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Experienced mechanics, help me with timing belt change

turbo timing belt wrx ej255 06 wrx timing belt

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26 replies to this topic

#1 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 09:43 AM

The 'time' side of my maintenance schedule says my car needs a timing belt. The car has only 51,000 miles but is an 06 (delivered in October of 05).

 

This would be my first Subaru timing belt and I think I'm gonna have some questions and probably need some moral support. (actually, the ONLY T-belt I've ever installed was on a 1978 Civic wagon ! - that was belt only too)

 

first, it appears my car has an ej255 engine. I think I'd like to get parts from either theimportexperts or mizumoauto on ebay, however, the compatibility/'selection scheme' often says my car isn't compatible. Still, a coupla links that 'look' good are ; http://www.ebay.com/...STRK:MEBIDX:IT  and  http://www.ebay.com/...X:IT#vi-ilComp 

 

look OK?

 

 

 

Also, I'd rather not do any work/spend money that folks would consider unnecessary. Mostly because of risk due to my inexperience. I DON"T mind working on the car for 2-3 days or paying for good parts, so IF I change the waterpump (would you change it at 51K miles?), I'm gonna get an Aisin. I know nothing about the GMB parts listed in one of those links and am leaning toward the more expensive NTN w'ever parts. Many people seem to think I should change the water pump and the cam and crank seals (remember - 51,000 miles ) but, as for the seals, it seems there's some 'art'/skill involved, and maybe I'd need a special tool to remove them - maybe to seat them as well. Plus, I've never used the sealants you guys talk about, Ulta grey or anaerobic? Couple that with stories of cracking cam pulleys(there's 4 of them!) and needing to sand-down (?) some shaft surfaces - I kinda feel like it might be too risky for me to tackle the seals unless I see leaks?

 

I'd like a link to the FSM for this job if someone knows it (2006 WRX Wagon)

 

Does everyone pull the oil pump and re-seal the back of it? Can I just leave it alone?

 

What size socket is needed for the crank pulley? (in case i need to get a 6-point for my impact)

 

Will I need to use any of the following;  sealants (what types?),  anti-seize(where?)  ,threadlocker (where?),  grease or special lube (where?)

 

For a first timer, would you recommend pulling the radiator? probably install new hoses if I do but ???

 

any parts easily damaged plastic or hardware that will likely need replacing along the way? (clips,screws, bolts, nuts)

 

any suggestions for the major 'gotchas' to watch out for? any decent pics or videos around?

 

I have hardware stores near enough, dealer is 17 miles away.

 

 

I don't expect someone to respond to everything, but I will listen to any wisdom you guys want to pass along. naturally, I have to live with any compromises I make, just wondering what experienced mechs have to say. If waterpumps leak coolant instead of seizing their bearings, I might leave mine in for instance.



#2 grossgary

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 10:46 AM

All Subaru crank pulleys have been 22mm since the 80's (and maybe longer).

 

No special sealants or grease anywhere is required.

Oil pump gets Ultra Grey or Anaerobic  (my preference) or your favorite equivalent.

If you have any loose backing plate screws on the oil pump - you can put threadlocker on those and tigthen them.  Probably particularly important if you don't have a really good screw driver.
My impact driver is high quality bits that grip the screw heads like perfection - amazing how much more it will tigthen than any standard screw driver (without using the "impact" functionality.)

 

Properly removed seals don't require sanding.  Properly removed/installed pulleys shouldn't crack either.  I wouldn't worry about it - you sound careful, timid, and like you have time/won't rush or guess at solutions.  They crack when people try things that don't work out so well.  I've cracked one...and I was attempting feeble ways at holding it in place.

 

That said - these water pumps and seals rarely leak and the oil pumps rarely have issues as well.

I see no issue doing the timing belt only and then plan on doing the water pump/seals the next time if everything is bone dry now. 


You could do the oil pump seal first - since that's the easiest one.  Check the original seal - if it's dry, hard, brittle and not supple like the new one - you may use that as a suggestion to go ahead and replace the cam seals.  If the old seal is pliable and in good shape, then skip the cam seals.

 

I never remove radiators for timing belts.  Maybe for a first timer, but they're really not hard at all.  Sounds like you'll have time and be plenty careful.

Tape a piece of cardboard over it instead.

 

Yes - replacing seals is a bit of an "art". 

1. removing and tigthening the cam bolt - they are TIGHT.  use a rubber strap wrench to hold it.

