The average replacement interval for a timing belt is approximately 60,000 miles (96,000km). If, however, the timing belt is inspected earlier or more frequently than suggested, and shows signs of wear or defects, the belt should be replaced at that time.
Inspect both sides of the timing belt. Replace the belt with a new one if any of the following conditions exist:
If none of these conditions exist, the belt does not need replacement unless it is at the recommended interval. The belt MUST be replaced at the recommended interval.
Removal & Installation
3.2L And 3.5L Engines
Use care when servicing a timing belt. Valve timing is absolutely critical to engine performance. If the valve timing marks on all drive sprockets are not properly aligned, engine damage will result. If only the belt and tensioner are being serviced, do not loosen the camshaft drive sprockets unless they are to be replaced. The sprockets have oversized openings and can be rotated several degrees in each direction on their shafts. This means the sprockets must be re-timed, requiring some special tools.
- Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the Precautions section.
- Disconnect the negative battery cable.
- Rotate the engine to Top Dead Center (TDC) on the compression stroke for cylinder No. 1.
- Release the fuel system pressure using the recommended procedure.
- Place a pan under the radiator and drain the coolant.
Remove or disconnect the following:
Radiator and cooling fan assemblies
- If the timing belt is to be reused, mark the timing belt with the running direction for installation.
Align the camshaft sprockets with the marks on the rear covers.
Timing belt and tensioner
If it is necessary to service the camshaft sprockets, use the following procedure:
Hold the camshaft sprocket with a 36mm box end wrench, loosen and remove the sprocket retaining bolt and washer.
NOTETo remove the camshaft sprocket retainer bolt while the engine is in the vehicle, it may be necessary to raise that side of the engine due to the length of the retainer bolt. The right bolt is 8 3 / 8 in. (213mm) long, while the left bolt is 10 in. (254mm) long. These bolts are not interchangeable and their original location during removal should be noted.
- Remove the camshaft sprocket from the camshaft. The camshaft sprockets are not interchangeable from side-to-side.
Remove the crankshaft sprocket using Puller L-4407A.
- Hold the camshaft sprocket with a 36mm box end wrench, loosen and remove the sprocket retaining bolt and washer.
If it was necessary to remove the camshaft sprockets, use the following procedure:
NOTEThis procedure can only be used when the camshaft sprockets have been loosened or removed from the camshafts. Each sprocket has a D shaped hole that allows it to be rotated several degrees in each direction on its shaft. This design must be timed with the engine to ensure proper performance.
- Install the crankshaft sprocket, using tool C-4685-C1, thrust bearing, washer and 12mm bolt.
- When the camshaft sprockets are loosened or removed, the camshafts must be timed to the engine. Install the Camshaft Alignment tools 6642-A, to the rear of the cylinder heads. These tools lock the camshafts in the proper position.
Preload the belt tensioner as follows:
- Place the tensioner in a vise the same way it is mounted on the engine.
- Slowly compress the plunger into the tensioner body.
- When the plunger is compressed into the tensioner body, install a pin through the body and plunger to retain the plunger in place until the tensioner is installed.
Install both camshaft sprockets to the appropriate shafts. The left camshaft sprocket has the Distributorless Ignition System (DIS) pick-up as part of the sprocket.
NOTEThe right bolt is 8 3 / 8 in. (213mm) long, while the left bolt is 10 in. (254mm) long. These bolts are not interchangeable.
- Apply Loctite®271, to the threads of the camshaft sprocket retainer bolts and install to the appropriate shafts. Do not tighten the bolts at this time.
- Align the camshaft sprockets between the marks on the rear belt covers.
- Align the crankshaft sprocket with the TDC mark on the oil pump cover.
- Install the timing belt, starting at the crankshaft sprocket and going in a counterclockwise direction. After the belt is installed on the right sprocket, keep tension on the belt until it is past the tensioner pulley.
- Holding the tensioner pulley against the belt, install the timing belt tensioner into the housing and tighten to 21 ft. lbs. (28 Nm).
When the tensioner is in place, pull the retainer pin out to allow tensioner to extend to the pulley bracket.
NOTEBe sure that the timing marks on the cam sprockets are still between the marks on the rear cover.
- Remove the spark plug in the No.1 cylinder and install a dial indicator to check for TDC of the piston. Rotate the crankshaft until the piston is exactly at TDC.
- Hold the camshaft sprocket hex with a 36mm wrench and tighten the right camshaft sprocket bolt to 75 ft. lbs. (102 Nm) plus an additional 90 degree turn. Tighten the left camshaft sprocket bolt to 85 ft. lbs. (115 Nm) plus an additional 90 degree turn.
- Remove the dial indicator. Install the spark plug and tighten to 20 ft. lbs. (28 Nm).
- Remove the camshaft alignment tools from the back of the cylinder heads and install the cam covers with new O-rings.
- Tighten the fasteners to 20 ft. lbs. (27 Nm). Repeat this procedure on the other camshaft.
- Rotate the crankshaft sprocket two revolutions and check for proper alignment of the timing marks on the camshaft and the crankshaft. If the timing marks do not align, repeat the procedure.
- Before installing, inspect the sealer on the stamped steel cover. If some sealer is missing, use MOPAR Silicone Rubber Adhesive sealant to replace the missing sealer.
Install or connect the following:
Lower belt cover behind the crankshaft damper, if necessary
- Refill and bleed the cooling system.
- Connect the negative battery cable.
- With the radiator cap off so coolant can be added, run the engine. Watch for leaks and listen for unusual engine noises.