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Forum:Technical Questions & Answers
Topic:Timing Belt Service - How to
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T O P I C     R E V I E W
Prowlerjay31Prowler Timing Belt and Water Pump Replacement

I know there are MANY posts about the timing belt replacement here, but I didn’t find one that was step-by-step. I also had utilized the 1400+ page service manual and the steps required are not all in one spot. I thought it would be helpful to document this and put up a thread for others to use when it comes time to do this service.

Please note: I take absolutely no responsibility for you not using the utmost common sense and safety during this project, as well as bear no responsibility for any possible damage you cause to your car. This is just my “non-mechanic” notes. 😊

Special Tools Used:
- Prowler Miller 6999 Toolkit. This kit has many tools for various Prowler specific repairs but the Miller 8191 tool was extremely helpful to hold the harmonic balancer in place when removing and re-installing.
- 3” 3-Jaw Puller - I bought a 3-piece set at Harbor Freight that included 3”, 4” and 6” pullers. The 3” worked perfect and the full kit was only $22 https://www.harborfreight.com/three-jaw-puller-set-3-piece-63953.html
- Radiator hose pliers (work way better than slip joint pliers)
- Miller 6792 Harmonic Balancer install tool. I have seen others who have made a similar tool, but for the $50 I spent on ebay this was well worth it.
- Miller 7198A Belt Tension Gauge – I have heard these engines are very finicky with the accessory and A/C belt tension.
- Braun 500 Lumen Magnetic Rechargeable Light Not required, but this light was super helpful and fit so well in the space. https://www.harborfreight.com/500-lumen-led-rechargeable-magnetic-handheld-foldable-slim-bar-work-light-59536.html?_br_psugg_q=led+light

Parts Used:
- Murray/Gates Timing Belt Kit 20423K with water pump, tensioner, and tensioner pulley
- Accessory Belt – Bando 6PK1345
- AC Belt – Bando 2550
Optional: Set the parking brake, and place a wheel chock behind the rear wheel. Then jack the front of the car up off the ground (brings the car to a better working height and gives better access. You could use ramps, but due to the shape of the prowler you are going to be doing a lot of work from the sides of the car. I also found it helpful to turn the front wheels all the way to the right so I could stand right next to the fender comfortably. Additionally, I removed the driver and passenger fenders due to the fact they are so easy to take off and wanted to avoid any scratching to them. Finally, to prep I applied masking tape to the headlights again to avoid any scratches.

Removal Steps:
1. Disconnect Battery

2. Remove under hood support bars (2)
a. 2 Rear bolts (13M)
b. 2 Front bolts (10M)

3. Remove radiator support bracket
a. 2 Bolts (13M)
b. 2 Nuts (10M)

4. Remove Fan
a. Disconnect fan wiring – slide red locking tab and push release button and pull back connector
b. 2 bolts –(10M) and retaining clips that need to be removed
c. Battery wiring is clipped into the fan – remove clip

5. Drain Radiator
a. Place a large enough drain pan under the drain petcock (pass side)
b. Make sure to protect the area around the radiator drain. I used plastic sheeting to direct the coolant to the drain pan
c. Open drain petcock and let coolant drain
d. Once fully drained close petcock

6. Remove upper radiator hose from radiator and engine

7. Remove lower radiator hose from radiator. You can leave it connected to the engine unless you are replacing the hose.

8. Remove radiator
a. 2 bolts (10M) that connect the radiator to the A/C condenser
b. Carefully slide the radiator up and out. You will need to maneuver this carefully so a 2nd person to help is preferred
c. Suggest that the A/C condenser is secured. I used some small bungie cords to pull it securely forward
d. I also suggest cutting a piece of cardboard to straddle over the top and back of the A/C condenser to protect it when working in the engine bay