2. removing the seal - easy does it.

 

Have you look up Gates kit on Amazon? I think i'd lean towards those before the Mizumo kits, having bought quite a few of them.  The PCI parts are fine, but I wouldn't pay a premium for those myself.



#3 grossgary

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 10:46 AM

search for FSM's, they're everywhere, i've got a bunch.



#4 14D

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 11:19 AM

This tool http://www.amazon.co...r/dp/B000FPYW4K makes pulling old seals a breeze and is WELL worth it.



#5 somick

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 11:20 AM

http://people.csail....cation/2009.zip

 

It should have your 2006 FSM as well.

 

 

Good luck,

Sam



#6 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 11:26 AM

thanx GG

 

and 14D and  somick !


Edited by 1 Lucky Texan, 04 September 2014 - 11:26 AM.


#7 somick

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 11:36 AM

A question for the information I found in the FSM in the link I provided earlier.


 

43.7 teeth.  Do you really need to count that precisely if all the marks are lined up?


 

Another question is about the tightening torque:  135 ft/lb and then turn a number of degrees.  What do they mean?

 

 

Regards,

Sam



#8 upnorthguy

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 11:52 AM

Many timing belts have marks painted on them for lining up with the timing marks on the cam/crank gears and the timing covers.  Not all belts have this.  It is good to check and make sure the marks are correct and that you have the belt going the right direction.

 

Once you tighten the crank bolt to the desired torque, then the number of degrees of a circle is the additional.  For example, if the extra mount was 90 degrees, that would be 1/4 of a turn (e.g. have the wrench go from 12 o'clock to 3 o'clock).  I just tighten it a lot (my largest torque wrench only goes to 90 ft/lbs.  I do that, plus a little more with a pipe.



#9 grossgary

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 11:54 AM

No need to count teeth.  Cams lined up, crank lined up, install belt, and you're done.  Counting teeth and lines are not needed, they're just aids to verify. 

 

I thought 135 was more like a final torque value...i think the "degree" procedure says to torque to something like 40 ft-lbs then rotate a certain number of degrees.

 

135 ft-lb is about the torque value for installing it without the "degree" style method. 

 

i never use that for crank pulleys - just make it really tight with a 3 foot pipe over your socket and it's not going anywhere.  crank is cast iron, unlike the aluminum block, yo'ud have to have no sense to strip it.



#10 forester2002s

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 12:10 PM

I find it easier to remove the radiator, when doing the timing belt.

It gives you a bit more room to play with.

But most of all, it is an ideal opportunity to refill with fresh coolant (for which it may well be overdue anyway). Unless the hoses are really in bad shape, the existing ones can be reused without problem.

Taking the radiator out is real easy, and doesn't take much time.



#11 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 12:48 PM

I own one clicker torque wrench that goes up to 150lbs - and doesn't really work that well for really small values (like under 20 or 30 or so is- tricky)

 

will I need an inch-pound wrench? I have an old beam style 3/8" drive that might work for smaller values.



#12 zombieforce

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 01:38 PM

I have two old screwdriver s with rounded edges I use for popping out seals. They work great and dont scratch cam or crank journals. I would inspect everything first with belt and covers off. If the seals arent leaking, dont worry do them next time. Its low enough mileage that you will be ok most likely. Worst case you have to pull belt and do it again in 15k or something like that. Oil pump isnt a big deal to reseal at all. No real skill needed there just the right tools. Take yourntime use the appropriate timing marks and double check yourself and you will be fine.

#13 86BRATMAN

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 01:42 PM

At your mileage I wouldn't bother with a water pump. Most all aftermarket ones are inferior to oe anyways. I've always gone by the philosophy of a water pump every other timing belt change.

#14 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 05 September 2014 - 09:02 AM

I was hoping one or 2 people would feel that way about the water pump. And I'm sensitive to the fact that skipping one or 2 items carries some risk - I may just plan on going only 7-8 years instead of 9 on this service (assuming similar use/mileage)

 

I was looking at some pages from an FSM and there's an oil can shown
dripping on the crank bolt. Oil OK or anti-seize?  (some other parts appear to require
toothpaste ? lol! something from a tube so - threadlocker or sealant
???)



Also, would you guys change the tensioner? or just its pulley ?



The main kit I'm focusing on has GMB brand pulleys - any experience with that brand?



