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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Question re: Replacing Cam Cover Gaskets, Oil Seals & Caps on 2003 Passat ATQ 2.8L V6

Hello, everyone:

I started to replace the thermostat, TB and water pump in my 2003 Passat wagon [picture below], but as I went along -and since so much of the engine has to be removed anyways- decided to replace the cam cover gaskets as well, so I purchased the ECS cam cover gasket kit and am in the process of replacing the old gaskets, which were causing oil leaks on both sides of the engine, following the instructions here:
forums.audiworld.com/showthread.php?t=1708648
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jBsYGVwaMR0
www.blauparts.com/vw/vw_valve_cover_gasket/vw_valve_cover_gasket_kit.shtml#valvecovergasketleakinghttp://www.blauparts.com/vw/vw_valv...over_gasket_kit.shtml#valvecovergasketleaking [Blauparts series of videos, which are not detailed but give you the general idea]
IMG_20140126_160121.jpg


For the t-stat, water pump and TB job I have followed the fine instructions here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3pFKMJu8vQo[/video] [which is a three-part video, very well explained] and:
phatcat_ed.tripod.com/V6.htmhttp://phatcat_ed.tripod.com/V6.htm
commented and adjusted somewhat by:
www.passatworld.com/forums/68-b5-garage/233495-diy-v6-timing-belt-replacement-my-experience.htmlhttp://www.passatworld.com/forums/6...v6-timing-belt-replacement-my-experience.html
My thanks to Ratchets and Wrenches, Phat Cat and y2000passat. Awesome, detailed and patient people, all of you.

I have also used the Bentley's Service Manual [ISBN 9780837614830] as reference.
I must say that I did not use the cam clamp 3391 but, instead, built my own, pictured below, which worked well enough.
I am using the crank lock, tool 3242, which I installed once I had TDC prior to taking the TB off [Bentley's pp.D13-3 and D13-4].
IMG_20140327_161809.jpg


So, here is where I am:
crank is locked with tool 3242
TB, t-sat housing and water pump housing are off
cam covers are off
cam sprockets are on
cam clamp is not on
double bearing cap is off in right-side cam
camshaft position sensor is off in right-side cam
[picture of left cam and sprocket as they are now, and picture of right sprocket as it still is and with which the left one matched, below]
IMG_20140327_161848.jpg IMG_20140327_161842.jpg IMG_20140327_161949.jpg

[and picture of the crankshaft still aligned with marks made prior to TB removal and after crank lock pin placed, below]
IMG_20140327_162010.jpg


While everything has gone splendidly trouble-free, I have come across what I suspect and fear to be a major mistake:
After removing the cover for the camshaft position sensor of the left side [pistons 1, 2, and 3] a 13mm bolt holds the washer, hood and oil seal. Upon turning it counterclockwise the exhaust camshaft snapped to the left, and the sprocket moved 3/4 of a turn to the left or, more accurately 49 teeth of the sprocket.

As I understand it, I have to remove and then hand-tighten the sprockets for easier reinstallation of the TB. This being the case, I have assumed that, in order to get better clearance to the cam chain tensioner gaskets in the left cam and the oil seal and cap in the right one, I would get the sprockets off or, at least, loosened.

My questions, then:
Have I damaged the timing or the valves because of that movement in the left-side sprocket?
Or would that movement have happened anyway when loosening the sprockets, as seems to be the implication in the Bentley's instruction on p.D13-4 ?

And, although I was close but hadn't gotten yet to that step, How are the sprockets removed? Ratchets and Wrenches uses a gear puller [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhhVcxZE7uE at minute 5:44] and the sprocket and plate jump off, but I do not quite understand how he makes the bolt turn counterclockwise [assuming on my part that this bolt tightens and loosens normally, i.e.: righty-tighty and leftie-loosie] to loosen the sprocket without it and its securing plate also turning?

I hope I haven't bored you all experts with such mundane questions. While I await your responses I'll go back to install the aux water pump and its hoses, the CTS, the t-stat, and the water pump, and degrease as much of the block as I can. Yes, I am a nerd. I should be German.


Cheers,Miguel


p.s.:
BTW, that in the car is Lola, who owns the street block and apparently also thinks the car belongs to her, mostly for napping purposes.
 

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If I'm following you right, the way to loosen the sprocket bolt is to put the cam bar on and loosen both bolts (leftie-loosie) a couple of turns. Leaving the cam bar in position, use a two jaw puller installed around the cam bar to pop the sprockets loose - it's a press fit. Once the sprockets are popped loose, the cam bar can be removed and the loosened sprocket bolts, keyed plates and the sprockets removed without causing the camshafts to turn on you. The timing belt should be installed and tensioned with the sprockets loose (not removed) and cam bar back in position to avoid inadvertently turning the camshafts. The cam bar should remain in position when tightening back up the sprocket bolts.

