This is the place to start, undo the 3 bolts fixing the cooling system expansion tank and move the
whole tank out of the way. No need to remove the hoses.
Then undo the top 2 and front mid 10mm cambelt cover bolts and take a peek. As you can see
mine was well worn after just 48000 miles and six years. Although in no danger of snapping, the
ridges can clearly be seen worn into the belt and the outer has worn smooth where it has been
slapping the cover - time for a change!
Next step after deciding to change the belt is to remove the front drivers wheel - jack the car as
high as you can on this side as you'll need access to the underside of the gearbox later.
Then remove the front section of the wheelarch liner, this should leave you with something like
this on view :_
Ok, back under the bonnet for the next few steps
Remove the spark plug cover - two allen head bolts.
Remove the spark plugs and don't forget which lead goes to which plug. (Original leads are
numbered). This is to make it easier to turn the engine by hand later.
Next, slacken the alternator belt tensioner and slip the belt from the pulley. (13mm for the
adjuster, 19mm for the lower mounts and 17mm for the securing nut).
Ok, now remove the lower front 10mm cambelt cover bolt, this just leaves one bolts which is
easier to remove later.
Now on your knees again and under that wheelarch. Slip the alternator belt over the water
pump pulley and crankshaft pulley and remove the belt (you may as well fit a new one.)
Remove the 4 allen head bolts pictured above, the hold on the lower pulley which also drives the
power steering.
If you're lucky as I was, simply pull the pulley away from the engine and slip off the power
steering pump belt. If not, you may have to slacken the power steering pump to relieve the
tension on the belt first.
You'll now be looking at this:-
The shiny gold plate is just used for the tdc sensor on the left and can be pulled away from the
car easily.
This is what you'll have -
Ok, so far so good, if you're going to bottle it, do it now as no timing or tension has been
The toothed belt you can see on the pulley is the balancer shaft belt. It's condition should be
checked regularly as it will tangle with the cambelt if it snaps. Mine was in good condition which
is just as well as they are Fiat only and about 50!!
Anyway, remove the last 10mm cambelt cover bolt which can be seen hiding at the top mid of
the above photo. Now gently ease the cambelt cover out and put it somewhere safe. Mine kept
getting up and walking round the garage so keep an eye on it!
Back under the bonnet now for the real man's work......
Congratulations! You've removed the cambelt cover and can now see the mess that is a belt
driven twin-cam. Mmmm all those pulleys - yum!
See the ugly black thing on the left, this is the engine mount which goes to the drivers side strut
- it needs to be removed but it's a stubborn beasty.
Easiest way is to remove the 17mm bolt at the suspension strut end first. Next, remove the two
10mm bolts that hold the inner cambelt cover on - there's also a 13mm one hiding down the
back of the engine, that'll keep you busy for a while.
The inner metal cambelt cover should now move about enough to access the engine mount bolts
on the side of the engine. There are 3 of these (painted red) and they're 19mm.
You'll need a strong arm as they are bloody tight, remove them completely taking care not to
loose the large spacers from behind the mount - a ratchet ring spanner here comes in very
When they're removed you should be able to just slip the engine mount out and chuck it across
the garage.....
With this out of the way, you can remove the inner cambelt cover completely. The manual says
to remove the water pump pulley but you can get away with a bit of patience. Be careful here as
the wiring loom for the TDC sensor runs down the back of this cover and is clipped in.
This is how things look now :-
Now you can see the whole run of the balancer shaft belt and you'll need to see bolt balancer
shaft sprockets to get the timing right later. The Autodata sheet shows how they line up and the
markings are just round dots punched into the sprocket. Mark them up with some paint to make
things easier.
Now, just undo the 13mm nut on the balancer belt tensioner and slip off the belt, if you're going
to use it again, make sure you know which way it came off and refit it in the same way.
Ok, that's all the easy work done!
