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Old 02-06-2012, 12:54 PM   #1
fm2200
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Happy life of timing chain

I have changed a few timing chains on GM cars and trucks. 1972 350 Chevy Monte Carlo timing chain jumped time 125,000 miles. Chevy pick-up 1988 350 180,000 truck was running poorly. Still using truck since changing chain 210,000 miles. How difficult is changing the timing chain on these Saturns. What is typical mileage for these chains to last.
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Old 02-06-2012, 01:02 PM   #2
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Default Re: life of timing chain

Quote:
Originally Posted by fm2200 View Post
What is typical mileage for these chains to last.
Should last the life of the car (from what I've read here), but depends on how well the oil was checked/changed.
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Old 02-06-2012, 02:09 PM   #3
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Default Re: life of timing chain

^ ^ ^ +1

Doing it with the engine in the car is a PITA, mainly due to clearance issues for getting tools in there. You spend a lot of timer turning the wrench 1/4 turn at a time

Out of the car, looks to be pretty easy; most of the time would be spent cleaning out the old RTV and stuff.

The chain usually gives you lots of warning before it goes (rattling) and it would require severe mechanical damage before it can actually "jump" time - you would hear it

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http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=164306
post 19

This is a good recent thread with links to docs and threads, if you want to read upon the process http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=163770
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Old 02-06-2012, 02:32 PM   #4
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Default Re: life of timing chain

I agree with the first two responses. I have changed 2 timing chains on twin cam S Series cars with the engine in the car. It is tedious. But as previously stated, they are designed to last the life of the engine. If the oil is properly maintained, level and changes, it will likely not fail. BUT when it does, they routinely give plenty of advance warning. They get noisly and it will sound like a broken typewriter going nuts.
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Old 02-06-2012, 02:39 PM   #5
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Default Re: life of timing chain

I just changed mine this past weekend on my fiances sl1 at 102k. The tensioner was pretty much at its limit. Its not hard, just a lot of stuff needs to come off to get to it. The fun part is putting the cover back on with sealant on without rubbing it off!
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Old 02-06-2012, 02:42 PM   #6
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Default Re: life of timing chain

Quote:
Originally Posted by fm2200 View Post
I have changed a few timing chains on GM cars and trucks. 1972 350 Chevy Monte Carlo timing chain jumped time 125,000 miles. Chevy pick-up 1988 350 180,000 truck was running poorly. Still using truck since changing chain 210,000 miles. How difficult is changing the timing chain on these Saturns. What is typical mileage for these chains to last.
I pulled mine when doing some head work at 170,000 miles. It was still well within limits so I just put it back on. Its a bit of a pain installing the cover in the car. The trick is to get the angle of the engine just perfect and practice a few times before putting the sealant on the cover.

Not sure why you would ever have to change chain other than running low on oil.

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Old 02-06-2012, 03:31 PM   #7
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Default Re: life of timing chain

I did mine last week, pretty safe but I was in there anyway so why not.
It WOULD be a lot easier outside the car, but, not really hard with it in the car, just be careful with the knuckles. Don't even try it without blocking up the right side, taking the wheel off, and spash shield, of course.
Very simple to get the timing right, can't really go wrong if you are paying attention and check it again after you get the parts on.
Just, make sure it is at TDC when you do...AND do NOT turn the crankshaft with the cams disconnected.
If you turn 90 degrees past TDC, all the pistons are about midway down, and you can turn the cams all you want...but be very careful on this point.
This is an interference engine, you can and will impact the pistons with valves if you do this when a piston is up. Once you know your cams are TDC, then you can back up the crank to TDC from the 90 degrees past spot where you had it.
If you are not doing head work, just replacing the cam sprockets, leave them where they are when putting the chain on. You could be one link of the first try, before you put the tensioner back on. The cams have spots about midway to use a wrench on the cams to keep them from rotating, if you have to turn a cam for any reason, use those, not the sprocket, to hold while taking the sprocket bolt off.
Even a haynes manual will be pretty much correct on this topic. Have fun! Once all the parts are on, including guides and tensioner, make sure the colored links are in the right places...cams will be on top, crank gear they will be on bottom on either side, on the opposite side of the timing mark since it is at TDC.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pawel View Post
I just changed mine this past weekend on my fiances sl1 at 102k. The tensioner was pretty much at its limit. Its not hard, just a lot of stuff needs to come off to get to it. The fun part is putting the cover back on with sealant on without rubbing it off!
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Old 02-07-2012, 02:37 AM   #8
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Default Re: life of timing chain

Thanks for all the info tips, pro & cons, this forum is really helpful. You all are real nice for taking the time to give me info for everything I was wondering about. All the sensors make the car very complex to me. I just had a 1991 Cutlass Supreme 3.1 6 cyl, auto, engine was very simple. Thanks again.
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Old 02-07-2012, 10:07 AM   #9
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Default Re: life of timing chain

I have done a DOHC timing chain.
I did not find it that bad...
Should last lifetime as said already, depending on maintenance. Know of a few S-series on original chains with well over 300K KMs. I wouldn't expect any less truthfully if care has been taken of the car.
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