the clamp is repaired. Let me know if anyone else needs them.


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      01-25-2016 06:24 PM #31
      Since this is a bit of a tip I picked up while recently doing my cam chain replacement and regarding the cam locking tool, I also posted this at the trade a tool thread.

      So, I just completed this cam chain replacement service on my 2005.5 A4 and I concur about the CTA brand 2878 cam locking tool, total piece of junk. I've seen a few other brands that look similar as well with the tiny little screws on the top of the backing plates holding the dowels in.

      The CTA tool I bought didn't even provide the least amount of resistance, the pegs just peeled out of the backing plate like butter and bent inward. The peg is only set loosely about half way into the backing plate (about 1/4") so all the force is applied to the tiny screws which only had about 3 threads of engagement. I tried longer screws but that made no difference due to the shallow dowel pegs and loose fitment in the backing plate.

      I sent the CTA 2878 back to FCPeuro for a refund along with a strong suggestion to discontinue carrying this crap tool.

      After this tool fail and a few days lost locating a real tool, I got an Assenmacher T10252 which worked flawless. This tool has the pegs pressed all the way and tightly into the backing plate.

      If you don't want to lose time due to poorly designed tools, DO NOT BUY A CTA 2878 cam locking tool, they are garbage. It might be safe to assume the same of other branded lower cost tools which also have the little screw in the top of the dowel holding it in the backing plate; I can only say for sure the CTA is poorly designed.

      A picture is with a million words so here you go:

      CTA with dowels collapsed in:


      CTA disassembled:


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      Last edited by markcm; 01-25-2016 at 06:30 PM.

    9. Member mwurman's Avatar
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      01-28-2016 09:28 PM #32
      I'm doing a repair on a friends...reported his engine sounded like marbles..his tensioner was completely destroyed.




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      01-29-2016 07:30 PM #33
      Update on my broken cam adjuster shaft seal rings:
      I just got my order in from vwpartsoutlet.com and the rings are plastic, not metal. This is good news to me because I don't have to worry about compatibility with them replacing my broken plastic ones. I'll follow up again once I have the new rings installed.

      Also I was able to return the CTA cam clamp to Amazon for a full refund! Let me know if anyone needs the cam wrench, 6 point bit, and tensioner pin for cheap!


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      02-10-2016 03:44 PM #34
      So I replaced all three rings, installed the cover, buttoned everything up under the hood and it seems to have fixed my CEL. I've driven 300 miles since installation and no problems.
      Let me know if you have any questions about my experience with the repair.


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    12. 02-22-2016 01:04 PM #35
      Quote Originally Posted by SuckSquishBangBlow View Post
      Anyone try applying heat to the cam to make removal of this bolt easier?
      anyone have a reason not to apply heat ?anything in the adjuster that can be damaged ? did it to mine all seems fine but not a 100% on what exactly is internal to the adjuster
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    13. 02-22-2016 01:50 PM #36
      Turned out I didn't need heat. I got an assenmacher cam locking tool and #10 polydrive on amazon for $115. You don't need the rest of the tools that come with the Baum Tools kit. Instead of the using the special tool to rotate the intake cam, I rotated the engine into position by turning the poly drive adjuster bolt.

      Once the cam locking tool was in, the adjuster bolt came out easily with a 24" breaker bar. I was concerned having read of people stripping out the adjuster bolt, but in the case of my car, that fear was unfounded.

    14. Senior Member MFZERO's Avatar
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      03-22-2016 06:06 PM #37
      Thanks for this thread. After reading it pushed me to tear in to my wife's car and get the tensioner replaced. No more rattle

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      03-30-2016 01:10 AM #38
      Unfortunately recently my cam follower has failed.
      Did not know of this issue until after warranty ended.
      The HPFP piston is in tack but slightly warn, cam lobe does not look very scared or damaged.
      I know I have follower fragments somewhere internal, optimistically lodged in corners or crevices instead of chewing up my cams and chain?
      making a little more noise than typical lately.
      In the next few weeks I plan on opening up the valve cover & cam chain cover, inspect for damage, remove any visible fragments, replace tentioner, chain, gaskets and follower (maybe a kit from Europarts)?
      Eventually soon I am planning on removing and cleaning any debris from the oil pan.
      Anyone who has been though this (unfortunately probably more than should have) I am looking for any insight / advise I should look for while I'm in there.
      Also looking for a GOOD cam locking tool or any associated tools I might need That I could rent, borrow or buy cheap.
      Thanks, PD

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      03-30-2016 06:25 AM #39
      I don't have any experience cleaning up after a cam follower failure so I can't gove any particular tips there besides what you've probably already though of doing but I can offer 2 things.

      1) take note of bmulder's situation in this thread which he solved and reported in post #34. I did the cam service without a hitch and then found out a month later that I musta scraped up one of those rings he describes when putting the cover back on because I found that there was a slightly improper amount of tension on the chain. Just enough to cause a little chain rattle at 1200 RPMs. I didn't even get a CEL like he did because just one ring was damage slightly. But having to pull the cover again just for that oversight was annoying so my advice is to get those rings and do them too. Only reason I bring it up is b/c it isn't in the DIY.

      2) I can put you in touch with a good guy with a good set of cam tools. I know they work well because they're the ones I used and sold to him. PM if interested.

    17. 03-30-2016 09:24 AM #40
      After careful inspection of my old tensioner (105k miles), it appears it was developing small cracks emanating from the hole in the center of the top shoe. Many of the failures I have seen online are caused by the top shoe cracking in half, and mine may have been in the early stages of this condition. One thing that may cause this is the momentary chain slap that occurs on cold starts. Another interesting data point in that the spring inside of my new INA tensioner was about 1/4" longer than the original spring, which may provide more preload on the chain during start up, eliminating the chain slap that could damage the shoe. I have put about 300 miles on the new tensioner and haven't had a single start up chain slap.