9. Loosen accessory belt tensioner
a. Loosen locking nut (15M)
b. Loosen adjustment nut (13M)

10. Remove accessory belt

11. Remove accessory belt tensioner
a. 3 Bolts (13M)

12. Loosen A/C belt tensioner
a. Loosen locking nut (15M)
b. Loosen adjustment nut (13M)

13. Remove A/C belt

14. Remove A/C belt guide – 1 nut (13M)

15. Remove Harmonic Balancer
a. Use Miller 8191 attached to a breaker bar to hold in place
b. Backout bolt (18M) roughly ¼ inch (no more than that)
c. Remove Miller 8191
d. Use 3” 3 jaw puller to start pulling the balancer out
e. Take off 3 jaw puller and remove 18M bolt (there are not enough threads to use the bolt to remove the balancer without possibly messing up the threads
f. I used a 4” long ¼” socket extension to slide into the threaded hole which the 18M bolt was removed from. Additionally, I wrapped tape around the extension to make sure
there was no play and the extension stayed in there straight
g. Use 3 jaw pully to pull the balancer off the crankshaft

16. Remove lower timing belt cover
a. 3 bolts (10M)

17. Remove mid timing belt cover
a. 8 bolts (10M)

18. Remove upper timing belt cover
a. 4 Bolts (10M)

19. Rotate crank to TDC (There is an arrow marking on the top of the crank sprocket and one on the engine block. Also ensure that both cams are within the cam marks; both the
sprocket and engine. I also marked with a paint marker the belt, cam and engine at each cam and the crank sprocket and belt as well. The more reference to where the belt
was the better. Also marked which sprocket was which on the belt.

20. Remove Timing belt. IMPORTANT: Do not move the cam sprockets at any point while belt is removed. That could compromise the timing of the engine and could result in engine failure.

21. Remove tensioner pin assembly
a. 2 bolts (13M)

22. Remove timing belt tensioner pulley or bearing (depending on which kit you have) I replaced the full pulley
a. 1 bolt (15M)

23. Replace timing belt tensioner and tighten bolt (15M) to 45 ft/lbs Note: Be sure that the tensioner pulley is in place while tightening bolt. If you let it hang there while
tightening it will get caught up on the engine casting on an angle while tightening.

24. Remove water pump
a. 6 bolts (10M)

25. Install new water pump
a. Lightly lube o ring with synthetic grease
b. Carefully align water pump and ensure o ring stays in place
c. Install and tighten 6 (10M) bolts to 105 in/lbs

26. Re install timing belt
a. I probably went way overboard but I sat with the old timing belt and made the same paint marks on the new belt by counting teeth so the marks were exact.
b. Start belt on the crank and then to the drivers side cam sprocket. Make sure to align you new marks on the belt with what is on the cam without moving the cam. Once you
have it in place wedging something gently next to the cam sprocket/belt will keep it in place
c. Route the belt under the water pump pulley
d. Keep tension and attach the belt to the passenger side cam sprocket making sure marks on the new belt, cam and timing marks are aligned.
e. Make sure the back of the belt is routed around the tensioner pully
f. Make sure you are confident that the belt is routed successfully and all marks are aligned

27. Install new tensioner DO NOT pull the pin until installed (if reusing there is a procedure to compress the pin slowly in a vice and install a pin, I suggest replacing vs
a. Install 2 (13M) bolts and tighten to 250 in/lbs
b. Pull the retaining pin

28. Rotate crank 2 times and ensure that the timing marks on the crank and both cams are aligned properly. Note the marks on the belt will be In different spots since 2
rotations of the crank does not equal 2 turns of the belt.

29. Install upper timing belt cover
a. Install 4 (10M) bolts and tighten to 10 ft/lbs

30. Install mid timing belt cover
a. Install 8 (10M) bolts and tighten to 10 ft/lbs

31. Install lower timing belt cover
a. Install 3 (10M) bolts and tighten to 10 ft/lbs

32. Install Harmonic Balancer
a. Align harmonic balancer on crankshaft, ensure it is straight
b. Thread Miller 6792 harmonic Balancer install tool into crankshaft and hand tighten in place
c. Use a breaker bar attached to Miller 8191 tool to hold balancer in place
d. Tighten miller 8191 tool until balancer is fully seated
e. Install (18M) bolt and tighten to 70 ft/lbs

