Nissan Maxima 1993-1998 Repair Guide

Timing Chain and Sprockets

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



VE30DE Engine

See Figures 1 through 26

The cylinder heads and the oil pan must be removed in order for the lower timing chain to be removed.



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Fig. Fig. 1: Exploded view of the VE30DE timing chain assemblies and related components

  1. Remove the upper intake manifold collector.
  2.  
  3. Remove the fuel rail.
  4.  
  5. Remove the valve covers.
  6.  
  7. Remove the upper chain guides between the camshafts.
  8.  



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Fig. Fig. 2: Remove the three bolts retaining the upper chain guides ...



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Fig. Fig. 3: ... and lift it from the cylinder head

  1. Remove the upper chain covers on the cylinder heads.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 4: To allow access to the camshaft sprocket bolts, unbolt the upper timing chain cover ...



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Fig. Fig. 5: ... and carefully pry the cover away from the cylinder head

  1. Set the number one piston at TDC on the compression stroke by aligning the timing marks on the crankshaft damper.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 6: The number one cylinder is at TDC when the timing marks are aligned as shown

  1. Check that the mating marks on the sprockets are aligned as shown in the illustration. If not, the crankshaft should be rotated another 360°.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 7: It may be helpful to paint marks on the chain and sprockets if the marks are not easily visible

  1. Remove the camshaft position sensor. Mark the position of the sensor before removal to help keep the ignition timing correct.
  2.  
  3. Remove the upper chain tensioners.
  4.  



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Fig. Fig. 8: Remove the two bolts attaching the upper timing chain tensioners



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Fig. Fig. 9: When installing the chain tensioners, carefully press the tensioner in and lock it in position with the clip

  1. Using a back up wrench, remove the bolts which retain the camshaft sprockets.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 10: Always use a back up wrench on the camshaft when removing the sprocket bolts; NEVER use the chain to provide tension



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Fig. Fig. 11: Remove the intake and exhaust camshaft sprockets and set the timing chain under the camshafts



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Fig. Fig. 12: Always lubricate the threads of the camshaft sprocket bolts to obtain a correct torque reading

  1. Remove the exhaust camshafts. Follow the numerical sequence.
  2.  
  3. Remove the both cylinder heads.
  4.  
  5. Remove the oil pan.
  6.  
  7. Remove the crankshaft damper.
  8.  
  9. Remove the water pipe.
  10.  
  11. Remove the water pump pulley and the water pump.
  12.  
  13. Remove the oil pan, the crankshaft damper, the oil strainer and the oil filter bracket.
  14.  
  15. Remove the timing chain cover, the alternator adjusting bar and the upper timing chains.
  16.  
  17. Remove the lower timing chain guides, the idler sprockets and the lower timing chain.
  18.  



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Fig. Fig. 13: Lower timing chain and related components

To install:


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Fig. Fig. 14: Positions for applying liquid gasket to the timing chain related components

  1. Install the crankshaft sprocket on the crankshaft.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 15: Make sure the crankshaft sprocket is installed in the proper direction

  1. Make sure the No. 1 cylinder is at the TDC of it's compression stroke.
  2.  
  3. Install the right idler sprocket and timing chain guides.
  4.  



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Fig. Fig. 16: Install the lower timing chain guides and the right side idler sprocket to the engine block

  1. Position the lower timing chain on the right idler sprocket by aligning the mating mark on the right idler sprocket with the silver mating mark on the lower timing chain.
  2.  
  3. Install the left idler sprocket with the lower timing chain; align the mating marks on the lower timing chain with the mating marks on the left idler sprocket and crankshaft sprocket. Install the chain guide and the chain tensioner.
  4.  



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Fig. Fig. 17: Line up the mating marks on the lower timing chain with the marks on the sprockets

  1. Position the upper timing chains on the idler sprockets by aligning the mating marks on the idler sprockets with the gold mating marks on the upper timing chains.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 18: Have an assistant hold the upper timing chains in position while installing the lower timing chain cover

  1. Install the oil pump drive spacer, the timing chain cover and the alternator adjusting bar by performing the following procedures:
    1. Remove all traces of sealant from the mating surfaces of the timing chain cover and the engine block.
    2.  
    3. Using liquid sealant, apply a continuous bead to the mating surface of the timing chain cover.
    4.  
    5. Wipe excessive sealant from the cylinder head mounting surfaces.
    6.  

  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 19: Install the lower timing chain cover and carefully place the upper timing chains over the sprockets



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Fig. Fig. 20: After the lower timing chain cover is installed, be sure to wipe the excess liquid gasket from the cylinder heads ...