      Last edited by SuckSquishBangBlow; 03-31-2016 at 12:05 PM.

    18. Semi-n00b
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      04-26-2016 02:07 PM #41
      I have a pretty big problem with this thread. Well it's just not detailed enough. What if you have a broken timing chain. You go to set the new timing chain onto the mark on the intake cam is it supposed to be straight up and down? Like literally, or straight up and down with the angle of the engine which sits back say 20~ degrees. Off to the left a little bit? Because even with the real good cam locking tool it can move a tooth or two to the left or right. And if somebody could tell me how many chain links from the intake cam dot to the exhaust cam dot that would be great? And in this DIY you don't say if you mark the chain when you took it off or really how even put the chain back on a hundred percent correct. You have to get it exactly right. I'm a 5-year experienced technician with Volvo and they're way more complicated I just don't have my facts for this Volkswagen and it wouldn't be that hard.
      Last edited by btrux0611; 04-26-2016 at 02:11 PM.

    19. Semi-n00b
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      04-26-2016 02:18 PM #42
      By the looks of your picture, this pic I drew a line in below shows what it looks like should be correct. I just wanted to mark sure. [IMG]20160426_141550.png[/IMG]

    20. Member Keden's Avatar
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      05-04-2016 10:38 AM #43
      Just wanted to say BIG THANK YOU for the DIY. It has helped me greatly in replacing my cam chain and tensioner over the weekend.

      My tensioner turned out to be in a great shape. The chain, however, had a lot of slack at the bottom. I suppose it simply stretched out after 10 years and was making a lot of noise especially on cold starts. Those noises are gone now.

      To echo the previous comments again - be prepared to drill out the cam adjuster bolt. Although I had the proper socket, there was no way that bolt was going to come out after 10 years of being in there. This was the biggest pain in the whole job. Be careful not to damage the cam or the adjuster when drilling it out.

      Also, I would recommend marking the position of the cams before you take it apart. Just put a few marks on the face of the intake cam sprocket, a cam adjuster and the casing as reference points for when you put everything back together. Although the cams are locked, they still have leeway and will move when you take the adjuster and the chain off. I didn't make the markings and had to count the chain links based on the picture in this DIY, which turned out to be OK, but gave me chills.

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      05-04-2016 12:00 PM #44
      I'd be very careful with the diagnosis that the "tensioner is fine" and suggest replacing it. The cams are only connected via the chain, when the tensioner is not taunt, the slack (which there will be some) will accumulate on either side depending on the rotation of each cam.

      Bottom line, best replace that tensioner, it probably isn't "fine".


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    22. Member Keden's Avatar
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      05-04-2016 08:47 PM #45
      Quote Originally Posted by markcm View Post
      I'd be very careful with the diagnosis that the "tensioner is fine" and suggest replacing it. The cams are only connected via the chain, when the tensioner is not taunt, the slack (which there will be some) will accumulate on either side depending on the rotation of each cam.

      Bottom line, best replace that tensioner, it probably isn't "fine".


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      Oh yeah, I totally agree, it's best to replace it while you're in there in any case, which is what I did. By "fine" meant that it had as much tension in it as the new one, had no visible cracks or damage and was not clogged, unlike some of the other ones that I saw. It's a cheap part anyway, so definitely put a new one in if you have the chain off.

    23. 05-08-2016 11:29 AM #46
      I recently started getting a lot of knocking and top end noise. Comparing it to youtube videos it turned out to be the cam chain tensioner. I didn't want to spend a $100 on a cam lock id use once so i decided to build one. I was thinking of welding two bolts to a piece of steel then thought it would be even stronger, cheaper and faster to make it out of galvanized iron pipe. I used 1/4" fittings which comes out to a diameter of .569, right around the size of the cam slots. Cost was about 5 dollars and its strong! Would recommend grease and going slow as you need to get these fittings very tight to make them the 4 inches across. Hope this helps someone.



    24. 05-09-2016 11:22 PM #47
      Thanks for the guide but I have a few questions that were not addressed.
      On the back of the camshaft adjuster there is a mark to indicate possibly starting point? Also from this starting point do you need to count any links. I have found a DIY for a 1.8 engine and it has a count of 16 links. Not sure if this applies to the MKV 2.0L

    25. Semi-n00b
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      05-11-2016 07:06 PM #48
      Here is a good picture edit below of what the intake cam timing should look like !

      Place the cam chain around both gears first of course. leaving the exhaust gear slightly off the cam. . I found that you may need someone( or a 4 ft long bar) to hold the exhaust cam exactly at its timing belt side marking. It tends to fall back a half tooth. and youll need to turn the intake cam with that flat special tool a good tooth clockwise then slide the exhaust cam chain gear onto the cam. Its pretty tricky your first time . end result is the pic im attaching. I just did this job twice this month. pm for and additional information needed..

      [IMG]20160426_141550.png[/IMG]

    26. Semi-n00b
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      05-11-2016 07:10 PM #49
      why do i suck so bad at attaching pictures.. anyone want to teach me how? im a mechanic not a computer geek

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      05-11-2016 07:30 PM #50
      <a href="http://s816.photobucket.com/user/BryanTruxell/media/Mobile%20Uploads/LEGACY%20GT%20DOOR%20OPEN%20PICS/20160426_141550%20cam%20gear%20align%20passat.png. html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i816.photobucket.com/albums/zz90/BryanTruxell/Mobile%20Uploads/LEGACY%20GT%20DOOR%20OPEN%20PICS/20160426_141550%20cam%20gear%20align%20passat.png" border="0" alt="06 passat cam alignment photo 20160426_141550 cam gear align passat.png"/></a>

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