timing belt question on a 98 OB - Subaru Outback - Subaru Outback Forums
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 10-25-2011, 07:12 PM Thread Starter
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Question timing belt question on a 98 OB

tring to figure out if my 98 OBW has had it's timing belt replaced, I inspected the belt it looks okay for 132k miles on it. it doesn't look excessively worn, so I can't tell if it's the original belt or not. I did notice white paint markings on the camshaft gears.

my question is do the camshaft gears come with white painted on markings for the the I and II markings from the factory, or is that something that was done like by a service tech or a do-it- yourselfer? this may or may not answer my question if the timing belt has been replaced.

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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 10-25-2011, 09:23 PM
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I don't believe the camshaft sprockets come from the factory with white paint on the timing markings, so yes, the belt has probably been changed at some point, at some mileage. BUT .... were the TB pulleys, TB tensioner, and water pump changed? Those are important wear items that should also have been changed at the same time as the belt, but often aren't. Something else to consider.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 10-25-2011, 09:35 PM
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what does the writing on the belt look like?

i believe it may have been mentioned in another thread but i wouldn't spend much time worrying about the timing belt. the timing tensioner can fail and the timing pulleys fail too - particularly the lower sprocket with teeth, but the others can too. they are devoid of grease and spin freely and loudly - at this age/mileage they aren't capable of reliable high mileage and are more risky than the belt or water pump.

if the belt was not changed....what would you do? if the answer is "change it"....then the belt should be coming off again anyway - regardless of it being new or not - to replace the pulleys and tensioner as well which are an equally probable risk. it's an interference engine and if the belt breaks they bend valves. i just pulled the heads off a 2003 Forester today - all 8 exhaust valves are bent....kind of a silly risk on a new to you car.

best bet is to replace it all and know the car is good for another 105,000 miles.

H6 OBW VDC, H6 OB Sedan, Tribeca, Lifted XT6
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