Your VW Passat uses a flexible timing belt to rotate the two camshafts on the cylinder head. The vehicle manufacturer recommends replacing this belt every 60,000 miles on average. However, if the belt shows signs of cracks, peeling, missing teeth or other damage during your maintenance inspection, replace it. You will need to prepare ahead of time, get organised and acquire several special tools for this job. Make sure you have all you need before beginning, then proceed to install the new belt.
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Things you need
- Wrench set
- Ratchet and socket set
- Spanner wrench number 2112
- Open-end spanner wrench number 2112
- 17mm box wrench
- Drift tool number 3204
- Short ratchet extension
- Crankshaft tool number 3242
- 8mm hex wrench
- 2mm spring pin
- Torque wrench
Disconnect the ground (black) battery cable using a wrench.
Remove all the necessary components to gain access to the front of the engine using a wrench set and/or a ratchet and socket set.
Make a note of the serpentine belt routing so that you can replace it in the same exact position.
Secure the viscous fan pulley using spanner wrench number 2112.
Remove the viscous fan bearing housing by turning it clockwise, using the open-end spanner wrench number 2112 as you hold the fan pulley in place.
Rotate the serpentine belt tensioner clockwise using a 17mm box wrench until the hole in the tensioner and the hole in the back of the tensioner align. Then insert drift tool number 3204 into the holes to hold the tensioner in place.
Remove the serpentine belt from the engine compartment.
Rotate the crankshaft pulley with a ratchet, short ratchet extension and socket until the mark on the pulley and the mark on the engine housing behind and above the crankshaft pulley align. The two camshaft sprockets on the cylinder head are equipped with a double tab centrepiece. There is a hole on each side of these tabs. The larger hole in each tab of each sprocket should point inward and toward each other. If not, rotate the crankshaft pulley another revolution to align the tabs. This is your Top Dead Center (TDC) on cylinder number 1, according to Eric Godfrey in "VW Passat & Audi A4 Automotive Repair Manual."
Remove the sealing plug located on the engine block to the left of the crankshaft pulley using a screwdriver.
Insert the crankshaft-holder tool number 3242 into the sealing hole to hold the crankshaft in place.
Rotate the timing-belt tensioner roller clockwise to compress the tensioner using an 8mm hex wrench. As you hold the belt tensioner, insert a 2mm spring pin through the tensioner housing and tensioner plunger to hold the timing belt tensioner in place. Then remove the 8mm hex wrench.
Unscrew and remove the dampener pulley in front of the crankshaft pulley using a ratchet, ratchet extension and socket. Do not unscrew the centre bolt, which holds the crankshaft pulley in place.
Remove the serpentine belt idler pulley and the crankshaft damper guard using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.
Make a note of the timing belt routing and then remove it from the pulleys and engine.
Install the new timing belt and make sure it runs through the correct pulleys. Follow any special directions included in the shipping package of your new timing belt, if necessary.
Install the serpentine belt idler pulley and the crankshaft damper guard. Tighten the damper guard using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket. Torque the idler pulley to 33 foot-pounds (45 Nm) using a torque wrench, ratchet extension and socket.
Install the dampener pulley in front of the crankshaft pulley and torque the mounting bolts to 15 foot-pounds using the torque wrench, ratchet extension and socket.
Rotate the timing-belt tensioner roller clockwise to compress the tensioner using the 8mm hex wrench and remove the 2mm spring pin. Then let the timing belt tensioner roll back in place.
Remove the crankshaft-holder tool number 3242 from the sealing hole and replace the plug.
Install the serpentine belt and make sure it runs through the correct pulleys.
Rotate the serpentine belt tensioner clockwise using the 17mm box wrench and remove drift tool number 3204. Then slowly let the belt tensioner roll back in place.
Secure the viscous fan pulley using the spanner wrench number 2112.
Install the viscous fan bearing housing by turning it clockwise using the open-end spanner wrench number 2112, as you hold the fan pulley in place.
Reinstall all the components you had to remove the gain access to the front of the engine using the wrench set and/or ratchet and socket set.
Connect the ground (black) battery cable using the wrench.
Tips and warnings
- Many auto parts stores carry special tools for rent for all kinds of automotive work. Check your local outlets or VW dealership auto parts department, if necessary.
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