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This information relates to a 2003 Renault Clio. 1.2 16V D4F Engine. This was done June 2008.

I offer this in the hope that it may help others, it worked for me so I am sure others may find it useful.

This information is supplied to help other DIY ers. If anyone wants to use it for commercial use or commercial gain please ask.

Please Note. This information relates to the Renault D4F Engine. This is a 1.2 16V Engine has a single Cog driving the Cams and is different to other Engines fitted to Renaults. Make sure that you have the D4F Engine by looking at some of the pictures below and comparing with what yours looks like. Some of the other Engines in the Renault range will be completely different and will require different techniques and methods as those described below.

 

It was time to replace the Cam Belt on the wife's Clio as she had the car from new for five years. I had read lots of stuff from manuals and various message boards on how to replace the Cam Belt and the advise was to replace the Cam Belt at 75000 miles or five years whatever was soonest. The information I had read while helpful still left me somewhat confused. There was information about a special tool to lock the Crankshaft etc but I found none of this was necessary as long as care is taken not to move anything. There was also advise recommending to replace the Water Pump. This is a good idea as to replace it requires removal of the Cam Belt and as the pump only costs £40:00 it was best to do at the same time. Also it is advisable to replace the auxiliary drive belt ( The one that drives the Alternator and other things dependant upon your version ) I did not do this as I had replaced this belt a short while ago. Due to old age brain fade whenever I do a job on a Car I always make notes to remind me how to do things again next time and as I have made these notes and taken pictures I thought I would share in the hope that it would help others. I have done this when I do work on my Car a 1972 Scimitar ( see www.donkennedy.co.uk ). Any information regards the Water Pump can be ignored if you are only changing the Belt although I strongly recommend you replace the Water Pump as if the Pump fails it will cause damage to the Cam Belt resulting in severe damage to the engine. When a Cam Belt breaks the Engine does not get damaged a little bit, it gets damaged a lot. There are no special tools required apart from a normal socket set, a small Torx screwdriver to remove the inner splash guard, a 6mm allen key to fit the tensioner and a special spark plug spanner, see below. You will also need a few cable ties as there are a couple of clips that hold stuff, these clips are very fragile and brake as soon as you look at them, cables ties will be required to replace the broken clips. The sharp eyes amongst you will notice what looks like lots of black paint etc. This is waxoyl that I have applied to the Car in all the vulnerable places like inside doors, underneath, in the chassis etc and in areas of the Engine bay. It may not be necessary but make me feel better as the wife is the type of Car owner who buys a Car from new and keeps it until if collapses in a heap on the roadside so any protection I can apply will help to prolong the life of the car. Any reference to left or right must be thought of as if you are sitting in the drivers seat so right means the offside, that is the side away from the kerb assuming you are in a country that drive on the correct side of the road, that is the left.

The Cam Belt Kit I used was a Continental, Part Number: CT1045 this contained the Belt and Tensioner, the Water Pump was a Quinton Hazell Part Number: QCP 3523 this contained the gasket.

As with all work requiring working under a Car always make sure that the vehicle is well supported. Do not rely on a jack or things like bricks, bricks can and do crumble. A Clio landing on you is guaranteed to give you a sense of humor failure.

It is recommended that the battery is disconnected as you will need to loosen the Alternator and one of the connectors to the Alternator is always live. Make sure you have the Radio Code as it will be required when battery reconnected. You can do this work without disconnecting the battery if you are VERY careful not to make contact with the Alternator connections, you have been warned so take great care as if you do short the Alternator contact when in this area you will be applying the full load of the battery and there will be a VERY big spark.

The first thing to do is to drain the coolant from the engine and radiator. The stuff I had read advised removing the bottom hose from the radiator, a better idea is to remove it from the Water Pump as you will need to do this anyway. Undo the two bolts holding the hose to the Pump and push the hose down below the level of the bottom of the radiator. Remove the Cap on the filler/expansion bottle and the drain nipple and allow the coolant to drain. This can be a bit messy so a good idea is to do this outside in the road. There are some who would want to save the coolant but why not replace with new, it's not expensive and it is more than coolant, it helps prevent corrosion inside the engine waterways so best to replace. Remember when driving the Car back to where you are doing the work do so as quickly as possible as there is no coolant in the engine.