#15 grossgary

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Posted 05 September 2014 - 09:48 AM

any oil based product - whatever can of power steering, lawn mower, or whatever oil, power steering fluid you got laying around.  it's just to lubricate for proper torque.  i wouldn't put anything on it, never have, but i can understand wanting to.

 

i would change the entire tensioner.  the hydraulic mechanism is prone to failure probably more than the pulley.

 

i've bought lots of kits with GMB stuff. i think there's some discussion as to one of the idlers having double bearings verses single....but i forget the particulars.

 

if you replace the water pump - get a Subaru gasket, the aftermrakets are flimsy.



#16 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 05 September 2014 - 10:26 AM

Oh yeah, I recall you or someone recommending the metal gasket for the water pump. One kit I saw includes a metal gasket. I'll remember that for the future.

 

 

 

i think I'm gonna order this kit; http://www.ebay.com/...=STRK:MEBIDX:IT

 

If I DO see weeping, I'll have the seals ready to go.  Dunno if I store them, if they'd still be OK to use 7-8 years from now though!



#17 mikec03

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Posted 05 September 2014 - 12:00 PM

I used this kit, but mostly for 90's cars which only require 60K between TB changes.  I have changed the water pump to aisin which is a small charge.

I wouldn't use the seals that they supply.  I have bought them from subaru and thrown away the kit seals.  And I haven't changed them even with cars over 200K if there wasn't any leaks.  I know, my bad!  But if they aren't leaking, they will probably go another 60 K without leaking and even if they do, it's not a big deal to have a few drips from the front end. 

 

It's a good question about the GMB pulleys.  Certainly they are good for 60K.  But a 105K, I don't know.  It's too bad someone can't offer a knowledgeable opinion.  I can't even figure out if they are single or double bearings?



#18 grossgary

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Posted 05 September 2014 - 12:07 PM

 I have changed the water pump to aisin which is a small charge.

 

good point - these ebay companies often allow you to call and change a particular part as desired, they'll of course price adjust accordingly.



#19 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 08 September 2014 - 11:05 PM

I get how the  old belt, maybe clipped in place in a few spots, would prevent the left-side cams from rotating and colliding valves with each other, but I don't see how I would take the old belt off and put the new one on. Do I need to buy that tool that holds them?



#20 grossgary

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 05:17 AM

that tool is definitely not needed but if it helps you personally the first time doing it, then by all means get one.

 

with the timing marks all lined up - you just pull the belt off.  there's no risk of damage.  if one of the loaded cams snaps out of place - just rotate it back in place.  it's that simple.  just don't have your knuckles close to it when it snaps (like if you're turning it with a small 1/4" socket and it wants to let loose while turning) - you can loose some skin when they baby rips.



#21 Ibreakstuff

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 07:18 AM

I "rang the bell" on my first ej255/d25 timing belt change, had the cam sprockets aligned then bumped one side accidentally. Not something you want to happen, but no damage. If my fingers were in there it would have been bloody.
 


Edited by Ibreakstuff, 09 September 2014 - 07:20 AM.


#22 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 07:35 AM

OK guys, I guess I was thinking they 'couldn't' maintain their positions or were on a hair trigger like a rat trap or something. Seems like a little care should be good enough.

 

If one snaps out of position, just turn the 'shortest' distance to get it back? or 'must' they always turn clockwise (looking from the front - not the driver's position)



#23 ivans imports

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 10:16 AM

had to put 1200ftlbs on a cam bolt on vvt turbo forester other day was crazy tight took 3 of us two holding cam and me with a 4 ft snapon bar to get it to move. Never seen cam bolts so tight broke two snapon allen sockets and one outside bolt remover tool. My 1/1/2 inch snapon impact gun would not touch it



#24 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 10:19 AM

had to put 1200ftlbs on a cam bolt on vvt turbo forester other day was crazy tight took 3 of us two holding cam and me with a 4 ft snapon bar to get it to move. Never seen cam bolts so tight broke two snapon allen sockets and one outside bolt remover tool. My 1/1/2 inch snapon impact gun would not touch it

 

I.....I have no words....



#25 grossgary

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 12:23 PM

 just turn the 'shortest' distance to get it back?

 

yep, just turn it back the same way it snapped.   some will be loaded and wanting to let loose, but no big deal.  granted i've done a bunch, but those dual over cam head engines are not that hard there's just two more sets of lines to keep lined up, a drop in the bucket compared to the overall job.  i've done the belt only in 45 minutes before on rust-free DOHC subarus.







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