Replacing The Timing Belt (and water pump) - DodgeIntrepid.Net Forums - Dodge Intrepid, Concorde, 300m and Eagle Vision chat
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-26-2019, 04:08 PM Thread Starter
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Replacing The Timing Belt (and water pump)

Hi all,

Is this best left to professionals?

I have a 1996 Chrysler Concorde LXI (3.5 engine), and after watching these videos, I thought about tackling the job myself...



My biggest concern is removing the engine pulley, and making sure the cams are back in their correct position after replacing the belt and pump.

If the cam pulleys are off a fraction, can this be remedied with a timing light (or diagnostic machine), or do you have to pull the belt covers and physically reposition the cams?

Sorry for my ignorance. I am not an engine mechanic, and I mainly work on stuff like pumps and brakes.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-26-2019, 11:48 PM
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the cams must be lined up to within the marks. if they end up wrong, then yes, the covers must come off.
it's not hard to time them, and being a first gen, there is no worry about valve interference.
use a box end to rotate the cams to hold them against roll over from valve spring pressure.
a little hard on the belt, but there have been a couple of users over the years who have said they were able to slip the belt in without removing the pulley.
i'm not of the school that reccomends it, but you can try before removing it, since it's a split cover at the bottom.
good luck. seems daunting, but isn't that bad if you are mechanically capable.
worst part is probably removing everything to get at it.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-27-2019, 01:35 AM
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I've done it with and without removing the radiator, at the very least remove the fans. The drivers side cam likes to snap over about 120 degrees or so if bumped (one of the lifters is at the top of a lobe when the timing mark is aligned on that side), no problem, scares people, just move it back with a box end wrench.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-27-2019, 03:07 AM
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Not bad if you are mechanically inclined, takes the better part of a day depending on the tools you have (air tools, impact, quality jack and stands, not a walmart jack) and what space you have (garage, car port, level driveway vs the parking lot at your apartment complex). Really if you are even asking the question to begin with you should probably have a shop do it.

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-27-2019, 10:43 PM
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If you can rent the OEM Chrysler pulley from AutoZone, radiator doesn't need to come out, just the fans. But... the harmonic balancer doesn't have to come off also as the cover is in two pieces which bolt around it. I didn't know that and pulled it off anyway...

Overall, I did it and it wasn't that hard. Just make sure the belt is tight enough when you're done. After I did mine, it lasted a week and my car wouldn't start again as the belt slipped. I made it pretty tight the second time and no issues since. I also used those videos to prepare myself...
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-31-2019, 08:13 PM
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I've done it at least a half dozen times. One time, I broke one of the jaws of my puller, trying to remove a particularly tight dampener/pulley. That time I was able to force the belt around it, but I don't like doing that. I've since bought a puller kit, that besides the puller, has a "ring-looking" wrench, too, which holds the crank pulley from turning while wrenching on the puller. I highly recommend that kit, I think it was less than $50. Make sure you start removing the belt with all(3) the dots lined up. You start at the crank toothed pulley and wrap the new belt on in a CCW direction. You need to keep the belt slack free as you proceed around all the pulleys. It can help if you have two extra hands, but it is not absolutely necessary. I have used the Dayco "kit" the last few times, and I highly recommend it, too. It comes with the belt, water pump, hydraulic tensioner, and tensioner pulley/bearing assembly.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-31-2019, 08:23 PM
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Nice thing about the 1st gens (1993-1997) is they're Non-Interference clearance engines. If you fook up setting the timing when replacing the belt it won't crash valves and be a costly mistake. Just reset all your timing marks and thread the belt again until it's verified good.

No such luck on the 2nd gens!
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 09:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the replies!

Concerning belt slack, is it hard to get proper tension opposite the tension pulley (driver's side) of the belt? One neighborhood mechanic said that he likes to back off a notch on the driver's side cam pulley. Now quite sure what he meant by that though.

So far, I've found a Gates kit for about $230.00. (includes new pulley and tensioner)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronbo View Post
Nice thing about the 1st gens (1993-1997) is they're Non-Interference clearance engines. If you fook up setting the timing when replacing the belt it won't crash valves and be a costly mistake. Just reset all your timing marks and thread the belt again until it's verified good.

No such luck on the 2nd gens!
That's what the video said, but two neighborhood mechanics say otherwise.

Last edited by rusty; 08-04-2019 at 09:27 PM.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 09:52 PM
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Are you sure THEY know what they're talking about? Have they actually worked on a 1st gen LH?
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 10:14 PM
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Key words: 1st gen.

The 2nd gen. 3.5 is not the same engine as 1st gen. and is interference. They may not know there are two different LH 3.5s.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 10:48 PM
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Get the belt in place on the crank sprocket and use a rag or shim of some sort to keep it from falling down, then get it over the driver's side cam, use an 18mm wrench to move the cam over until the teeth fall into place then turn back the other way to take out the slack, timing mark should be between the dots, go back and adjust if needed, then use another rag or shim to keep the belt from coming off the sprocket and proceed to do the same thing for the passenger side sprocket (timing mark usually ends up between the dots or more towards the inner dot). Then install the tensioner and release the pin (if installing a new tensioner). If reusing the old one, make sure it does not compress by hand. The spring in it should be stiff.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-05-2019, 12:17 AM
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the dayco kit I used was around $150 online, IIRC.
I have no idea what the point is behind the suggestion to back off a tooth on the cam sprocket. If your engine was running ok before you changed the belt and the dots all lined up, then I would not try to change the cam timing.
The first time I did it, I had some plastic shims which I shoved in between the belt and the timing housing to hold the belt tight against the teeth while I stretched/ routed the belt over the next pulley.
After you've pulled the pin on the hydraulic tensioner, and screwed the tensioner all the way in, I rotate the engine thru a couple of revolutions to make sure all the dots still are lined up.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-06-2019, 06:33 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rusty View Post
So far, I've found a Gates kit for about $230.00. (includes new pulley and tensioner)
Found this at Amazon....

https://www.amazon.com/Gates-TCKWP25...ysler+Concorde

Not sure if it's the same Gates kit I saw for order in the parts store.


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Ronbo, I'll have to followup with the mechanics about the 1st and 2nd generation differences. They could be wrong since you guys deal with these cars quite often.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-06-2019, 06:43 PM
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That looks like the correct kit for a 1st gen 3.5L. 1993-1997. Decent price too.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-07-2019, 05:20 AM
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Sites say the TCKWP255 doesn't fit my 1993... interesting. Says it's for 95-97 models.

But the TCKWP219 kit fits and it doesn't come with the tensioner. They must be different.
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