Picture below shows bottom hose unbolted from Water Pump. Push hose down below bottom of radiator to drain coolant.

Remove Alternator belt ( Yours may have other things driven by this belt ) by slackening the bolt at the top and the bolt at the bottom, only one bolt at the bottom, undo from the connection end of the alternator. If there are other things driven by this belt take note of how the Belt runs over the pulleys. Remember if you have not disconnected the battery take care. If you look at the picture above you will see a red lead going to the alternator, this is live all of the time when battery connected so easy to make contact when undoing the bottom alternator bolt.

Picture below shows Air Filter. Remove Air Filter Lid and Filter by unhooking the hose from the Lid, undoing the two bolts and hinging the lid forward and unhooking it. You will also need to remove the Air inlet pipe from the lid. This is done by pushing in the location lug on the inlet connection to the housing.

Picture below shows Air Filter with Lid removed showing location of Cylinder Block coolant bleed nipple.

Once all coolant drained you will need to remove the spark plugs. These can be accessed by removing the Engine Top Cover.

 

This cover is removed by pushing in the three lugs as shown below.

Once the cover is removed you will see this.

The spark plugs will need to be removed to enable you to turn the engine later, the H.T. Leads will have to be removed to do this. Take care not to pull on the leads but to pull using the plastic bits. These are very fragile and are broken easy as can be seen in the picture. This was done by a Renault garage so even the dealers get it wrong. Unless you have something that will fit you will need a special spark plug spanner to fit into the hole and to fit onto the spark plugs. These are not expensive, I obtained one from my local Partco/Unipart dealer for £8:00. The Partco/Unipart part number is TMITMSWPS14L. This Spark Plug Spanner is common for a number of makes of cars and was on the shelf and did not require a special order. The spanner can be seen below.

Once the spark plugs have been removed jack up the right front of the Car and remove the road wheel, make sure that the Car is well supported. You will now see this. Take note the jack you can see is only there to support the engine and is not supporting the car.

Remove the inner splash guard. This is done by undoing the screws around the wheel arch and mud flap, note that there is a screw holding the front of the splash guard that is under the front of the splash guard and cannot be seen unless you lie down and look up. Once these screws are removed remove the plastic rivet things. Take care as these plastic rivet things can be broken it you do not take care. What you are removing can be seen below.

Once the slash guard is removed you will see this.

If you look up you will see this.

Now support the Engine on it's right side as you will be removing the engine mount on that side. Place a piece of wood between the Jack and the Engine so as not to damage the sump. That is what the jack is doing above. You only need to gently apply the jack as you only need to support the engine. When the Engine Mount is removed the Engine will move back a small amount.

Now remove the Engine mount as shown below.

The Engine mount looks like this.

Now you need to remove the bottom pulley. The bolt holding this can be tight but is easy removed and has a "normal" thread, anti-clockwise to undo. Put the Car in fourth gear and get someone to press the brake pedal, now you can undo the bolt without the pulley turning. I found using a long handle it was easier to have the handle pointing up between the engine and chassis when undoing the bolt. Once the bolt is removed the pulley can be taken off. No worries about alignment of the pulley are there is a keyway that aligns with the bottom belt cog. Keep the Car in gear, it will be needed later. Now remove the covers over the Cam Belt area. There are three. Remove the middle one first, two bolts hold it, then remove the bottom cover, one bolt holds it, then remove the top cover, four bolts hold it.

The covers look like this.

Once the covers are removed you will see this.

From above.

From below.

