Page 14 - Timing Belt Retensioning

After putting the service covers on the car...

... it's time to check the timing belt tension. I removed the air intake tube on the passenger side...

...and removed the upper cam cover 10 mm bolt, visible between the two hoses. Once I got this
bolt out, I proceeded to wrestle the cover free of the two hoses. What a pain in the a$$!
Even after loosening the coolant cap, the cover and hoses still gave me a hard way to go.
Getting this cover off and back on is the hardest part of the whole procedure.

With the cover off, the cam pully and timing belt are exposed. This condition of my belt is very good.
My PO had all this work done when he bought the car in Colorado before he drove it back to Maryland.
The belt has about 15,000 miles on it. After checking for cracks and fraying, I was relieved to find no
damage. I also removed the oil dipstick to get better access to the tension adjusting bolt on the belt tensioner.

Next I turned the crankshaft 2 full clockwise rotations (toward the right side of picture) and lined
up the 0TDC mark with the pointer and....

...the cam pulley mark. Fortunately for me a previous mechanic had painted the mark white.

After inserting the Jay Kempf belt tension tool (59.00 + 2-day shipping from 928 Specialist)
on the belt per the mfg. I lifted the tool toward the back cover per instructions and discovered
that my belt tension was too tight! Notice the pointer going past the notch closest to my
right thumb. If the pointer was behind the other notch closest to the motor, the belt would have
been too loose. On a perfectly  tensioned belt  the pointer will be in between the notches.

Using a 19 mm stubby combination wrench, I loosened the the adjuster bolt
counter-clockwise until I got the pointer in between the notches.
After every check (about 3-4 times) I turned the crank two full
rotations until the crank and cam marks lined up.

Once satisfied with my results I replaced everything back in reverse order I had removed it.
After everything was back together I fired it up. Perfect. A slight tapping noise I had heard
was now gone. However, the fan clutch procedure was not as successful as the belt retensioning.
My next step is to replace the thermostat with a new 75 degree unit and refill the
cooling system with new Autobahn coolant.

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