Should l Replace Tensioner w/Timing Belt ?

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4,717
Getting ready to do a timing belt/water pump change on a '99 Camry V6 due to age. Last belt was done in 2010. What is your opinion as to whether to replace tensioner? I'm getting conflicting info. This car belongs to someone else and they are instructing me to do whatever I think is best. My understanding is it is not normally replaced with the timing belt. It only cost $62 OEM from Dealer.
 
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It is something that is normally replaced. It's common practice to replace everything the timing belt rides on (idlers, tensioner pulley and water pump). IMO it wouldn't be a bad idea to replace the camshaft seals either, common with the that vintage, especially with the age. What's the mileage?
 
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176k. Camshaft seals and valve covers replaced at 148k. What got me confused is PM and service Tech at Lexus says they virtually never replace tensioner when doing a timing belt/water pump change.
 
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Every timing belt job I've ever done I always replaced the hydraulic tensioner. As I stated it's good practice and if it's fails, even halfway through the inverval, you have a big problem.
 
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Thanks for your advice. I appreciate it. Plus the fact it is a 1999 lends me to believe I won't be wasting money.
 
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So right now, I'm doing timing belt, water pump, 2 idlers, tensioner and thermostat (I already have the thermostat). PS and Alt belts done at 148k as well. I premix my Toyota Red and provide it to my indy. The only thing I can think of is if the crank seal is leaking.
 
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Just get the AISIN TKT024 kit. Comes with mostly OE parts including a Japanese tensioner. Less than $157 at rockauto
 
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Short answer: yes. You're in there anyway, might as well do the job once. The dealership/pros may not replace it as a part of the maintenance, but they've got nothing to lose - if it fails, the owner is back with another job for them. wink
 
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Originally Posted by opus1
Short answer: yes. You're in there anyway, might as well do the job once. The dealership/pros may not replace it as a part of the maintenance, but they've got nothing to lose - if it fails, the owner is back with another job for them. wink
THIS!
 
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If it's a hydraulic tensioner, yes, replace it. In my experience, they last about 1.5x as long as the recommended TB interval (that is, often failing in between TB changes). If it's a simple spring, I don't think it's as necessary, but as the cost is fairly low you might as well. So I guess that means you should change the tensioner regardless. One more thing to watch for - the camshaft seal(s) should likely be changed at that mileage.
 
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Yes, we got the camshaft seals changed at 148k. Gonna do the crank seal this time as Toyota recommended it at 120k.
 
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A fellow at a parts store who knows me brought out a tensioner (I'll skip the job's details) with the words, "this too".
 
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Originally Posted by UncleDave
I do the tensioner, rollers, and water pump when I do a toyota V6
Yep, that is what we are doing as well.
 
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I also replace the tensioner when replacing the timing belt. Water pump, too, if it's driven by the timing belt. I don't necessarily replace idler bearings (or the whole assembly) until every other time. Kinda depends on the situation.
 
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