33. Install A/C belt
a. Use (13M) adjustment bolt to adjust belt tension
b. Utilize belt tension tool to check tension and adjust accordingly (Used belt 120 lbs ; New Belt 150 lbs)
c. Tighten locking bolt to 40 ft/lbs and recheck belt tension

34. Install A/C belt guide
a. Make sure guide is not touching belt
b. Install and tighten (13M) nut to 40 ft/lbs

35. Install accessory belt idler pulley
a. Install and tighten 3 bolts (13M) to 40 ft/lbs

36. Install accessory belt
a. Use (13M) adjustment bolt to adjust belt tension
b. Utilize belt tension tool to check tension and adjust accordingly (Used belt 120 lbs ; New Belt 190 lbs)
c. Tighten locking bolt to 40 ft/lbs and recheck belt tension
37. Install radiator and attach to A/C condenser with 2 bolts (10M)

38. Attach upper & Lower radiator hoses

39. Install Fan
a. Install retaining clips and 2 bolts (10M)
b. Plug in fan and press in red locking clip
c. Attach battery wring to hole in fan shroud

40. Install radiator support bracket
a. 2 Bolts (13M)
b. 2 Nuts (10M)

41. Install under hood support bars (2)
a. 2 Rear bolts (13M)
b. 2 Front bolts (10M)

42. Connect battery

43. Refill coolant system
a. Make sure radiator petcock is closed
b. Open coolant system bleed valve (brass valve at top front center of engine) and attach ¼ hose to bleed valve and into a clean bottle on the ground.
c. Slowly fill coolant reservoir; carefully squeezing (burb) the top radiator hose sometimes help get the fluid flow into the motor and radiator
d. Fill until coolant reservoir is full and coolant is coming out of the ¼ hose (wont be a constant stream)
e. Relocate hose from the bottle on the floor to the coolant reservoir, make sure it is away from any moving engine parts
f. Check for leaks
g. Start engine and occasionally squeeze upper radiator house to let air out of system, when there is no air, it should be a steady stream of coolant from the hose to the
h. Upper radiator hose should get hot when the thermostat opens
i. Turn off engine
j. Close coolant bleed valve and tighten to 70 in/lbs
k. I also parked on my driveway with the nose heading downhill and burped the upper radiator hose with the coolant reservoir open again
l. Install coolant reservoir cap
m. Take the car for a short drive and try to hit some corners to get all the air out of the system. Keep an eye on the temp gauge. Depending on ambient temperature it could
climb just above the half mark but should come down to just below with the fan. If temp climbs higher you still may have air in the system and need to address.

44. Enjoy your ride knowing you don’t have to worry about an old timing belt! 😊

That’s it! Hopefully this will be helpful to someone in the future!!

This message has been edited by Prowlerjay31 on 03-24-2024 at 01:07 PM

Ross LGreat write up! I will definitely use when I attempt mine this summer. Appreciate it.
RPLThank you for taking the time to detail your work and sharing useful tools.
tbonelynchHere's a good video on replacing the belt on a 300 with the same 3.5 H.O. engine. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQQol9n3Xv0
garysssThanks for taking the time to post step by step detailed instructions. This will help anyone doing timing belt and/or water pump and belts.
2000SunCityWonderful information. I will be doing this in a couple of months, great effort. Thank you! Tim
ed monahanImpressive post. Thanks for all that effort that you put into it.
padrooI did my timing belt last spring and was going to do a YouTube video on it, but I got lazy.
Richnew41Super fantastic!!!! Thank you so much….
I did mine in 2015 with my last Prowler and now thinking of when to do this on my 01’…. This sure brought back memories and I’m on the fence if I should just have it done at the dealership….. for someone like myself it’s not what I consider an easy job and quite stress filled that I may screw up something….
This was a great post…
Thanks for taking the time to share….
ed monahanA "no brainer" for me. Take it to Ernie, the Prowler tech. I admire you guys for being able to do your own. Way above my skill level.

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