[Note: Image above isn’t mine. I found it here.]
The last repair was a real mess. I’ll be happy if I never have to waste that amount of time and labor on something so … stupid.
I realized after the repair was made that my problems actually started over 2 months ago now, when my alternator belt shredded. I replaced it, and the next day the alternator pretty much died. No biggie, that was almost expected, so replacing it was fine. The voltage regulator had blown, the bearings were shot so it had a lot of play in the shaft, and the there was this really weird clunking noise upon rotation inside. Once we had the new alternator installed, it immediately ran like crap. No power, poor throttle response. Completely unsafe to drive.
We replaced the PTU, the coolant temp sensor, the coil packs …. did all the standard testing for leaks. Nothing. Compression test showed all 4 cylinders @ 189psi – which is within spec. Obviously, the alternator tested to be within spec as well. We simply couldn’t get a lead in any direction.
Eventually, I pulled the drive pulley off … which I had managed to do incorrectly. I wanted to check the timing to verify that it was right at all points, not just the ones I could see. Well, since I had removed it wrong, I managed to knock off my crank sprocket as well. So now, it is definitely out of time.
The end results were pretty scary. The timing belt’s tension pulley’s bolt had almost fallen out from being so loose, as well as the idle pulley across from it. I didn’t realize it until after I put everything back together, but the alternator belt wouldn’t go back on the lip that I had removed it from. This was a concern when I replaced it, the grooves that I had to use to make it work after it shredded didn’t line up how I thought they should, but it worked so … I went with it. The cause of this was the crank sprocket & drive pulley, as an assembly, had walked down the crank shaft enough to slip off the key – due to the bolt that holds it all in place becoming loose as well.
Once everything was re-timed and put back together – it ran great again. I’ll be keeping an eye on the bolts over the next few hundred miles to prevent this from happening again. You can see the thread forum here.