This is where the Fiat tools come in handy, take the flywheel locking tool and get under the car
(sorry no photo's for this bit). You'll find a curved metal cover on the lower right edge of the
gearbox. Remove the two fasteners and slip out the cover. The locking tool then locates against
the teeth of the flywheel and bolts into the hole for the cover.
Back in the wheelarch again and it's time to flex those muscles. The big red bolt holds on the
crankshaft sprocket and is a left hand thread it's also extremely tight so you'll need a breaker
bar. Don't worry about breaking the engine, all the torque is transferred along the crank to the
flywheel which is now lock in place.
Ok, don't have a picture to show how it looks with this sprocket off?
Next, remove the flywheel locking tool.
Get back under the bonnet and using a 19mm spanner on the exhaust cam sprocket bolt, turn
the engine clockwise until the timing marks line up as per the Autodata sheet.
This time the cam sprockets are just marked with a slot punched out in the edge - these line up
with ridges cast on to the side of the cylinder head.
You can see the markings pointing down - the grooves in the sprockets are not easily visible in
this photo but are obvious in the real thing (honest).
The marking on the lower crank sprocket is also obvious and should align when the two cams are
lined up.
With it all aligned, refit the flywheel locking tool and do not touch until you've finished! It won't
stop the cams turning but will stop the crank from moving.
Now you can slacken the cambelt tensioner and remove the cambelt. Throw it to the back of the
garage to stop yourself from refitting it.
Now's the time to check all those bearings for wear and tear. Spin them and check to make sure
they're not gritty or seized. Apart from the balancer belt tensioner there should be no play side
to side either.
I had to change the front balance shaft pulley which is integrated with the cambelt idler bearing
- it had minimal side to side play but could wake the dead when spinning. I also replaced the
balancer shaft tensioner bearing as it had loads of play but the new one's have a bit of play too.
Now, follow the instructions for the cambelt fit on the Autodata sheet. Triple check all your
alignments marks and make sure that you turn the engine by hand at least twice as you apply
force to the tensioner. Then check the alignment marks again afterwards (
note you'll have to
remove the flywheel locking tool before trying to turn the engine by hand
) my exhaust cam had
moved one tooth on the belt so it's best to check and be sure with yourself now.
As in good old Haynes fashion, refitting is reversal of removal! The balancer belt aligns exactly
as shown on the Autodata sheet and it is very important to get this right - I got it a quarter turn
out on the front shaft and the engine tries to shake itself to bits above 3000rpm.
Also, take care to fit the left hand thread crank pulley bolt to the correct torque again using the
flywheel locking tool.
When tensioning both belts , I used the Fiat adapters to fit to the tensioners but didn't have the
tensioning tool so just set them to a bit tighter than they were when they came off. It's not very
scientific but you can't go far wrong.
Make sure you get the spark plug leads the right way round and securely fitted. I had a
loose one which caused a misfire - I thought I'd made an arse of the timing and took it all apart
again to find it wasn't - not funny....
Don't be afraid to be paranoid about the timing belt - check the alignment several times
during fitting and make sure you turn it by hand afterwards. If you have cocked it up you won't
cause any damage finding out this way......
That poxy metal cambelt cover - I'm sure it's very useful but it's also a swine to get back
on. I can guarantee it'll take you longer to do this than you can imagine beforehand. Swear at
it, kick the garage wall then try again - it does fit.
The water reservoir - the hose goes under the engine mount. Don't fit the mount and
then find the bottle won't fit back into place again. Very frustrating.
That engine mount, slip it loosely into place at the strut end but don't put the bolt in.
Bolt it to the engine first (3 19mm bolts with spacers and washers - don't loose em). Then I
used a bottle jack between the engine and strut brace to line up the hole at the strut. Brute
force works but it gets a bit tedious after 20 mins.
Finally, don't forget to refit the cambelt cover (plastic one) before you put this pulley
back on
As you'll find the belt covers up the hole for that last mounting bolt!
Good luck and any queries, just drop me an email.