1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

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The timing belt broke on my 92 Legacy Wagon.  I have tried to fix it,
but have failed at several attempts.  I have been following a Chilton's
manual for fixing it, but I just can't get the timing right.  One
problem is that my manual only tells you how to align the timing if the
belt is on...not if it's off (or if it broke).  I aligned the notch on
the crankshaft when the compression started to rise, then rotated the
camshafts until the notches were aligned, and then put the new timing
belt on.  Once I plugged everything up, it wouldn't start.  I thought I
may have had the #1 piston on the wrong stroke, so I rotated the
crankshaft one rotation, while leaving the camshafts where they were
(already lined up), but this didn't work either.  I am not getting
compression, so I am assuming that the timing is just off (since the
car was working fine before the belt broke).  I have read in other
posts that the notch on the crankshaft doesn't line up the piston to
TDC, and you need to line up the arrow on the crankshaft with the notch
above...what do I do?  I'm so confused...

Re: 1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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Hi, Does your engine use one or two timing belts?

I'm not sure of the procedure for timing single belt engines, but on the
two belt models, you align the crank mark (there's a special mark for
this purpose--DON'T use the ignition timing marks!) and the FIRST cam
mark UP and install the inner belt. Then you rotate the engine 360
degrees so the crank mark's again at the top, but your first cam mark is
pointed DOWN (180 deg from where you started.) Then you install the
second belt with that cam mark UP. Failure to follow this procedure will
lead to the same result you've had.

Also, since you're already in there, have you replaced all the seals on
the front of the engine (both cam seals, front crank main seal, O-rings
on back and small seal on front of oil pump?) Many will suggest you
replace the water pump, too, to minimize labor!

Best of luck,


Re: 1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

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My engine has just one timing belt

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All of the procedures I've seen have you align the cams with the timing
marks above them (at 12 o'clock), and again, there's only one belt, so
This wasn't the problem. Any other ideas?


Re: 1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

The procedure Rick offered is for the older EA82 engine.  

Your problem is most likely you used the wrong timing marks down at the
crankshaft balancer.  

Re: 1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

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I believe I did use the wrong timing marks...my Chilton's manual says
to line it up using the crankshaft harmonic balancer, which I
did...unsuccessfully.  I found another article which says to use the
marks on the crankshaft sprocket which I didn't know about until I read
it here:


I am going to try this approach...I hope it works!

Re: 1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

I did a Goggle search for "subaru 2.2 timing installation" and "subaru 2.2
timing belt installation" and found several sites that explains the
procedure with pictures.

Re: 1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

Hi James.

On 21 Aug 2006 09:56:38 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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Procedure for 2.2l.

Compress the tensioner and insert a small drill bit or allen wrench to
hold the piston back. Install the tensioner, slide all of the way
back, and tighten temporarily.

Align notch/line on both cam pulleys (_not_ the arrow) to notch in
rear timing cover (~ at 12:00). Align notch/line on crank pulley to
mark on case (again, not the arrow, and at approx. 12:00). Remove both
R. side idlers (passenger side of engine; the smooth ones).

Note three white lines, and directional arrow(s) on the new belt. Belt
should be installed such that the arrows point in the direction of
rotation. Route the belt around the crank and  cam pulleys, the
tensioner idler, water pump, and L. idler (the cogged one), with the
right line on the belt (right as you're facing the engine) aligned to
the marks on the L. cam pulley, the center line aligned to the mark on
the crank, and the left line aligned to the mark on the R. cam pulley.
(Hope that made sense; it'll only go one way . . .).

Install the upper R. idler, and then the lower. Use a small prybar to
push tensioner toward the belt as far as it will go with reasonable
pressure, tighten securely, and remove the pin restraining the piston.

Double check that all of the above alignment criteria have been
satisfied, all idlers are tight, and re-install the front covers.

If that doesn't get things going, you have something else wrong.

Hope this helps.

ByeBye! S.
Steve Jernigan KG0MB
Laboratory Manager
Microelectronics Research
University of Colorado
(719) 262-3101

Re: 1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

S wrote:

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Compress the tensioner over a period of time not LESS than 3 minutes.
VEEEERRRRYYYY slowly and preferably with a drillpress or other vertical
press. Internal seals can be damaged otherwise.


to reply, change  ( .not)  to  ( .net)

Re: 1992 Legacy Broken Timing Belt

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Steve...I went to UCCS too!  I graduated last year...small world.

It worked!  The probelm was I was aligning the mark on the harmonic
balancer, not the mark on the crankshaft sprocket.  Once I used the
correct mark, my legacy started right up.  I've written an e-mail to
the company that makes my manual so they are aware of the problem.

Thanks everyone for your help!  I really appreciate it!!

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