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Repair operations possible with the engine in the vehicle
In-car engine repair procedures / Repair operations possible with the engine in the vehicle


The following major repair operations can be accomplished without removing the engine from the vehicle. However, owners should note that any operation involving the removal of the sump requires careful forethought, depending on the level of skill and the tools and facilities available; refer to the relevant text for details.

(a) Compression pressure - testing.

(b) Cylinder head cover - removal and refitting.

(c) Timing belt covers - removal and refitting.

(d) Timing belt - renewal.

(e) Timing belt tensioner and toothed pulleys - removal and refitting.

(f) Camshaft oil seals - renewal.

(g) Camshafts and hydraulic tappets - removal and refitting.

(h) Cylinder head - removal, overhaul and refitting.

(i) Cylinder head and pistons - decarbonising.

(j) Sump - removal and refitting.

(k) Crankshaft oil seals - renewal.

(l) Oil pump - removal and refitting.

(m) Piston/connecting rod assemblies - removal and refitting (but see note below).

(n) Flywheel/driveplate - removal and refitting.

(o) Engine/transmission mountings - removal and refitting.

Clean the engine compartment and the exterior of the engine with some type of degreaser before any work is done. It will make the job easier, and will help to keep dirt out of the internal areas of the engine.

Depending on the components involved, it may be helpful to remove the bonnet, to improve access to the engine as repairs are performed (refer to Chapter 11 if necessary).

Cover the wings to prevent damage to the paint; special covers are available, but an old bedspread or blanket will also work.

If vacuum, exhaust, oil or coolant leaks develop, indicating a need for component/ gasket or seal replacement, the repairs can generally be made with the engine in the vehicle. The intake and exhaust manifold gaskets, sump gasket, crankshaft oil seals and cylinder head gasket are all accessible with the engine in place.

Exterior components such as the intake and exhaust manifolds, the sump, the oil pump, the water pump, the starter motor, the alternator and the fuel system components can be removed for repair with the engine in place.

Since the cylinder head can be removed without lifting out the engine, camshaft and valve component servicing can also be accomplished with the engine in the vehicle, as can renewal of the timing belt and toothed pulleys.

In extreme cases caused by a lack of necessary equipment, repair or renewal of piston rings, pistons, connecting rods and big-end bearings is possible with the engine in the vehicle. However, this practice is not recommended, because of the cleaning and preparation work that must be done to the components involved, and because of the amount of preliminary dismantling work required - these operations are therefore covered in Part B of this Chapter.


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