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Discussion Starter #1
It's been the better part of forever since I've replaced the timing belt on this car, so I've finally dug in and started. I think every other time I've done this job I had the coolant lines out, and now, as I try to remove the upper timing belt covers, I'm wondering if it's required. It seems to me like the forward cover isn't going to clear past the cam pulley unless it can swing out where the hose/pipe is. Yes, no, maybe???

I haven't worked on the other (rear) one yet- anyone care to remind me what's got to come off to get that one out?

I'm quickly reminding myself why I moved towards RWD cars ~10 years ago.
 

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Bad Brad why have you not stayed 164 qualified? What is a RWD but just another car?

Here is how to make it easier on yourself:

Use sparkplug socket and remove gauge temp sensor next to front TB cover. Now if hidden bolt is in cover you can remove that bolt and once you have lower cover below crank pulley off you can get upper front off pretty easy.

If rigid steel pipe bolted to a/c compressor remove front head light to access hidden 13mm bolt.

As for coolant hoses besides upper and lower does engine have oil cooler hoses/pipes in front of rear cover? If so cut and replace hoses at rear of thermostat housing.

Also disconnect upper dog bone, unlatch air cleaner top half, remove driver's side wheel and front inner fender liner, support tranny remove tranny mount let tranny down on subframe. Now once you have all bolts out of rear TB cover you can get it off without breaking it against inner fender metal and cam pulley.

Mid rear TB cover over tensioner has hidden bolt in P/S pump hex stud.

If later 164 12v with 1" coolant pipe over rear valve cover there is a 17mm bolt holding it to rear head near aux pulley. Hidden hole in chassis under rear inner fender liner behind strut spring to insert extension and then socket.

Tranny mount removal is key to making job easier.
 

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for 24 v much abridged version

If its 24 V

no need to disco the upper hose from EPR -- just remove the clamp bolt and slide it 3/4 inch away, front cover will clear (at least it does on my 2 cars)

Dont need to remove the coolant temp sender, can reach the 10mm bolt from pass side wheel, with a 10mm open -end snap on soex10m wrench -- but admittedly its hard to put back in without taking the sender out!

Snap on 1/4 inch drive universal sockets are the BOMB. If you can afford it, buy a nice snap on 1/4 drive ratchet (tx72) and a few of those uni sockets (I have 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15) plus a 10, 11, 12, 13,14 deep well and you are stylin and profilin! Now with those tools, I go from car parked to front and rear covers off in less than an hour with a beer to spare. Hassle-most part is rear wheel liner cover on the 24V car unless you relieve the tang that goes behind the brake lines -- otherwise its a wrestlin match
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the feedback guys. The car is an early '91 so 12V and no oil cooler.

I had no problem getting all the bolts out for the covers - indeed I do own a set of SK 1/4" drive swivel sockets - the 10mm was used today! :)

I did fight and got the rear cover out, but good to know about the tranny mount drop - I'll do that before I put it back in.

The front one was still giving me grief but I was in the mood for quitting at that point so I did. A new day and some good light will work wonders I'm hoping.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Got distracted with other stuff so finally got back to this project last night. Managed to get the front upper cover off, but not before busting off that corner that gets fastened by that hidden bolt (yes, it was removed). I think I have a spare cover, but I'm inclined to put this one back as-is and have an easier to remove cover in the future.

Didn't expect to lose a full gallon of coolant when removing the two main hoses that go to the water pump - good thing I had my big pan on the floor. I think next time I'll just drain the radiator first and not splash the whole front of the engine with coolant.

I always fight with the belt getting it on - need to find a better way I think - searching next, but feel free to direct me somewhere.
 

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The timing belt job on the 164 is very tedious. Take each item at a time and allow lots of time to do the job. Even the reassembly takes time even though you now know how everything goes. Be patient and it will get done. And for peets sakes, don't break anymore bits. 164 parts don't grow on trees anymore. ;) I find the buried P/S belt under (and then out from) the timing belt cover to be especially annoying. I understand how some mechanics don't like working on these cars. I happen to like the car, so I put up with some (lots of) things.
Charles
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The timing belt job on the 164 is very tedious. Take each item at a time and allow lots of time to do the job.
True, but it shouldn't be taking TWO WEEKS! :D

I find the buried P/S belt under (and then out from) the timing belt cover to be especially annoying. I understand how some mechanics don't like working on these cars.
I had forgotten about that one at first, and then I remembered, "Oh, that's right, I bought a Snap-on distributor wrench just for that bolt!" I'm pretty sure I last used that wrench 13 years ago, last time I did this job.

And I was thinking precisely the same thing last night.... "I totally get why some mechanics refuse to work on this car."
 

