How to Adjust a Timing Belt Tensioner How to Adjust a Timing Belt Tensioner

What You'll Need
Owners manual
A wrench
Protective eyewear

A timing belt tensioner is a simple and important part of the engine of a vehicle. A timing belt is also referred to as a cam belt. This part of the engine ensures that the valves operate in the correct timing system. Adjusting a timing belt tensioner can be a complex task. If you are uncomfortable working with the engine, you may want to seek professional help before you start.

Step 1 – Safety

Be sure your vehicle is parked on a flat surface. Turn the ignition to the off position. Read the owner’s manual provided by the manufacturer of the vehicle before you begin. Look through the guide to find the information you need on adjusting the timing belt tensioner. Put on your protective eyewear before you begin to work. Open the hood of the car. Lift the prop rod and secure it in position to keep the hood open. Detach the cables from the battery.

Step 2 – Locating the Timing Belt

Locate the timing belt in the engine compartment. If necessary, refer to your owner’s manual for the location. Remove the cover from the timing belt. Place the cover in a safe place, until it is time to put it back on.

Step 3 – Adjusting the Timing Belt Tensioner

Use your wrench to loosen the bolts that secure the timing belt tensioner. Loosen the tensioner enough so that it will be able to have a light contact with the timing belt.

Step 4 – Adjusting the Timing Belt

Check to see whether the timing belt is following its proper course. The timing marks on the belt should be aligned with the timing marks on the cam, crank and sprockets. If not, refer to the owner’s manual for the correct course. Adjust the timing belt once the course is correct.

Step 5 – Testing the Timing Belt Tensioner

Use your wrench to move the pulley of the crankshaft and turn the engine. Complete 2 or 3 complete revolutions of the engine. This will indicate whether the belt and tensioner are operating properly with the sprockets. Check for any resistance on the belt, and ensure that the valves and pistons are not in contact with each other

Step 6 – Securing the Timing Belt and Tensioner

Secure the bolts of the cover to the timing belt and tensioner. Be careful not to over tighten the bolts. If you find you need to make any other adjustments after you start the engine, it will more difficult to loosen and remove the bolts.

Step 7 – Reconnecting the Battery

Carefully reattach the cables to the battery. Lower the prop rod that is holding the hood open. Firmly and securely close the hood of the vehicle.

Step 8 – Testing the Engine

Turn the ignition to the on position and start the engine. Check to be sure that all of the parts in the engine compartment are running properly.

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