The lifespan and integrity of your motor vehicle can be drastically improved if you are active in monitoring and maintaining the engine and all of its integral mechanics.
One of the biggest issues when it comes to the engine is the timing belt tensioner.
This part is responsible for applying pressure to the timing belt, keeping it firmly in place and running smoothly.
When something goes wrong, it is often the tensioner that is faulty and not the actual belt itself.
Today’s vehicles are highly sophisticated and extremely intricate, their engines operate under higher temperatures and the engine parts are getting smaller and more intricate as technology and innovation evolve.
Engines today are placed under harsher conditions than ever before, to perform at a level that is constantly pushing the boundaries of their capabilities.
This innovation further reiterates the fact that vehicle maintenance is extremely important to a long and healthy driving life.
To avoid premature engine failures, you should always opt for OEM timing belt tensioners.
This ensures the quality and durability of such a part.
Now that you can identify that the tensioner is not functioning correctly, the next step would be to replace the timing belt tensioner.
1: Disconnect the negative battery cable. This ensures no live connections are active when you are performing the repair.
A tip would be to store all radio frequencies before disconnecting, to allow you to quickly reset your radio to its original settings.
2: Remove the alternator belt. Depending on the year and model of your vehicle, you may have to remove the serpentine belt to get access to the timing belt.
3: Remove all accessories that may be stopping you from accessing the timing belt cover.
These may include the power steering pump, alternator, AC compressor.
Be careful when removing the AC compressor, you should not remove any pressurized fittings as this could cause damage to the pump.
4: Line up the timing belt marks. Ensure the crankshaft pulley is aligned with a 0-degree mark on the timing scale.
5: Remove the bolts holding the timing belt cover in place.
6: Loosen the mounting bolts holding the tensioner using specialised cam holding tools.
7: Remove the tensioner and replace it with the new tensioner.
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8: Torque them to specifications and spin the tensioner and belt by hand to hear any noises that sound out of the ordinary.
9: Turn the engine back into position by using a socket or ratchet on the crank pulley bolt.
The aim is to realign the timing marks.
10: Reinstall the timing belt cover. Make sure the bolts are tight and it fits like a glove.
11: Reinstall the crank pulley and serpentine belt.
12: Start the engine and see if the noise is gone!
With all this information, you are now capable of maintaining an extremely important aspect of your vehicle.
With regular maintenance checks, you can drastically improve the lifespan and driving experience of your motor vehicle.
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