Civic Timing belt slipped

Tiny
01CIVICEX
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 HONDA CIVIC
  • 1.7L
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • MANUAL
  • 190,000 MILES
The car was running odd like it was out of timing, idling rough and sputtering, pulled in the yard and shut it off intending to drive it to the repair shop the next morning, went to start it up and it sounded odd, like the engine was spinning way faster than it did before and would not start, took off the timing cover and there was a strip of cogs missing about eight inches long on the belt, I know about the timing marks on the camshaft and the crankshaft and where they need to be positioned, what I am wanting to know is since the camshaft obviously got out of sync, how do I tell when it is positioned correct in terms of orientation to the crankshaft so I know the camshaft is not 180 degrees out of sync with the crankshaft? Thank you
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Thursday, September 15th, 2016 AT 6:41 PM

16 Replies

Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
There is only one position the camshaft and the crankshaft can be in when the timing marks are lined up. When the marks of each are lined up there in time.
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Thursday, September 15th, 2016 AT 8:32 PM
Tiny
01CIVICEX
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So regardless of their current position, as long as I set the camshaft to TDC and the Crankshaft to TDC and put a new belt on it will be correctly timed?
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Friday, September 16th, 2016 AT 6:08 AM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Set the crankshaft marks to the TDC marks and set the camshaft with the up marks up and the camshaft TDC marks aligned. Also make sure you get the crankshaft to like 90 degrees before TDC when before you set the cam marks. Be very careful it is a interference fit engine. You could already have bent valves from what has happened with belt.
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Friday, September 16th, 2016 AT 7:18 AM
Tiny
01CIVICEX
  • MEMBER
Someone else said to take of the slipped belt, turn the Crankshaft to three O'clock, turn the camshaft until the three marks align TDC, then turn the crankshaft to align TDC, put on the new belt and check that all marks are still TDC and it will be correctly timed, does that sound right? Since someone else had said you had to make sure when turning the camshaft that it was on compression stroke and not exhaust stroke or it would bend the valves? I just do not want to set it wrong and ruin the valves.
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Friday, September 16th, 2016 AT 7:30 AM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
No you want all the pistons down when turning the cam so you do not bend valves. If it slipped then you could have bent valves already.
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Friday, September 16th, 2016 AT 12:48 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
You might as well stop right now and do a cylinder leakage test. Eight inches of missing teeth on the belt means you waited way too long to do the maintenance belt replacement. You are definitely going to have bent valves and the cylinder leakage test will show that. You should be able to find the tester at an auto parts store that rents or borrows tools. The clue is your observation of, "it sounded odd, like the engine was spinning way faster than it did before".

Also, if you think about your 180 degree concern, if you have the crankshaft and camshaft sprockets in perfect time, then you rotate the crankshaft one complete revolution, the camshaft is going to be off 180 degrees. Rotate the crankshaft another full turn and the timing will be correct. The cam sprocket has exactly twice as many teeth as does the crankshaft sprocket, so it turns half as much.

The reason Saturntech9 told you to turn the crankshaft backward 90 degrees is to insure no piston is at top dead center. That way there is no chance of a valve hitting the top of a piston while you rotate the camshaft by hand. Now you can bring the crankshaft to top dead center and install the belt. The tensioning device will always be on the backside of the engine, meaning where the belt leaves the crankshaft sprocket. The sprocket is pulling the belt tight on the front. That is the point where timing is critical between the sprockets. Any slack will be taken up on the other side where belt length has nothing to do with keeping things in proper time.

Once everything is installed and in time, rotate the crankshaft forward by hand two complete revolutions, then recheck the timing marks. Never go backward as someone suggested to you. Doing so might not cause a problem, but it is not accepted practice. On some engines that will cause spring-loaded tensioners to retract and allow the belt to jump or the tensioner can be tightened down while putting insufficient tension of the belt. Turning the crankshaft backward pulls the rear section of the belt tight and can cause the tensioner to retract. Also, if the belt doesn't jump time, the crank is going to turn the equivalent of two or three teeth and take up the slack, then the camshaft sprocket will start to turn. That will incorrectly show the belt is installed in what appears to be in-time while it's actually off by those two or three teeth.
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Friday, September 16th, 2016 AT 1:09 PM
Tiny
01CIVICEX
  • MEMBER
Well I bought it running rough like it was from a guy that told me the belt was done at 150000 and that all it probably needed was new plugs, apparently it wasn't done, and that was when I speculated it was out of time. What was confounding me was some other guys kept telling me "you have to make sure the camshaft is turn the right way, UP one revolution the valves are closed, UP the next revolution the valves are open and you'll bend them if you put the belt on that way" never having had a honda or anything with an interference engine I really had no clue.
I think I better just take it somewhere or scrap it.
Thank you both for the information though!
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Friday, September 16th, 2016 AT 4:07 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Your welcome were here to help tell your friends about us.
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Friday, September 16th, 2016 AT 6:07 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
One last comment, hopefully of value. When someone selling a car says, "all it probably needs is"..., It doesn't. If it was that easy, they would have done it already to make the car worth more or easier to sell. They tried already and gave up, usually because they figured out it is too expensive or difficult to fix.
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Friday, September 16th, 2016 AT 11:51 PM
Tiny
01CIVICEX
  • MEMBER
Oh and the guy didn't say to turn the crankshaft backwards, he said I needed to make sure that when the tdc marks were aligned that the #1 piston was all the way up since one revolution and marks aligned it would be at bdc (exhaust) the other #1 piston would be tdc (compression) is that right? Thanks again
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Monday, September 19th, 2016 AT 7:37 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
If any pistons are all the way up when you turn the cam you can hit valves plain and simple.
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Monday, September 19th, 2016 AT 7:39 PM
Tiny
01CIVICEX
  • MEMBER
It does appear to be at the bottom stroke now, if so, I can't turn it belt or not or I will indeed hit valves correct? And yeah I decided to go ahead and try it rather than wait 3 months, it was a cheap car anyway lol
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Monday, September 19th, 2016 AT 7:42 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
About 90 degrees from tdc that's where I would be then set the cam then bring the crank to the timing marks. That way you don't smack valves. That's the only way Iam going to recommend doing it.
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Monday, September 19th, 2016 AT 7:46 PM
Tiny
01CIVICEX
  • MEMBER
I'm a newbie not sure what oclock 90 degrees would be. The way it's setting now is the cam is at 3Oclock, the cam is tdc, but #1 cylinder is at the bottom, so trying to figure how to make the second crankshaft rotation without hitting valves, that's not possible without removing the head is it?
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Monday, September 19th, 2016 AT 7:55 PM
Tiny
01CIVICEX
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Sorry crank is at 3 Oclock
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Monday, September 19th, 2016 AT 7:56 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
90 degrees would be 25 percent turn of the crank there a 360 degrees in a full crank turn.
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Monday, September 19th, 2016 AT 8:01 PM

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