98 outback timing belt inquiries... - Subaru Outback - Subaru Outback Forums
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 06:02 PM Thread Starter
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Question 98 outback timing belt inquiries...

VEHICLE:
Ok. so I'm working on my friend's 98 subaru outback legacy wagon with the 2.5 DOHC motor with an automatic trans.

HISTORY:
A couple of years ago, we pulled this motor and put new headgaskets on it as well as a water pump and timing chain. What we did NOT do at the time was to replace any of the idler pullies or tensioner. Of course, while we were at it, we did the plugs and wires since they are such a bitch to get to. So, we got it all back together and up and running. THEN, fast forward to 6 months later... He's running down the highway in the fast lane and all of the sudden the car dies. He coasts to the shoulder and tries to restart. It stumbles but will not start. Then, the car gets towed to his house, sits a year, and now I'm finally getting back to working on it.

CURRENTLY...:
So I checked for fuel and spark and both and they both seem up to par. I was starting to wonder what was next when I thought to check the timing belt. So I pulled off the outside shrouds ( I have yet to pull the center one because I need to get the crank pulley off) and found a few things . 1st. The timing belt has been rubbing against something and was shedding off from the front of the car side of the belt (it is now thinner). 2nd. the timing marks on the drivers side bank are no longer lined up. I am getting ready to pull the crank pulley and get a more detailed look at all 4 cam pulleys and crank pulley marks for comparison.

My Questions:
1. The timing belt did slip. But only a bit (as the marks aren't to terribly off) and this is an interference engine, isn't it reasonable to assume that the engine will probably be ok once I get a new timing belt on and lined up? Maybe thats wishful thinking.
2. If the outcome is promising, this time I am going to get a full timing belt, tensioner, idler pulley kit and do it up right. Does anyone have any recommendations on the best quality kit per the best price?
3. What could have caused this belt to rub itself narrower? Is this a common occurence? The belt is obviously narrower than the cam sprockets yet it is guided by the crank pulley so once turning, it should line up with that pulley and stay in a correlating position on all of the other sprockets. Does this 'ring any bells' for anyone out there? Maybe I have missed something here?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 06:53 PM Thread Starter
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Ok. I did get the crank pulley and the center shroud off. I of course noted further "belt sheddings" in the center shroud cover. I turned the crank and attempted to line up the marks. I found that they all would line up perfectly except for the drivers side top cam which looks to be 2-3 teeth off (roughly at the 11 o'clock position). Again, I would think that this would be a minimal amount as far as the interference issue. I am also now thinking that replacing these worn idlers would fix the belt shredding issue? It seems to me that if the bearings were going out in one or more idlers, they might have a tendency to wobble and thus push the belt to one side of the group of sprockets and thus start eating into the belt? Just an idea. Pics to follow....
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 11:39 PM
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Yep. Idlers and tensioner, all front engine seals seal the oil pump. BTW the lower cogged idler by the water pump has the most tension on it and is the most common to fail (this from the guy at my dealer service center). At the very least replace that one and the tensioner every belt change. If it's only 2-3 teeth you should still be ok as far as the valves go.

My other car is a Subaru.... Come to think of it, so is my other other car
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-08-2011, 09:04 PM Thread Starter
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Awesome! I thought that I was on the right track. I found a good kit on ebay today with the belt, sprocket idler, hydraulic tensioner/idler, and other 2 idlers. I ordered it and now its time to play the waiting game. I was thinking of maybe changing the diff fluid in this guy. I'm not sure that its ever been done! At least not on my watch anyway. I will also definitely check those front seals before I redo the timing belts and pulleys. I thought we did em last time, but I DID see a bit of oil underneath the crank pulley area. Must double check...
Here are the links to a few pics of the "current belt situation":
https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/phot...eat=directlink
https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/phot...eat=directlink
https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/phot...eat=directlink
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-12-2011, 10:49 PM
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Its around 30 bucks for all 5 seals and their easy to replace, dont forget to losen the cam bolts before pulling the old belt off. I just did mine last week. The two pulleys on the drivers side are spring loaded when #1 is TDC and tended to spin out of time while I was trying to put new belt on. You can turn the top (IN) cam clockwise back and the bottom (EX) counterclockwise back to line up marks. Also the haynes manual and several threads here said to put idler pulley on last, I found this was not the case with mine I bolted up all pulleys and leaving the tensioner and t-pulley loose we lined up marks on new belt and pulleys I then moved tensioner toward belt and tightened up the two bolts released tension and tightened tensioner pulley. I also put loctite on all bolts especially the crank bolt as this had come loose and caused a major FU. I found and bought an ebay timing belt kit too, it cost 104 dollars plus 30 overnite, subaru wanted 100 bucks for belt alone.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-02-2011, 11:02 AM Thread Starter
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The new timing belt and idler pulley / tensioner set did the trick. The original problem turned out to be the timing belt slipping a few notches (but not seriously. Only enough to run the engine out of time - to the degree of not running). This was due to replacement of the timing belt minus new idler pulleys and tensioner set. The bearings were starting to freeze up and the belt started slipping.
Turns out a new gasket set for the plastic timing cover was needed as well. the old one was completely gone in some places and it was causing the timing belt / idlers to start wearing on the plastic cover itself!
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-19-2012, 12:57 PM
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can you show me what link opn ebay for the timming kit i may have to do mine soon

thx
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-19-2012, 01:09 PM
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just type in
Subaru EJ25 timing belt kit
or anything similar to that, there are tons of them out there, just do a search and find what you want.

i prefer the quality of theimportexperts stuff, the belts seem better, but they are more expensive. if you call them they'll put together anything you want - timing kits, seals, and their serpentine belts are extremely cheap.

H6 VDC OBW, H6 OB Sedan, XT6's, castrated LSi - FWD EJ18
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