What would you do?
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This is a discussion on What would you do? within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; So about 4-5 months ago i had my timing belt/water pump/tensioner/thermostat/accessory belts all replaced by a trusted mechanic. Before that ...

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    What would you do?

    So about 4-5 months ago i had my timing belt/water pump/tensioner/thermostat/accessory belts all replaced by a trusted mechanic. Before that time i had been problem free for 100k miles.

    Fastforward to last night. The nut on my AC belt tensioner pully fell off as i was driving, so the pulley was no longer attached to the arm. It then ground into the timing cover and shredded the belt, and partly frayed the alternator belt. I dont THINK the timing belt was harmed at all, judging from the brief glance i had at it today (didnt have time to take anything apart).

    My theory is that the nut on the tensioner pulley was not tightened properly by the mechanic and that over time it finally jiggled itself off of the bolt. I have only put about 2500 miles on the car since i had the work done.

    Now i know isht happens, but at what point is it simply bad luck, and at what point does it become someone else's fault? I don't want to be a jerk about it, because he's a good friend, but this could also be a costly repair if it involves the timing belt. Somehow i don't think that would've just "happened" without it being loose to begin with. What would you guys do?

    Since I'll already have it in the shop, im also getting a compression/leak down test to see how my rings are doing. (getting a bit of smoke at idle on rare occasions...thinking blown turbo...)

    Cliff notes: car broke, possibly because of a loose nut from previous maintenance work, what to do?

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    Registered User jcsti's Avatar
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    does the shop you took it to have a warranty for there work? Do they also have you sign a waiver of some sort?

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    No waiver signed. And they DO warranty their work. So if it IS their fault, and they can see that is the case, then i know they will fix it.

    My question is has it been too long since the maintenance, to the failure? I'm taking it in tomorrow morning.

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    Registered User The_Buck's Avatar
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    Thats quite the problem. Especially when your good friends with they guy. i'd have a talk with him and see what his thoughts are, he most likely wouldn't want to help pay for any of it but idk. especially if its a blown turbo and so forth... thats a rough place to be in
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Buck View Post
    Thats quite the problem. Especially when your good friends with they guy. i'd have a talk with him and see what his thoughts are, he most likely wouldn't want to help pay for any of it but idk. especially if its a blown turbo and so forth... thats a rough place to be in
    Well the blown turbo won't have anything to do with the idler pulley. I don't mind if its the turbo thats blown. Better than the alternative.

    Ya its a tough spot. I'm going to talk with him about it, and see if he'll at least do the work for cost, and do the compression check for free. I figure thats a pretty good compromise.

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    At that point it all really depends on the particular shop. Most of the ones I go to offer a one year warranty on all work done. some however only do 30 days. Good luck man!

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    Registered User jcsti's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xsnapshot View Post
    No waiver signed. And they DO warranty their work. So if it IS their fault, and they can see that is the case, then i know they will fix it.

    My question is has it been too long since the maintenance, to the failure? I'm taking it in tomorrow morning.
    you can't say for sure till you know exactly what went wrong take it back to them

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    Quote Originally Posted by jcsti View Post
    you can't say for sure till you know exactly what went wrong take it back to them
    I do know what happened though. Its clearly evident in looking at the damage.

    I was sitting at a light about two blocks from home last night and i hear a "dink da dink"....(a few seconds of silence) then a strange whirring/flapping noise. I immediately put it in neutral and looked at my oil pressure and coolant temp. Normal. Ok something just fell off my car i thought. I started to get a horrible smell of burning coming through the vents. I know if its the timing belt my engine would've already quit, and since i have oil pressure i limp it home. Then i discover the nut on the AC idler/tensioner pulley was missing and there were bits of belt wound around the alternator pulley.


    I guess it comes down to whether or not they are willing to cover it. *crosses fingers*

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    Registered User jcsti's Avatar
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    if thats the case they need to fix this

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    Moderator Donkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xsnapshot View Post
    I dont THINK the timing belt was harmed at all, judging from the brief glance i had at it today (didnt have time to take anything apart).
    How would it effected the timing belt? The timing assembly has a protective cover (aka timing cover) just for that reason.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donkey View Post
    How would it effected the timing belt? The timing assembly has a protective cover (aka timing cover) just for that reason.
    Because when the idler pulley nut came off, the tension on the belt ground it into the timing case, cracking it. Its pushed into the timing case a little ways. Maybe 1/4-3/8". I took the idler arm and pulley off tonight and cleaned up the area a bit. Haven't taken the cover off yet, but it needs to be replaced too.

    I was worried that the pulley was getting pushed into the timing case far enough that it could be wearing on the belt in some form. That and I was also worried that there could be small bits of plastic and belt that could've gotten into the timing case.

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    Ok well the car is at the shop. They won't be able to work on it until tomorrow, and their going to have to order a timing cover because Subaru didn't have one in stock (weird).

    Anyway, i won't find out what portion of the bill they are going to cover until monday. I'll update then.

    I'm nervous about my compression check. If it comes out good, I'm getting the 19T upgrade done this spring, along with a hotside ported for EWG. If it comes out bad...well...then I'm just gonna drive it until it dies i guess, and not do any more power mods.

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    Update

    I have the car back. Got it back on monday but forgot to post up. The shop covered most of the labor, and total bill wound up around 110ish. Not bad I thought. It was sort of a compromise since it had been so long since the original work was done.

    That being said i'm glad i have her back! Last night i cranked the boost up in the upper RPM's on the 90 oct. I decided why not give it a try. Im flowing 4.3 MAF v solid on 90 oct with peak boost of 16.5 psi to 5000 RPM, tapering to 13.5 at redline. I've left timing up top alone and it seems to still like it.

    As far as I'm concerned there can't be more than 10-15whp difference up top between 90 oct and E85. (from 5.5k-7k) Torque down low is a whole other story.

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    Moderator Donkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xsnapshot View Post

    As far as I'm concerned there can't be more than 10-15whp difference up top between 90 oct and E85. (from 5.5k-7k) Torque down low is a whole other story.
    Glad to hear you got it fixed! On the stock turbo your limited boost wise but you can run much more timing. Maybe another 2-4 and taper boost to 14.5- 15psi. I think you could see more like 20-25whp up top on E85 compared to 90.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donkey View Post
    Glad to hear you got it fixed! On the stock turbo your limited boost wise but you can run much more timing. Maybe another 2-4 and taper boost to 14.5- 15psi. I think you could see more like 20-25whp up top on E85 compared to 90.
    Ya i need to go back and remap my boost. On E85 I had left it alone from the summer when i was tapering to 13.5. I think in this cooler weather it should be able to reach 14.5 for sure! The only problem is, until i get opensource, or Cobb releases a better version of AccessTUNER, i can't use E85 anymore this winter. I posted a thread on their forum asking for help, but I'm guessing they want to leave some things locked so you have a "reason" to get a protune. In the mean time I'll see just how much i can push 90 octane fuel.

    What I'm wondering is, how are there not more people with this problem? People that have installed larger fuel injectors and are now having issues with cranking because of the excess fuel. What are you doing now Donkey? With the larger fuel injectors? I'm guessing you've been able to modify the cranking pulsewidth in RR to account for it?

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