The Water Pump pulley can be seen on the right. Now you will need to align the timing marks of the bottom and top cogs. You will need to do this by turning the engine. This is easy, make sure that the car is still in fourth gear and if you refit two road wheel bolts you can place a bar against the road wheel bolts and by twisting the engine will turn, make sure that you only turn clockwise, never turn anti-clockwise. If you look at the bottom and top cogs you will see an arrow on each cog, turn the engine until the bottom cog arrow is at the bottom aligned with the mark on the engine block and the top cog arrow is at the top. You may need to turn the engine a few times to get them alligned. Once you have aligned both cogs apply a blob of paint to the cog arrows and belt so if there are any problems you know exactly what was where. There were marks on the Belt when new but these marks would have been worn off so none will be seen. Once you are at this stage DO NOT TURN ANY COG. If you count the number of teeth between each paint blob you have made it should be the same as the new Cam Belt. The New belt will have marks that should be in the same position as the paint blobs you have made. The marks on the new belt can be seen below. Before you remove the tensioner note the position of the belt in relation to the cogs, i.e. how central the belt is on the cogs, you will need to remember this when fitting the new belt. Also twist the Belt to see how much tension there is. Noting the amount the Belt can twist will help in reassuring you that the new Belt is correct when it is fitted. Now remove the Tensioner.

Pictures of the new Belt can be seen below, note the marks on the Belt, these marks are used to align when fitting.

Assuming you are happy with all your checks remove the Belt. If you are changing the Water Pump now is the time to do so. Remove all the bolts holding the Pump, take care as there are some that cannot be seen, use a small mirror to look. Once all bolts are off remove the Pump. It may be a bit reluctant so do not be be tempted to use a screwdriver to lever off as you do not want to damage or scratch any surface or you could have problems getting a good seal when fitting the new Pump. Once the old Pump and gasket are removed clean the mating surfaces to ensure a good seal. Make sure that you have cleaned really well as you do not want any leaks. The picture below shows the Water Pump removed.

The new Water Pump looks like this.

Apply a good quality gasket sealer to the new gasket and fit to the Engine then apply sealer to the pump and fit. Fit and tighten bolts, tighten to 9 Nm, 7 ft/lbs. There is no need to apply lots of gasket sealer as you do not want any to squeeze out, allowing sealer to become loose and get mixed with the coolant.

Now fit the new timing belt. Fit the belt on the bottom cog first making sure that the mark on the belt aligns with the arrow then run belt around Water Pump pulley and fit on the top cog making sure that the mark on the belt aligns with the arrow on the top cog. Do not worry if the bottom cog falls off, it is located on a keyway to align. Note that the belt can be fitted the wrong way round, if you have got it right the two marks on the new belt will align easy with the arrows on the cogs, if you have the belt the wrong way around the marks on the belt will be a long way off but the Belt should have arrows showing the way to fit, i.e. the way the Belt rotates. Now fit the tensioner. The new tensioner is fitted with a pin to hold the spring in the tensioner in the correct position until tensioner fitted. Picture of the tensioner with pin fitted is shown below.

Now fit the tensioner. This was something that caused me confusion as there are two bits sticking out of the tensioner that I was unsure what they were for. They are there to align and hold the tensioner in the correct position onto the engine. These bits can be seen in the picture below.

The tensioner fits as shown in the picture below.

If you look before you remove the old tensioner you can just see the lugs but you will need to look very carefully to see. Fit the new tensioner making sure that the lugs are located correctly and making sure the new belt is around the tensioner correctly. Align the belt on the cogs so it is central or wherever as you noted as above.

Once the new Tensioner is fitted remove the pin and using a 6mm Allen Key turn the Tensioner anti-clockwise until the pointers are in the position in the picture below.

Tighten the Tensioner Nut ( 24 Nm ) then turn the Engine six full turns ( Using the Wheel hub as described above ). Slacken Tensioner nut and using the Allen Key turn the Tensioner clockwise until the lugs are aligned as in picture below.

Now tighten the Tensioner nut ( 24Nm ). All should now be correct.

The picture below looks a bit strange but note this is viewed with a mirror so what you see in the mirror is upside down. This picture was taken before the old Tensioner was removed.