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You guys are discussing what to do once the fender liners are out. But before that, what about the brake line connection mounted on top of one of the liners? Does it have to be disconnected and plugged? On my car it appears that that's the only way you can get both liners out. Yet I don't recall doing so when I last replaced a T belt (so long ago that my a memory may be lacking).

Mac D
 

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yeah true

But what I did way back when was to take a hacksaw blade, and make a top-to-bottom cut (a very thin slot) at the place where the fender liner goes behind the metal brake loop. This way, I can remove the liner without having to remove the brake lines, and since the slot is less than the width of the hacksaw blade, it does not open up the inner liner to any real degree.

Yes I admit its a short cut and a purist wont like it, but I also can tell you it has saved me HOURS of time on serp belt/t belt/ AC, etc

bob
 

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Thanks for the feedback guys. The car is an early '91 so 12V and no oil cooler.

I had no problem getting all the bolts out for the covers - indeed I do own a set of SK 1/4" drive swivel sockets - the 10mm was used today! :)

I did fight and got the rear cover out, but good to know about the tranny mount drop - I'll do that before I put it back in.

The front one was still giving me grief but I was in the mood for quitting at that point so I did. A new day and some good light will work wonders I'm hoping.


Did you remove the temp sensor next to timing belt cover to get to hidden bolt and to be able to get front cover out easier? Did I list that to be removed don't remember?
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Did you remove the temp sensor next to timing belt cover to get to hidden bolt and to be able to get front cover out easier?
I did not, but there's a good reason why I didn't need to. Apparently I never put that bolt back in last time! :D

So when I cracked that portion off getting the cover out, I didn't worry too much. Now I have a better excuse for not bolting that back - the bolt-hole doesn't exist! In hindsight, I realize that I should have just taken the two big hoses off first. Been so long I had forgotten that I needed to do that any way.

New belt is on with a different hydraulic tensioner in fixed mode (no oil feed). I still need to button everything back up but I ran it for a bit tonight and the belt is tracking in the center of the pulleys as it should. The old one was tracking to the outside edge - no damage to the belt that I could see, so I figured I'd best throw the other tensioner I had at it (although I couldn't see anything wrong with that either).

I'll also add, the rear cover went back in without too much effort. All I did was crack the longitudinal dogbone bolt loose and put a jack under the engine, jacking it up just the little bit it would move without un-bolting anything else. Surprisingly, that seemed to make a world of difference.
 

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Folks,

I have done three T belt "jobs" on three different Alfa's over the last three months.
Here is some input which I hope will make the experience more enjoyable.

Beginners should work with the BB sticky notes, especially the detailed and meticulous write up on this subject by Alfisto Steve.
(When all else fails even the old hands go back to Steve's write-up.)

Now for my humble input with regard to "fast tracking" two of the hardest steps:

I am assuming the passenger side is jacked with front wheel and inner fender covers removed etc.
IE: There is a bunch of "easy" stuff one needs to remove before the following items instantly terminate good progress.

The T belt covers can be removed with the engine in place but it takes a lot of careful "upwards wigglement" so as not to break anything.
The cover bolts are tedious to remove but this takes about 10 minutes for them all with the usual #10 socket and wrench as applicable.
I did this with an engine that needed a T belt timing check (one fine evening after work) rather than replacement as I was not inclined to remove much.
When time permits (+30 to 60 min) it is better to follow Alfisto's method of removing the forward driver side engine mount to tilt the engine for easier access to the covers and the belt itself.

The hardest part (to my mind) is to loosen/tighten the power steering belt which must come off the pulleys in order to extricate/install the T belt.

If you have the required special tool (or a tool you fabricate) to loosen/tighten the nut hidden behind the P/S hose connection to the P/S pump you are good to go.
If not this becomes a major problem!

The solution is to remove the obstructing P/S hose bolt and catch about a cup of P/S fluid for discard.
All the P/S pump housing bolts become easily accessible with #13 on the end of a long extension, but ensure the P/S hose end and inlet orifice are protected against dirt which is usually prevalent in that area.
This rigmarole takes about 5 minutes as opposed to hours trying to get behind that P/S hose connection.
Remember of course to re-fill the P/S fluid and bleed the P/S system which also takes about 5 minutes.

Ta,

Neville.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
If you have the required special tool (or a tool you fabricate) to loosen/tighten the nut hidden behind the P/S hose connection to the P/S pump you are good to go.
If not this becomes a major problem!
Agreed. I went so far as to get the Snap-On wrench for this job, but I imagine a less expensive "universal" 13mm distributor wrench would be sufficient. I hate un-bolting hydraulic lines when I don't have to, so I wouldn't consider doing this job without the correct tool.

After taking my first real drive with the car since the new timing belt, I've found that the belt is once again tracking to the outer edge of the pulleys. But that's really a different topic, so I'm going to start a new thread on that or find an old one to dig up.
 
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