Today we will show you how to replace your timing belt on a B5 generation Audi A4 with the 2.8L V6 engine. The car in this guide is a 1998 Audi A4. It is important that you have the correct tools for this job. You will need the camshaft holder (Audi tool 3391), crankshaft lock pin (Audi tool 3242), and the fan clutch removal tool (Schley tool 63600). As with any timing belt replacement job, it is crucial that you take your time and carefully double check everything that you do. Another point that I can't stress enough is to use quality parts. The hydraulic dampener on this A4 failed after less than 30,000 miles - lucky for me there was no valve damage. So, unless you enjoy changing your timing belt every year, spend a little more for quality parts. This guide will also show you how to replace the water-pump and thermostat.
1. Start by taking off the front bumper - you can follow the steps by reading the Audi A4 B5 Front Bumper Removal guide.
2. Move the carrier out of the way by following the steps found on the Audi A4 B5 Move Carrier Service Position | Removal and Installation | page.
3. With the carrier out of the way, loosen the tension on the serpentine belt by rotating a 17mm wrench clockwise and remove the belt. To make the fan clutch removal easier you can take out the fan blades that are secured with four allen bolts.
4. Remove the right timing cover that is secured with three clips. Flat-head screw drive makes this easy.
5. Remove the left timing cover that is actually made up of two parts. Also remove the serpentine belt tensioner - one bolt.
6. Remove the fan clutch - 32mm wrench works great. It is reverse thread so turn the wrench clockwise to loosen it. You will need some way of holding the pulley while you turn the clutch. An Audi fan clutch holder tool works great for this task.
7. After the fan clutch is out of the way you can remove the idle pulley and bracket. It is secured by four different size allen bolts.
8. Line up the timing marks starting with the crankshaft pulley. Rotate the crankshaft clockwise until the marks line up.
At this point the camshaft "keys" will line up and be facing each other. NOTE: the larger holes should be on the inside and the small holes should be pointing out.
9. You want to make sure that the crankshaft does not move so remove the plastic access plug from the engine and install the crankshaft holder tool. Access plug is on the driver side bottom of the engine (right under the engine mount). Note: The 12V 2.8L (1997 and below) engine has a crankshaft position sensor in that location instead of a plastic plug. Remove the sensor and install the tool in the same spot.