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2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

 
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Old 13 Dec 2012, 09:15 am
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Question 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

Hey all, have a few questions about this car. Its my buddies wifes car, a 2001 with about 125,xxx miles on it. Its been hemoraging coolant lately, we found a leaking side tank on the radiator, replaced that. However now the waterpump is leaking coolant pretty fast. I think the timing belt is rather overdue for a change anyhow.

The only snafu I am running into is that there are 2 different types of belt tensioners available, was this a midyear change or was the first prone to failure? It looks like 2003+ all came with the "new" style of it. Would it be safe to figure that this has the old style from the factory? If not, how can I tell before ordering the parts? I don't want to get it torn down to have to wait on parts to come in.

If it does, what is our motivation to spend another $60-$90 to buy the kit that has everything to convert to the new setup rather then to just replace with the first design stuff?

I was reading up on the job itself and it mentioned something about having to purge the AC system? is that really true???

Also, I saw a post indicating I should be using "HOAT" coolant... is that important if the entire system is flushed first? I come from the GM world mostly and mixing Dexcool and anything else is bad news. Would I be able to fill it with the "mix with anything" stuff provided all the old is purged? Or just suck it up and put all HOAT back in? I know its been mixed with a bunch of different coolants in the past so either way it will probably need flushed.

thanks!

Last edited by White93z34; 13 Dec 2012 at 09:21 am.
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Old 13 Dec 2012, 10:20 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by White93z34 View Post
Hey all, have a few questions about this car. Its my buddies wifes car, a 2001 with about 125,xxx miles on it. Its been hemoraging coolant lately, we found a leaking side tank on the radiator, replaced that. However now the waterpump is leaking coolant pretty fast. I think the timing belt is rather overdue for a change anyhow.

The only snafu I am running into is that there are 2 different types of belt tensioners available, was this a midyear change or was the first prone to failure? It looks like 2003+ all came with the "new" style of it. Would it be safe to figure that this has the old style from the factory? If not, how can I tell before ordering the parts? I don't want to get it torn down to have to wait on parts to come in.

If it does, what is our motivation to spend another $60-$90 to buy the kit that has everything to convert to the new setup rather then to just replace with the first design stuff?

I was reading up on the job itself and it mentioned something about having to purge the AC system? is that really true???

Also, I saw a post indicating I should be using "HOAT" coolant... is that important if the entire system is flushed first? I come from the GM world mostly and mixing Dexcool and anything else is bad news. Would I be able to fill it with the "mix with anything" stuff provided all the old is purged? Or just suck it up and put all HOAT back in? I know its been mixed with a bunch of different coolants in the past so either way it will probably need flushed.

thanks!
OK, one by one, welcome to the forum.

There was a mid-year change in the tensioner and all 2004 (late 2003) have the new tensioner. Nobody has ever said what was wrong with the old tensioner but they all lasted for 100,000 miles so it couldn't be anything bad. Most of us get our "kits" from RockAuto Auto Parts and if you look in the vendors section, RockAuto has some rebates going on till the end of the month. They also have good prices and fast shipping.

Some have had to move A/C lines and purge the system, others didn't. If you look in the section your in now and look for the "HOW TO" thread, about 5 posts on changing the timing belt with tips and tricks.

Chrysler recommends the "HOAT" coolant and says internal damage could be done if anything else is used. I'ts up to you but certainly mixing anything up won't be any good for any system.
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Old 13 Dec 2012, 10:33 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

Its kinda my thoughts on the matter, this one has lasted 125,xxx miles. I don't see why a new one of the original style would not last another. Its roughly twice the cost to retrofit to the new style one, rather then replace with the original one.

As for Rockauto, they sent me a Christmas card this year Not sure how much you have to blow with them to get that but... we'll just say I'm pretty aware of them I do own a few GMs afterall!

Anyhow, I'll see how available this HOAT coolant is, either way I'll flush it out and fill with either that or the mix with anything jazz.

Short of the tight access the job does not look too bad, If I can do this without having to mess with purging the AC system that will be perfect.
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Old 13 Dec 2012, 10:42 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

As I mentioned, about 5 posts on the subject in the HOW TO thread. Also plenty of talk if you do a search on the forum or on Google under "pt cruiser timing belt".
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Old 13 Dec 2012, 11:01 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

I been checking that out, don't worry. I'll be searching and reading more before I get into it. Thanks.
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Old 14 Dec 2012, 07:15 pm
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Default Re: 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

I stayed with the original tensioner setup with my 2001,2.4. The timeing belt had lost a serie
se of teeth but the rollers seemed to be in perfect health at 93k.Changed water pump at this time also.
You also have to modify the belt inner cover to change the setup.
This is a 5 wrench job, 1 wrench being easy,5 being difficult for a hobby wrencher like me.
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Old 14 Dec 2012, 08:02 pm
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Default Re: 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by ronpolley View Post
I stayed with the original tensioner setup with my 2001,2.4. The timeing belt had lost a serie
se of teeth but the rollers seemed to be in perfect health at 93k.Changed water pump at this time also.
You also have to modify the belt inner cover to change the setup.
This is a 5 wrench job, 1 wrench being easy,5 being difficult for a hobby wrencher like me.
Agreed.

I can change a timing belt and water pump in 2-3 hours now.............7 years ago when i did my first one. lets just say i spent 5 days and botched the job anyway :-/ good thing i only paid $250 for that car haha because it was dead when i got done with it :/
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Old 02 Jan 2013, 03:07 pm
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Default Re: 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

Just finished this last night. Stupid gasket didn't take right or slipped out and it leaked like a siv the first time. Had to tear it down all over again yesterday. New gasket and its fine now. What a pain. Probably the worst, most involved timing belt job I've ever done.... Actually the timing belt part was not any more difficult then any other I've done, it was the getting to it that was awful. That stupid metal engine mount bracket was the worst thing to get in or out.

It LOOKS like the torque strut bracket can be removed. But I didn't as the bolts felt rusted in place and didn't want to risk sheering one off. Had I been able to get that off it would have been FAR easier.

Also I didn't remove the AC to do it. I was able to slide everything in and out without disconnecting it.

I used the old style tensioner didn't see any reason to spend the money to move to the new setup.

Thanks for the advise, with any luck the car will go back to being reliable transportation for another 100,000 miles.

BTW is the timing belt interval 100,000 or 60,000 miles on one of these?
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  #9 (permalink)  
Old 07 Jan 2013, 12:58 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Timingbelt and coolant questions

The interval for replacing the timing belt is actually 90,000 according to my Haynes (2001-2009).
__________________
2001 LE, 168,000 miles.
One of the split seats went into a dumpster in Tulsa. The arm rest unscrewed and fell off. It's on its 2nd timing belt. Surviving the Upper Peninsula winters.
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