Don't know if the 3/4 turn of the camshaft has caused damage but I'd guess not. Just carefully rotate the camshaft back to where it belongs.
 

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Are you sure the cams turned counter-clockwise ?
If the cams in bank 1 (RHS-Passenger side) turned 3/4 of a turn counter-clockwise, you have almost certainly bent all 5 valves in cylinder #3.
If it turned 1/4 turn clockwise it will be OK.

Note: With the crank at TDC, if the Bank 2 cams turn only a few teeth, valves in cylinder #5 will be damaged.


You will need the proper cam lock bar.
I suggest you carefully, and precisely in the order listed:

1) Remove the lock pin and turn the crank counter-clockwise to about 45 degrees before TDC. (valves can't hit pistons in this position)
2) Remove the cam pulleys, and refit leaving them just loose enough to turn freely.
3) Then use the cam lock bar to turn the exhaust cams so the large holes in the pulley plates are facing inwards (toward each other), and fit the cam locking bar.
4) Turn crank clockwise to the timing mark on crank pulley, and fit the crank lock pin.
5) Fit the TB on the crank pulley first, then working in a counter-clockwise direction, fit it around all the other pulleys. Make sure the belt is tight everywhere except the section that goes over the tensioner roller.
6) Release the load on the pin in the tensioner with an Allen wrench in the pulley, remove the pin.
7) Allow a couple of minutes for the tensioner to extend, then pretension the TB, using a torque wrench in the tensioner roller turn counter-clockwise to a torque of 132in-lbs (15Nm).
8) With the cam lock bar installed, tighten the cam pulley bolts to 41ft-lbs (55Nm).
9) Remove the cam locking bar and crank lock pin.
10) Carefully turn crank 2 full turns back to TDC and recheck timing.
11) Do a compression test and post the results.

Note: Some people seem to have trouble getting the TB on, to void this problem I suggest you fit the tensioner roller between steps 5) and 6), after fitting the belt.

If you have any concerns about this, please ask before proceeding.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Many thanks for your quick response, y2000passat. I now understand the proper use of the cam bar/clamp. Will remove/loosen/hand-tighten sprockets as you suggest. When ready to install the TB, should I match it to the cam sprockets as initially marked, or does that no longer matter since the sprockets were removed and reset?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you for your help, Tomvw.
No, I am now not sure that the sprocket turned counter-clockwise. I happened too fast to be sure. My assumption was that it had turned to the left because I had had to turn the bolt counter-clockwise to loosen it. But I do hope now that it moved clockwise since that would mean there is no damage to the valves.

Bank 2, yes, I do believe I moved it just a few teeth in trying to take bolt off with cam bar on.
How can I ascertain that the 5 valves of cylinders #3 and #5 are damaged or not?

When you say use the bar to turn the cams, do you mean: turn the cams while cam bar is in place?
 

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My questions, then:Have I damaged the timing or the valves because of that movement in the left-side sprocket? Or would that movement have happened anyway when loosening the sprockets, as seems to be the implication in the Bentley's instruction on p.D13-4 ?
The cams can and will turn on their own, due to torque caused by the valve spring force acting on the cam faces. Because the springs are trying to force the valves up away from the pistons, the natural effect is to reduce the opening of open valves. So I really doubt that any damage occurs.

And, although I was close but hadn't gotten yet to that step, How are the sprockets removed? Ratchets and Wrenches uses a gear puller [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhhVcxZE7uE at minute 5:44] and the sprocket and plate jump off, but I do not quite understand how he makes the bolt turn counterclockwise [assuming on my part that this bolt tightens and loosens normally, i.e.: righty-tighty and leftie-loosie] to loosen the sprocket without it and its securing plate also turning?
Unless you are changing the cam seals, the sprockets don't have to be removed at all. Once the cam bolt is loosened (holding tool in place), the puller is set up to press on the head of the cam bolt, while the jaws grab the sprocket through its openings. The cam's front end is tapered to match the sprocket's bore, so with enough force the sprocket pops loose. There is no need to mark the sprockets in this case; the fact that they get rotated relative to the cam does not matter if the cam holding bar is used. After the sprockets are loosened, they should spin freely on the ends of their cams. When you have the belt and every thing else installed, then the cams need to be rotated so the cam holding bar's four dowel pins fits the corresponding holes in the cam plates. Many times you can fit the bar to the cam plate that needs to be turned the most, and use the bar as a kind of wrench to turn the cam into proper position. After that, the belt is tensioned, then finally the cam bolts are tightened. Remove both cam and crank tools, then rotate the engine several revolutions, with all the spark plugs out to make it easier, before reinstalling the cam/crank tools to verify that it is properly timed.
 

