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1998 Forester
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11 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So I just took 12 working hours out of the last week pulling the heads off of my 98 Forester. I followed several threads and technical posting on this board and some other links and felt like I had done a very thorough job and followed the directions to a tee.

When I was finished I came away losing one fuel line c-clamp and wound up with one extra 10mm fastener that I did not know what to do with.

My result is that the exhaust cam shaft seal failed IMMEDIATELY when the oil pressure came up and the car is dieseling badly. I do not know how I could have screwed up the timing. Other than the timing belt, is there anyway I could have made a mistake reinstalling the cams, shims, cam sprockets??? When I reconnected the timing belt, I was actually able to get the timing marks closer together than when I took it off. Granted this was a very minor, maybe a tooth closer but it was CLOSER so ??????

Now I am faced with dissasembling. I am not afraid to try again, however, I am not sure where I made the mistake which is a pretty big problem. The car did run, granted it ran like chit. Any insights and ENCOURAGEMENT would be huge, I am pretty bummed. :icon_sad:
 

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2009 Forester X Premium
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3,091 Posts
You'll get it! take your time and line up them timing marks even one tooth off will make it run like crap
 

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2003 XS
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169 Posts
Granted this was a very minor, maybe a tooth closer but it was CLOSER so ??????
Closer only counts in horseshoes and hand granades. Engine timing is an exact science.

No worries mate. Sounds like you did a pretty decent job, considering. Just think. The second time is going to be so much easier since you already know what to do!
 

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Premium Member
2008 Forester X Premium 5MT
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8,070 Posts
The seal could be just a bad install....

The dieseling is probably related to the timing belt install.

Fix the cam seal and double/triple..... check your work the next time around.
 

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1998 Forester
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11 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the words, I REALLY appreciate it. I enlisted a mobile mechanic to come help me tomorrow. I dont know what I did wrong with the seal and need a pro to double check those and to correct the timing. Hopefully between the two of us we can knock it out quickly and correctly.
 

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Registered
1998 Forester
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11 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Mechanic will be here in an hour, but I tore it back down to the timing belt and the marks align EXACTlY where they were BEFORE I took it off the first time.

Is there something I could have done when re-installing the camshafts? I put all the shims back in the right locations, bearing caps etc.. Is there anyway the cams can be out of phase?

How do you ascertain you are at TDC????
 

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Premium Member
2019 Crosstrek 2018 XT
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14,405 Posts
I haven't done it but there should be a mark on the flywheel aligning with a pointer for TDC of #1. If you are out 1 revolution I would imagine valve will be bent.

Again, I haven't done the job nor have I checked the marks.
 

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Registered
1998 Forester
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11 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Well, it wasnt the timing belt. I somehow managed to get the headgasket on incorrectly. Once I realized the problem I packed it in for the day and am gonna take a day to catch my breath and redo the driver side HG.

I believe I may have put it in back to front OR that when I was in the process of attaching the head it got pinched or hung up on something.

I am happy to know the problem, happy to know that I did get the timing belt on correctly although the mechanic showed me a better way and got the marks on the belt to line up with the timing marks which I did not do nor was it done by the previous installer.

Wheeewwwwwwwwww! Takin it out of me. I still like this car though. :icon_biggrin:
 

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2003 XS
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169 Posts
Douge, you're awesome. You embody the DIY spirit. Keep at it and keep us updated on your progress. Did you pull the engine or did you replace the head gaskets with the engine in the car?

My first timing belt was on a 1985 BMW 528e. It took me two days. After I was all done, I fired it up only to realize I ****ed up the water pump gasket. Coolant was leaking everywhere. The next day, I tore the whole thing apart and did it again, but it only took me a few hours the second time. I still have the car and can now change the timing belt with my eyes closed (well, not really, its just a figure of speech).

Tell me more about this magic you call "mobile mechanic?" I've never heard of such things in my country, which happens to be the United States of America, in case you are wondering.

Mark
 

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Registered
1998 Forester
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11 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Well finally got some good news. I tore it back down yesterday and this morning and installed a new HG CORRECTLY this time. Also, I took my time on the timing belt as mechanic was not helping and found TDC, installed belt by counting the teeth and got all of the timing marks on the car and the belt lined up and THEN rotated the motor with a ratchet until all the timing marks lined up again. I reassembled everything but the radiator and fired it up and its running great. I was ELATED. Will button it up tomorrow and having it detailed.

SO HAPPY! Thanks for the help and encouragement it was much appreciated!

Moengel, this was an engine in car operation.

Doug
 
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