SUBARUPictures of how I Replaced the Timing Belt on the Subaru Legacy Outback 2.2 engine.


Crankshaft Pulley:
Big rusty pulley on front of crankshaft, outside of timing belt covers. This drives the a/c and alternator belts.
Crankshaft Sprocket:
A toothed sprocket located on the crank shaft, behind the Crank Pulley, which drives the timing belt.
Cam Shaft Sprockets:
Big sprockets, one on each cam shaft. They have twice as many teeth as the Crank Sprocket so the pistons will take 4 strokes for every 2 cycles of the cams.
Belt Idlers (2 smooth, one toothed bearing):
Bearings that direct the belt around corners.
Belt Tensioner (Bearing):
Spring loaded bearing that pushes on the belt.
Belt Tensioner Adjuster:
The pneumatic plunger that pushes on the Belt Tensioner and keeps it tight.

Changing the Timing Belt

I changed the Timing belt twice. Both times the real motivation was to fix several oil leaks. Freakin Subarus. The first time I took the whole engine out, the next time I left the engine in. The first time took a week or two, the second time took one day. I will show one procedure, with pictures from either mixed together just to confuse you.

But first, lets pay some bills:

  1. I took out the radiator to make some room to work.

  2. I covered the A/C condenser with cardboard to protect the fins.

  3. At this point I either removed the engine, or not. Then I removed the covers over the alternator and condenser. I loosened the alternator and the P/S pump pulleys and removed the two belts.
    alternator covers

  4. With the engine in, I loosened the crank pulley bolt with a big ass wrench braced on the engine well, then just barely "blipped" the starter to pop it loose. Ass wrenches come in many sizes. I only have the big ass wrench and the medium ass wrench. The adjustable ass wrench is not any good.
    braced wrench

  5. With the engine out, I locked the flywheel in place by jamming a screwdriver through an inspection hole into the flywheel, then used a medium ass wrench and my super human strength.
    Flywheel     Pulley

  6. I removed crank pulley to expose crank sprocket. I removed side timing belt covers to expose cam sprockets.
    Remove some junk

  7. I removed the middle timing belt cover, and put the pulley back on to rotate the engine to line up timing marks.

  8. With the engine out, I rebuilt the oil pump, replaced the water pump, bearings, tensioner, tensioner adjuster, and camshaft oil seals. With the engine in, I replaced the camshaft oil seals.

  9. If I didn't replace the tensioner adjuster, I SLOWLY, over a period of a few hours, recompressed the adjuster in a vice.
    tensioner compression

  10. Then to hold it in the open position, I "fabricated" a new pin out of an office paper clip.

  11. There are the timing marks all ligned up. I aligned the timing marks on the sprockets to the marks on the back of the timing belt cover or engine.
    timing marks

  12. I put on the new belt and lined up the marks, then used clamps to keep them there. Give em the clamps! The clamps!
    timing marks clamped     timing marks clamped     timing marks clamped

  13. I installed the last pulley and the tensioner, released the tensioner adjuster, and there it is.

  14. I reinstalled the covers, and I tightened it up.

  15. Next I sold out to make 02ยข so I can fulfill my lifelong dream of owning a 1986 944 with blown head gaskets.

    But no minivans!

  16. Then I finished my beer.

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Think: Cars are expensive, powerful, and heavy.   Before I start work, I face the possibility that I will destroy my vehicle, my own life, and innocent pedestrians' lives.   If anyone messes with a 4000 lb machine capable of 100 mph, these are real possibilities.   If I get in over my head, I call a professional mechanic.   The information on this website is provided only for entertainment purposes, and it is not intended as advice on how to service a vehicle.   For all you know I made this up.   Don`t believe everything you read on the internet.

Disclaimer: The technical information in these documents is provided without any warranty whatsoever and at no cost.   All information is in general terms and is not meant to apply to your particular situation, be current at the time you read it, or even be correct in the first place.   Improperly maintained vehicles can lead to serious injury, death, or unavoidable accidents. The author is not responsible for any errors on this site, and does not make any claim at all about the validity, safety, or veracity of the information contained on this website. Any work you choose to do or not to do on your vehicle is done at your own risk. The information on this site is not intended to serve as a replacement for professional advice, professional workmanship, dealer service, union labor, or psychological counseling.   The author disclaims any and all liability directly or indirectly arising from the application or use of any information or idea contained on this or any other web site.   By opening this page, you agree to never sue anyone ever or allow anyone to be sued on your behalf.   The appropriate professional should be consulted regarding your specific condition.    BeerGarage.com does not take responsibility for the information posted on other sites to which it links.

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Last modified: 11/21/2014