Anyone looking to change their belt, and struggling to find instructions, look no further. Just starting to put everything back together after successfully changing the timing belt. I'll be posting photographs and detailed instructions over the next week or so ABW.
Very happy bunny - no left over parts and it works.
What's that sound? It it valves clashing and bending as my engine top half flies apart at 4500rpm?
No, its me laughing at the £350 I was quoted to change the timing belt. Just put it all back together and fired it up. Smooth (and a little quieter?), and no problems running at 4500rpm for 30 seconds. Would have tried longer, but we have neighbours.
Once I have uploaded the pics from my camera and added arrows etc. I'll post a full description.
Generally 'they' say 60,000. I left mine to 80,000 and looking at the old one it has no obvious cracks etc, but is looked a bit glazed which I think is the beginning of the end.
Sorry for the hold up. I'm a teacher so the first week back is a bit manic, but having spent 6 weeks looking for how to do this job, I'm really keen to share.
(1) Raise and support the front end, and put the steering on a full right lock so you have good access behind the right front wheel. Remove the splash guard (it has 4 push rivets that are removed by pulling the centre out with a flat screwdriver)
Support the sump cover securely - I used a couple of concrete blocks topped with a piece of ply.
(2) Remove the engine mounting that is over the timing belt cover. It is in 2 parts. Accessing the bolts at the front of the engine was a little tricky so you might need a 14mm and 15mm offset spanner, but I managed with a socket in the end.
(3) Slacken off the alternator. The top (swing) nut is easy enough, but the odds are the bottom nut needs a few turns and I found this much easier from inside the wheel arch. Swing it forward and remove the 'fanbelt'.
(4) The water pump pulley needs to come off too. The 3 screws need a 10mm spanner. There is a hole you can wedge something in to hold the pulley whilst you unscrew. KEEP THE SCREWS SEPARATE - they are similar but not identical to the ones on the belt cover.
(5) Line up the tiny notch timing mark on the crankshaft pulley with the plastic indicator post sticking out from the timing cover.
(6) Now the bit that took me 3 days to solve - the pulley nut. The access is terrible - even if you had an air wrench you could not get it in. As far as I can tell the only way is an OFFSET 17mm spanner. I hacksawed off the "C" shaped end and found a steel pipe that fitted the cut shaft to create a 2m long, 17mm offset ring spanner (try google for that!).
Next I tried the 4th gear, hold the brakes down trick (forgot about the stick holding the brakes overnight and flattened my battery). Then I tried the using the starter motor trick - my hacked spanner fitted nicely against the beefy steel plate on the anti roll bar. Guess what - flattened the battery again. I started undoing the sump (after refitting the engine mount) thinking I would jam something in the crankshaft, then thought "Hang on. You can't get an air tool in there. What would a proper garage do?"
At this point I looked more closely at the clutch end of the engine and found a rubber cap about 5cm in diameter. Under the cap - flywheel! Most expensive flat screwdriver I had goes in (I bet suzuki have a special tool) and now my 2m spanner comes into play. The engine is light (and some fool removed the mounting!), so I found myself sitting on the engine to hold it down, with my left hand on the screwdriver in the flywheel and my right hand pushing the monster spanner. If you have not got long arms, borrow an assistant.
(7) You can re-align the timing mark by pushing the flywheel with your screwdriver. Jam it back in there to try and hold it steady whilst you remove the crankshaft pulley. No room for a puller, but a few taps with a plastic mallet brought it off.
(8) Undo the six 10mm screws holding the cover on. Realign the timing again just in case. Now, the one mystery. The cover comes off, but I could not remove it without breaking the plastic timing mark on the cover. I had to glue it back on carefully with araldite after refitting, so any ideas welcome. It may be that the post pulls out of the cover provided you do it before snapping it off!
(9) Remove cover and smile. Check that the timing marks are still correct. The camshaft pulley has a tooth with a stamped arrow that points up (there is a yellow arrow on the sheet metal behind the wheel to conform vertical).
(10) I cut my old belt in half lengthwise, slid off the nearest half and slid on the new belt as far as I could. Cutting took ages! I then cut across the old belt, removed it, and pushed the new belt all the way on. The tension seemed identical. Don't laugh - I used a luggage scale to see what force I needed to deflect the old belt 1cm inwards and then checked the new one.
(11) OK. Now I used a 17mm socket on the camshaft nut to turn the engine around for about 10 complete cycles. Pushing against the valve springs is pretty hard going, so don't panic. If you have messed up the timing and piston is hitting valve you will hear noise and feel a very different 'stuck' sensation. The springs are...springy.
(12) I then went to bed, and next morning hand turned about another 10 cycles to check all was still well with the timing. Put it all back in reverse order and fire her up! I torqued up the pulley nut to 100ft-lbs (seems common figure for small engine cars) with my luggage scales and careful placement on the monster spanner (A level physics finally pays off). Be gentle when re-fixing the engine mounting. The bolts that go into the block feel like they are harder that the block metal.
Regrets - I wish I had replaced the tensioner, but most of my mileage is steady 60mph on the motorway, so I figure it has a little less wear and tear. The old belt looked very glazed at 81000 miles, so probably needed replacing.
So far, no signs of trouble. There is an inspection port on the timing belt cover with I will be using together with a dentists mirror. Weirdest thing is my fuel economy has improved. I normally get 12 miles per litre. This tank I got 13.2 I can't figure out why - maybe I'm driving a little slower.
I think I already answered your questions, but being from Lancashire I'll answer them again as we're used to Yorkshire folk. I mentioned regretting not changing the tensioner, but I'm not worried. Most of my mileage is steady 3000rpm, which means minimal delta omega, which means less bearing wear. I will change it next holiday - now I know how and have the tools I reckon it will only take an hour. I'll probably change the alternator and fan belt whilst I'm in there.
I reckon the odds are pretty good - I have known plenty of people experience broken belts, but never met anyone who had a tensioner bearing failure. Doesn't mean it won't happen, I know, but the belt was the priority.
I didn't get a tensioner with the kit, because I didn't get a kit, just the belt. In addition to all the above, I figured if it was essential to replace both together, the reputable supplier I use was hardly likely to sell the belt on its own.
Pics will come when I have time - as I said, its the start of term so I am up until midnight-ish planning lessons and marking.
I think you should re-align the timing mark by pushing the flywheel with your screwdriver. Jam it back in there to try and hold it steady whilst you remove the crankshaft pulley. No room for a puller, but a few taps with a plastic mallet brought it off.
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