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Bank 2, yes, I do believe I moved it just a few teeth in trying to take bolt off with cam bar on.
Bank 2, yes, I do believe I moved it just a few teeth in trying to take bolt off with cam bar on.
Do not use that piece of wood for a cam bar, although it is possible to do the job without a cam bar,
unless you know exactly what you are doing, you will likely come to grief without the proper cam bar.


How can I ascertain that the 5 valves of cylinders #3 and #5 are damaged or not?
There are other ways to check, but in your case I think it would be best to get the TB back on correctly, and do a compression test.


When you say use the bar to turn the cams, do you mean: turn the cams while cam bar is in place?
The cams can not be turned with the cam bar properly installed. Locate the pins of one end of the bar into the holes in one of the cam pulley plates to turn the cam.
While the crank is about 45 degrees before TDC, the pistons are out of the way and you can turn the cams as much as you like.

I suggest you follow the instructions in post #3 exactly.
Do not use any of those instructions, if you are not going to use them all in correct order.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you for your help, ylwagon, much appreciated.
If understand you accurately, you are of the opinion that no damage might have happened. Could you confirm this, please?

I am in fact replacing the cam oil seals, reason for which I will have to remove sprockets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Do not use that piece of wood for a cam bar, although it is possible to do the job without a cam bar,
unless you know exactly what you are doing, you will likely come to grief without the proper cam bar.
Wooden home-made tool tossed. Cam bar/clamp ordered and here on Monday.
I am not a professional auto mechanic and do not know exactly what I am doing, Tomvw, else I would not be here and grateful for your time, effort and spirit of service in helping me to avoid damage to my car. It was in poor judgement and ignorance on my part to fail to realize the importance of the proper cam bar/clamp in a job of such delicate nature, yes: I was over-confident in my ability to make a useful tool. My hope is that such error will not bring me too much of the grief to which you refer. But if it does, it can be accepted and dismissed as part of the learning process. It's only a car, after all, not as if my son died.

I realize that write-ups and videos are only as useful as they are detailed and exact in their explanations and use of written and visual language; some in this forum are better than others in that respect. I have only rarely read anyone's comments or advice to be contemptuous, paternalistic, angry or impatient. So I have used what is available here to begin to learn what to many others is second nature and the result of decades of hands-on experience. I am aware, as well, that it it expectable that I will make mistakes. My purpose is to fix my car making the least of them, researching thoroughly and asking experts when I do not understand something, while saving money and having the satisfaction of knowing exactly how the work was done.

There are other ways to check, but in your case I think it would be best to get the TB back on correctly, and do a compression test.
It is not as simple as replacing the TB and getting the car started to run a compression test, Tomvw. I have other jobs going along this one: replacing all cam cover gaskets, breather and combi hoses and valve, vacuum hoses, water pump, thermostat, brake fluid, power steering fluid, fog lamp wiring, auxiliary water pump, several cooling system hoses and CTS, and checking final drive oil. So, it makes time and economic sense to my untrained mind to try to figure out if the valves are damaged now that the cams are open instead of finishing all the additional work, reassembling and then testing compression to determine whether the valves are damaged, to then have to disassemble again to replace the valves.
However, if your opinion is that none of the other existing ways to check are viable in my case, or if according to you it is more effective and/or accurate to do it now, then I would opt for that route.


The cams can not be turned with the cam bar properly installed. Locate the pins of one end of the bar into the holes in one of the cam pulley plates to turn the cam. While the crank is about 45 degrees before TDC, the pistons are out of the way and you can turn the cams as much as you like.
Yes, I see, using it as a lever or wrench, just as ylwagon also suggests.


I suggest you follow the instructions in post #3 exactly.
Do not use any of those instructions, if you are not going to use them all in correct order.
Great. And thanks for amending numeral 3 in your list for clarity.
I would not follow those instructions in order only if I were an obstinate cantankerous curmudgeon. They are, in fact, the clearest and most thorough set of instructions I have received so far, and I thank you for them.

If you think of anything else to recommend or advise, please let me know. I will not start fixing the sprocket/shaft until monday midday -when the cam bar/clamp arrives. Until then I will be working on the other repairs. Your advice is much appreciated and welcome.
 

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It is not as simple as replacing the TB and getting the car started to run a compression test, Tomvw. I have other jobs going along this one:
You do the compression test in step 11), immediately after fitting the TB.

