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<!-- google_ad_section_start -->How to replace the timing belt tensioner...<!-- google_ad_section_end -->
How to replace the timing belt tensioner...
For a 1.2 8v engine
Published by Xen
07-05-2008
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How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

The timing belt tensioner is a common problem on the 1.2 8v engines in both the MK1 punto and the MK2. Signs of a failing tensioner is a grinding, whirring, squeaking or screeching (in very bad cases) noise coming from under the plastic cover on the drivers side of the engine. Sometimes the noise is constant, sometimes within only a particular rev range.

This guide is based on a MK2, but the MK1 is a similar proceedure, only the mounting point being slightly different. Its usually recommended to change the timing belt at the same time, but in some cases this isn't required - here I only replace the tensioner due to the belt being quite new anyway as can be seen by its moist rubbery look - if yours looks dry, its probably best to replace the belt aswell. If you don't feel like taking up that challenge, you should be OK anyway as this engine is non-interference and so in most cases, no damage is caused should the belt snap.

Time taken: Less than an hour.

So this is the car before any work commences....
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And here the new tensioner....
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Remove the air intake pipe by squeezing on the top and bottom of the hose and pulling....
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Support the engine with a jack, placing a piece of wood between the jack and the sump to prevent damage to the sump. Jack it up slowly until the car starts to raise slightly then stop immediatly. Now you are taking the weight of the engine on the jack....
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Undo the 4 13mm engine mount nuts equally half a turn at a time so as to not put strain on just one nut as you finish....
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Then the 3 17mm lock nuts holding the mount to the chassis...
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Move the mount out of the way...
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Then remove the second half of the mount with the 4 15mm bolts holding it to the engine...
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Pull the mount out of the way (you can just see the tensioner here now)...
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Pull the connection block out of the plastic cover and pull the wiring out of the cover all the way around...
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Remove the 3 10mm bolts holding the cover in place...
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Pull the top half of the cover away and the tensioner and camshaft pulley are now clearly exposed...
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Remove the final 10mm bolt to remove the bottom cover...
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Now the crankshaft pulley is exposed...
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It always helps to have an assistant
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Use tippex to create timing marks on both the crankshaft and camshaft with the belt - I couldn't find any tippex so nailvarnish had to suffice It can be hard to get a timing mark on the crankshaft but can be done if you have small hands. If not, the alternator must be loosened and the drive wheel for it also removed. It is important to get these marks as one slip of the belt while its slack, or a slight movement of either shaft will mess up your timing.
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Now remove the tensioner with the 13mm nut. As its removed, tension the belt with your finger to help prevent the belt moving...
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Keep hold of the little metal disc that holds the tensioner in place, and swap the tensioners (still holding tension in the belt with your finger.) In this photo, you can clearly see the condition of the old tensioner next to the newly installed tensioner. Force the tensioner forward to tension the belt fully and tighten the nut tight! To gauge the correct tension without the correct tool, you want it tight enough so that along the longest stretch of the belt, you cant quite twist it a quarter of a turn...
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Then reassemble in reverse order. Its worth mentioning when tightening the 4 13mm mount nuts, to do them half a turn at a time in a cross shpe - i.e. top right, bottom left, top left, bottom right and repeat until there all tight. Once there tight, remove the jack before tightening the 17mm locknuts from the mount to the chassis - this way the mount will settle in its natural positon. Then tighten the 17mm locknuts.

If you found this guide useful, please click thanks
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Old 07-05-2008   #1
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

Nice use of attachments
Thanks alainasdad thanked for this post
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Old 07-05-2008   #2
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

I didnt know how to do it and i just read this....

http://www.fiatforum.com/guides/4353...e-new-how.html

Didn't see the link sitting there at the bottom
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Old 07-05-2008   #3
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

do it again then, so i can delete this wrong one

i never know anyone to change the tensioner with out bothering to do the belt before though
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Last edited by dave; 07-05-2008 at 21:51.
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Old 07-05-2008   #4
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

I did my tensioner and not the belt in my thread, the belt has done less than 1k miles and its life is meant to be considerably more than that!
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Old 07-05-2008   #5
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

Quote Originally Posted by dave View Post
do it again then, so i can delete this wrong one

i never know anyone to change the tensioner with out bothering to do the belt before though
Like 5abr3, the belt was quite new anyway. water must have gotten to the tensioner since and had a field day could be that the seals wern't manufactured properly and let the grease out and water in.

I've sorted the pics now on this article, would it be possible for a very kind mod to delete all the pics named 'guide pics' in my gallery now since there not being used and are attached to the article now
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Old 19-11-2008   #6
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

cheers pal very useful information and i now know how to do it thanks very much
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Old 04-01-2009   #7
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

hi i have a 1.1 punto mk1 with the fire engine i think does this guide apply to that aswell as it all looks the same (apart from the mount) also is the 1.1 a non-interfierance engine?
thanks liam
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Old 05-01-2009   #8
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

Quote Originally Posted by lsd2007 View Post
hi i have a 1.1 punto mk1 with the fire engine i think does this guide apply to that aswell as it all looks the same (apart from the mount) also is the 1.1 a non-interfierance engine?
thanks liam
yes very very similar, as you mentioned only the mounting point differs from the mk1 1.1/1.2 and the mk2 1.2.
1.1 is also non-interference.
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Old 14-01-2009   #9
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

i know it says mk2 but i have a mk2 B 1.2. 8v. is this the same?or any differences?
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Old 15-01-2009   #10
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

Quote Originally Posted by salvo's yellow punto View Post
i know it says mk2 but i have a mk2 B 1.2. 8v. is this the same?or any differences?
Almost identical, except you have the camshaft sensor near the top of the belt cover that may need removing aswell. - chances are its just the wiring that needs moving out of the way though.
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Old 12-07-2009   #11
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Thumbs down Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

isnt it really stupid how they did this as this means the engine has to sit on a jack while the heads off to get it reskimmed as the head gasket has blown.
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Old 14-07-2009   #12
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

Yeh i know what you mean... i have no idea why they felt the need to move the mounting point from the block for the MK2... surely the block is a much better place to mount the engine from.
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Old 10-01-2010   #13
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

what happens about the insert in the middle of the tensioner, how do you take it from the old one and put it in the new one?
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Old 02-12-2010   #14
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Re: How to replace the timing belt tensioner...

Press it out or use a drift and knock it into a suitable size socket.

Fit the new one the same way but make sure the inner race is supported so the hammering wont bash the outer in any way. That will smash the bearing parts and you'll be needing a new one in no time.

With all this hassle and accepting post #5, for most folks its gotta be worth fitting a new cam belt at the same time.
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