Once you are happy with the tensioner position turn the engine ( Via the wheel hub as described above ) six time and check that the belt is still in the correct position, i.e. the marks on the belt are still aligned with the arrows on the cogs. The reason for turning the engine six time is it takes that many rotations for the timing marks to be in the correct position. Do not make the same mistake as me and turn the engine two many times as it will look like the marks are not aligned correctly. There will be a point when the bottom cog arrow is pointing down correctly and the top cog arrow is pointing up. Check the tensioner is still correct and all is now complete. Check that you have tightened the tensioner bolt. Twist the new Belt to make sure that it is the same ( or similar ) to what you noted before you removed the old Belt, the only reason I did this was to give me some assurance that all was O.K.

Now as all the good books say assembly is the reverse of the above and in this case it is true. When fitting the covers fit the middle one last, I don't think it makes a lot of difference but looking at the way they fit together fitting the middle cover last makes sense. When covers fitted fit bottom pulley. I suggest using some type of thread sealer on the pulley bolt ( Locktite ? ). When fitting the bottom pulley make sure that the keyway is aligned with the bottom cog and as above get someone to press the brake pedal while you are tightening it ( Making sure that the car is still in gear ) tighten to 40 Nm +70 degrees +/- 5 degrees. This means tighten to 40 Nm then turn another 70 degrees. Fit the top engine mount, remove the jack from under the engine, fit spark plugs, fit H.T. leads, fit top engine cover, fit Alternator belt. Remember if you have not disconnected the battery take care. The connector at the end of the alternator is live all of the time when the battery is connected.

If you have not replaced the Water Pump ( Mad Fool ) all will be ready to start up. Before you do so check you have not left any tools under the bonnet and all is fitted and you have no bits left over. Just before you start the engine I suspect you will have that moment of doubt is all OK. Be brave as long as you checked the marks on the belt aligned with the arrows on the cogs nothing can go wrong.

If you have replaced the Water Pump refit the bottom hose and make sure that you have tightened the bleed screw under the Air Filter, refill with coolant, do not fit Air Filter cover yet. Best to use new coolant and my preference is a 50 / 50 mixture of new Antifreeze/Coolant and water. That will give protection to any winter temperatures likely in the UK and give greater corrosion protection. Be aware that Anti Freeze / Coolant is more than stuff to stop the water freezing, it has stuff that prevents corrosion and will also help with water pump bearings etc. Fill via the filler/expansion bottle until below the Max mark then place a rag below the bleed nipple under the air Filter and un screw it, wait until the air has been removed and only coolant is flowing, replace bleed cap. Start engine and allow to get to correct temperature. When temperature correct remove cap from filler/expansion bottle ( Take care, use a rag to protect your hand, unscrew cap slowly as things will be very hot and there will be pressure ) when cap removed and pressure released undo bleed nipple to release any trapped air, refit bleed nut. It is likely that the coolant level will have dropped so top up to between the Max and Min marks, do not be tempted to over fill as this is why it is called an expansion bottle, the level rises when the engine is hot and to over fill will just mean that to much coolant will be pushed out. Fit Air Filter and cover and make sure pipe is located in clip on cover. The next day when the engine is cold check the coolant level again as it changes slightly when cold and undo the bleed nipple to make sure any trapped air is removed. The best time to check coolant level is when cold, make sure the level is between the Max and Min marks.

I suggest that you keep the engine revs down a bit for a few miles as the new Belt will be a bit stiff. This is only my preference.

I hope this has made sense and was of use. One thing I noticed while doing this job was a trap for mud and dirt which could cause corrosion. When I removed the Mud Flap on inner splash guard I noticed a build up of mud and dirt. In this area this could remain wet/moist and potentially cause corrosion. I know the wings are made of plastic but the other areas are not. While I was in this area I cleaned dried and painted on Waxoyl filling the whole area so nothing could get in there again. I did of course do both sides. The picture below shows what I mean by a mud trap.

 

 

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