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Coverless timing belt concerns

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I just did the timing belts on my 88 DL and demolished the timing covers.  Do I need to be worried about the belt slipping off of the rear of the cogs when running it with the timing belt covers removed?  How tight should the timing belts be? 

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push the tensioner firmly. that should be enough pressure. run it for a while and see where the belt rides, if its towards to outside of the cogs, add some pressure. if its riding towards the inside of the cogs loosen it some. you want the belt to ride near the center.

 

you do not need the inner or outer covers. many many people run without them, without issue. the timing marks that are on the inside cover can be substituted with the seam where the valve cover meets the head.

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dont worry about those covers, i took mine off after i rebuilt the engine, been in snow, mud, and haven't had any issues, plus if you get a leaky crank or cam seal they will just collect all the oil and get it on the belts which is no buenos. i would rather have i leak down on the ground the get on the belts.  just my 2 cents.

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The only issue Ive ran into the 25,000 miles running coverless is spilling a bit of oil on the right timing belt while maintaining my oil level. A simple solution is to set a rag over the cam pulley under the oil filler tube. But it seems when ever I do this, no oil is spilled.

Real easy belt changes, and simple diagnosis of oil leaks or h2o pump/oil pump changes.

 

My belts run real close the engine side of the pulleys. I used to be worried they would work their way back and fall off.It hasnt happened yet. and I rely on my car to deliver pizzas. I run about 50-80 miles a day.

 

Oh, a plus side in my opinion, everyone will think you are crazy when you pop the hood and they see the exposed belts. :)  After tripping out on the spare tire

Edited by 81EA81
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Ha!  One of the belts is hanging out real close to the engine side of the pulley, but it isn't getting any closer.  I have to make this thing go for a couple hundred miles when I finally get around to moving it, so I've been more nervous than usual about how it runs.  I took it around the block a couple of times to work out the kinks... fairly sucessful so far, with just a loose hose clamp and the valve cover gasket still leaking oil.  She seems to have to leak from somewhere, at least it's something easy that I messed up!  Let it stay that way!

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The covers hae nothing to do with the guiding of the timoing belt.

 

The belts are guided by the tensioners and the lips on the oil pump and crank sprockets. The belts naturally tide towards the inside of the cam pulleys, as this is the flattest part, and the front of the pulley is rounded.

 

I run all my belts open including ej22's with no issue.

 

True there may be water exposure on the idlers, tensioners. Sometimes they will show flash rust on them. But prudent maintenance dictates the idlers/tensioners would be replaced as routine before they would fail.

 

Plus, with having open covers, you can easily inspect and replace anything at any given moment, even off the side of the road. Going coverless saves you from haing to remove the crank pulley, except for changing a front seal. You can do the water pump without removing belts, and you can do the oil pump (remove belts) without removing the crank pulley.

 

Should the belt snap, keep a spare in the trunk. Coverless makes an over the side of the road repair possible within 20 minutes, and all you need is a 22mm(7/8") wrench or socket, and a deep well 12mm socket to change them. Add a 14mm to change an idler pulley.

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