For an accurate compression test it should be done at operating temp, but a cold test will show whether valves are bent or not.
At this point I think the valves are probably OK, I don't think bank 1 cams turned a 3/4 turn.
If the valves are bent, the only work you will double up on is the actual fitting of the timing belt.
 

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From looking at the cam lobes on cylinder #3, it is tough to say if the cams actually rotated backwards. If they did, your exhaust valves are bent. It would seem logical they would rotate backwards from the force of trying to loosen the bolt but I suspect they actually rotated forward. This is due to the cam lobe location (on cyl #3) as rotating it forward from their current location will cause the exhaust valves to bend, rotating them backwards would not. I do not expect they rotated backwards enough to open the valve fully (which would require bending the valves) and move to the opposite side of the cam follower. The other reason I suspect this is that the passenger side cams often rotate forward when the lock is removed. I've had it happen several times and have simply rotated the cams backwards into place.

So the short version is: rotate the cams backwards into place. I do not expect the valves are bent.
Good luck and keep us posted.
 

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Hi Miguel-

I got your email requesting my input, so here ya go:

As others have said, I believe that it's unlikely that valves have been bent simply by the force of the cam lobes moving it. I agree with Tom and PZ that it most likely moved forward (clockwise) by 1/4 turn, and not backwards a full 3/4 turn.

The correct tool allows for the nuts that hold the sprockets on to be loosened, while still holding the cams in place. I HIGHLY suggest that you wait until the tool arrives, so you can install it and then take the cam sprockets loose. If you put any force on the cam, you're likely to damage some valves. Note that those alignment plates are keyed to the cam, but the sprockets sit on a taper that's on the end of the cam shaft. This allows for the sprockets to be adjusted while keeping the cams themselves lined up.

You're most likely in the clear right now, but you definitely risk damaging some valves if you try and force things without the alignment tools in place.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
It's an odd day here, breezy in that marine sort of way typical of coastal northern Pacific Coast cities, somewhat cloudy, and it rained cats and dogs last night.
So, I'm reviewing notes, the Bentley's, and posts about the cams and cam tensioners, looking at the wagon sit there.
I will wait. I learned my lesson. Cam bar arriving tomorrow.

Encouraged by your observation, and soundguybob's, I'm going to go in the cams and look for the lifters touching the cams before the sun goes down.
WIll post later.

Thank you very much for your response.


miguel
 

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If you follow my instructions in post #3 carefully, there will be NO RISK of damage.

As I stated previously. (with a little less detail) If bank 1 exhaust cam turned 3/4 of a turn (I don't think it did) in either direction the intake cam would have also,
and all valves in cylinder #3 exhaust and intake would have tried to fully open and would be bent.
I think it is more likely that intake and/or exhaust valves in cylinder #5 would be bent, but I think they are also fairly safe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Storming here today, thunder and lightning even. Well, it's not like snowstorms and blizzards in the East Coast and Midwest, but it's unusual here. Did not have much of a winter, very little rain and the State is in a drought emergency, thus not complaining about the Spring showers. But two days in a row of non-stop rain with long stretches of pouring cats and dogs has stopped me from working on the car, parked outside in the driveway as it is. Besides, cam bar won't be here until tomorrow, now --presumably weather delays. So, will report tomorrow on whether the lifters touch the cam shafts.

As an aside, the wagon is jacked at the front and resting on stands, with handbrake on and stops behind the rear tires; the degree of incline is about 25 degrees. I discovered water flooding the floor behind the driver's seat yesterday: the old infamous Passat water ingress problem! Will be reviewing mycarsavw's collection of threads: http://www.passatworld.com/forums/61-b5-information-base/230249-water-ingress-solutions.html.
 

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After doing step 1) in post #3, turn bank 1 cam to TDC (large hole in cam pulley plate facing in toward other cam),
and turn bank 2 cam to 180 degrees from TDC. (small hole in cam pulley plate facing in toward other cam)
Then check the gaps between lifters and cam shafts for all 5 valves in both cylinder #3 and #5.
If any gap is greater than 0.008" with the lifter pushed down to bleed out oil, (use wood or plastic) there is a problem.
You don't need the cam bar to do this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
OK, Tomvw. Thank you. Will report after I do that.
In the meantime, I will post separately pictures of the lifters and cam shafts as they are now.
 

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Did you buy the crank holder tool too? It improves the accuracy of TDC and won't let the crank move. The job can be done without it, but you could possibly end up with a few degrees of cam error, since the pulley mark is not generally considered trustworthy.
 
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