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Fig. Fig. 21: ... and the engine block/oil pan mating surface

  1. Install the oil filter bracket, the oil strainer, the crankshaft damper and the oil pan.
  2.  
  3. Install the water pump by performing the following procedures:
    1. Remove all traces of sealant from the mating surface of the water pump.
    2.  
    3. Remove all traces of sealant from the mating surface of the engine.
    4.  
    5. Using liquid sealant, apply a continuous bead to the mating surface of the water pump.
    6.  

  4.  
  5. Install the water pump pulley.
  6.  
  7. Install the water pipe by performing the following procedures:
    1. Torque bolt a and b finger-tight.
    2.  
    3. Torque bolt c to 12-15 ft. lbs. (16-21 Nm).
    4.  
    5. Torque bolt a to 2.2-6.5 ft. lbs. (3-9 Nm).
    6.  
    7. Torque bolt b to 12-15 ft. lbs. (16-21 Nm).
    8.  
    9. Torque bolt a to 12-15 ft. lbs. (16-21 Nm).
    10.  

  8.  
  9. Rotate the crankshaft counterclockwise, until the No. 1 piston is set at approx. 120° before TDC on the compression stroke, to prevent interference of the valves and pistons.
  10.  



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Fig. Fig. 22: The crankshaft should be rotated counterclockwise 120°from TDC before cylinder head installation

  1. Install the cylinder heads.
  2.  
  3. Install the camshafts, the camshaft brackets and the rocker arms.
  4.  
  5. Position the right side exhaust camshaft at about 10 o'clock position and the left side exhaust camshaft at about 12 o'clock position.
  6.  



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Fig. Fig. 23: Position the camshafts as shown before tightening the brackets

  1. Install the right side VTC assembly and the right camshaft sprocket. Align the mating marks on the right upper timing chain with the mating marks on the right VTC assembly and the right camshaft sprocket.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 24: When the mating marks on the right (rear) cylinder head exhaust camshaft are matched, note the intake side is not yet in line

  1. Install the right timing chain tensioner. Before installing the chain tensioner, press-in sleeve until the hook can be engaged on the pin; make sure the hook used to retain the chain tensioner is released.
  2.  

There are 2 types of chain tensioners; be careful not to install the left chain tensioner onto the right cylinder head.



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Fig. Fig. 25: Note the difference between the two upper chain tensioners; be careful not to install them incorrectly

  1. Rotate the crankshaft clockwise to set the No. 1 piston at the TDC of it's compression stroke.
  2.  
  3. Install the left side VTC assembly and the left camshaft sprocket. Align the mating marks on the left upper timing chain with the mating marks on the left VTC assembly and the left camshaft sprocket.
  4.  
  5. Install the left chain tensioner; make sure the upper timing chains are in the correct positions.
  6.  
  7. Install the camshaft position sensor; make sure the position of the camshaft and rotor position of the camshaft position sensor are aligned.
  8.  



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Fig. Fig. 26: Line up the camshaft position sensor with the camshaft before installation

  1. Install the upper timing chain covers.
  2.  
  3. Install the upper chain guides on both cylinder heads.
  4.  
  5. Install the valve covers.
  6.  
  7. Install any parts removed in the reverse order of removal. When installing the VTC solenoid valve, always use new O-rings and lubricate the O-rings with engine oil.
  8.  

VQ30DE Engine

See Figures 27 through 40



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Fig. Fig. 27: Exploded view of the VQ30DE timing chain and related components

  1. Drain the engine oil and coolant from the engine.
  2.  
  3. Remove the splash shields from under the vehicle.
  4.  
  5. Remove the drive belts and the idler pulley bracket.
  6.  
  7. Remove the power steering pump.
  8.  
  9. Remove the camshaft and crankshaft position sensors.
  10.  



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Fig. Fig. 28: Be careful when removing the camshaft and crankshaft position sensors; they are delicate and are easily damaged

  1. Remove the intake manifold collector.
  2.  
  3. Remove the fuel rail assembly.
  4.  
  5. Remove the valve covers from the cylinder heads.
  6.  
  7. Set the number 1 piston at Top Dead Center (TDC) on the compression stroke by rotating the crankshaft until the marks are in line. The cam lobes for the number 1 cylinder should be pointing outward. Do not rotate the engine from this step onward.
  8.  
  9. Remove the crankshaft damper.
  10.  
  11. Remove the air conditioning compressor and bracket. Use safety wire to support it while it is unbolted from the engine.
  12.  
  13. Remove the water pump cover.
  14.  



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Fig. Fig. 29: The water pump cover should be removed to remove the front timing chain cover

  1. Remove the timing chain cover bolts, in the sequence shown in the illustration.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 30: Front timing chain cover bolt removal sequence

  1. Using the notch on the top of the timing chain case, insert a suitable tool and carefully separate the timing chain front cover from the rear cover.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 31: Use the notch in the front timing chain cover to pry it from the rear cover

  1. Remove the internal chain guide and the upper chain guide.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 32: Timing chain guide locations

  1. Remove the timing chain tensioner and slack side chain guide. Use a pin to retain the timing chain tensioner.
  2.  
  3. Remove the right and left hand sprocket 1ST bolts.
  4.  



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Fig. Fig. 33: Always use a backup wrench on the camshaft when loosening the bolts; NEVER use the chain to provide tension

  1. Mark the sprockets and the chain with paint for proper alignment during installation.
  2.  
  3. Remove the sprockets and the timing chain.
  4.  
  5. Remove the lower chain guide near the crankshaft.
  6.  
  7. Using small pins, push the camshaft tensioners inward and lock them in place.
  8.  



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Fig. Fig. 34: Push in on the chain tensioners and hold them in place by placing a pin in the holes as shown

  1. Apply paint to the camshaft sprockets and chains to mark their positions for proper alignment during installation.
  2.  
  3. Using a wrench on the camshafts, hold the camshaft stationary while loosening the sprocket bolts.
  4.  
  5. Remove the sprockets and chains from the camshafts.
  6.  

To install:


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Fig. Fig. 35: Details for applying liquid gasket to the timing chain covers and related components

  1. Clean the gasket material from the front and rear timing chain cases, including the bolt holes.
  2.  
  3. Install the crankshaft sprocket. Make sure the mating marks on the sprocket are facing to the front of the engine.
  4.  



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Fig. Fig. 36: When installing the crankshaft sprocket, be sure it is properly positioned

  1. Install the lower chain guide on the dowel pin. Make sure the "front" mark on the guide is facing up.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 37: The arrow should be pointing up when the lower chain guide is installed

  1. Align the marks on the camshaft sprockets as shown in the illustration and install them to the camshafts.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 38: Be sure the camshaft sprockets are mounted on their respective camshafts; the intake camshaft sprockets differ from the exhaust



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Fig. Fig. 39: Align the mating marks on the chains with the sprockets, then install them onto the camshafts

Be careful not to confuse the intake and exhaust camshaft sprockets. The exhaust camshaft sprockets are thicker than the intake camshaft sprockets.

  1. Remove the pins from the camshaft chain tensioners.
  2.  
  3. Install the main timing chain on the crankshaft sprocket and water pump sprocket. Then install the camshaft drive sprockets as shown in the illustration. Dip the camshaft sprocket bolts in fresh engine oil and torque them to 88-95 ft.lbs. (119-128 Nm.).
  4.  



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Fig. Fig. 40: Align the mating marks on the chain with the sprockets, then place the chain on the water pump sprocket

  1. Install the chain guides. Install the main timing chain tensioner.
  2.  

After checking that all of the mating marks on the chains and sprockets are correct, temporarily install the crankshaft damper and SLOWLY rotate the engine by hand at least one full revolution to verify the camshaft/crankshaft timing is correct. If the crankshaft stops suddenly, a piston is hitting a valve. Do NOT force the engine to rotate; bent valves will result. Check the mating marks on the sprockets and the chains, and perform any procedures as necessary to correct misalignment.

  1. Apply liquid gasket to the timing chain cover as shown in the illustration.
  2.  
  3. Following the tightening sequence shown in the illustration, tighten the timing chain cover bolts to the specified torque.
  4.  
  5. Apply liquid gasket to the water pump cover and install it to the front timing chain cover.
  6.  
  7. Install the rocker (valve) covers.
  8.  
  9. Install the intake manifold collector.
  10.  
  11. Install the upper and lower oil pans.
  12.  
  13. Install the exhaust header pipe.
  14.  
  15. Install the engine mount and bracket.
  16.  
  17. Install the center member assembly. Remove the engine from the hoist.
  18.  
  19. Install the crankshaft damper.
  20.  
  21. Install the crankshaft and camshaft position sensors.
  22.  
  23. Install the A/C compressor and bracket to the engine block.
  24.  
  25. Install the power steering pump.
  26.  
  27. Install the accessory drive belts and the idler pulley.
  28.  
  29. Fill the engine with the appropriate quantity of engine oil and coolant.
  30.  

The engine may produce a rattling noise when it is started. Run the engine at around 3,000RPM in neutral to purge the air from the hydraulic chain tensioner.

  1. Start the engine and check for leaks from the sealing surfaces.
  2.  
  3. Install the timing chain cover.
  4.  

 
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