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97-01 ES300 Timing belt change write up?

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Old 02-25-11, 04:06 AM   #1
Aceshigh
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Default 97-01 ES300 Timing belt change write up?

I'm assuming all '97-'01 ES300's were the same.
I'm looking for a write up somewhere with pics that gives details on how to
change the timing belt and water pump and related seals on my 2 ES300's.

My mothers older and on a limited income so I'm going to do it for her.
Someone posted this kit in a thread I searched and found.
IS this a good kit with reliable Toyota quality parts ??

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...tchlink:top:en
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Old 02-25-11, 06:43 PM   #2
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I agree. But the TB is about $300 at lexus. You do NOT need to replace the WP at this time. Also they can test the tensioner(free)...Also the cam and crank seals can be done with the TB for like $120 more.

Plus the parts are NOT OEM (aka toyo/lexus). For me, I would buy OEM parts from a dealer and do it...For me, the cam/crank seals are the most important.
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Old 02-25-11, 07:25 PM   #3
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If you are going to replace the timing belt, and it blocks access to the water pump, PLEASE replace the water pump as well. The second you try to cheap out and not replace the pump is the second that it starts leaking 10 miles after you reinstalled the timing belt.

I would also never reuse a tensioner that has more than 10k miles on it - why risk it?

I would try and source OEM Lexus parts but, chances are the kits as you posted are pretty well designed as well, and can be had for quite a bargain. Not completely sold on replacing cam and crank seals. Those things hardly ever leak on the Toyota motors. Many DIYers end up trying to replace them and only causing leaks instead of preventing. If you pull it all apart and you can see where they are weeping or dripping oil, replace them, but, IMO, if they are dry, leave em...
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Old 02-25-11, 08:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitsuguy View Post
If you are going to replace the timing belt, and it blocks access to the water pump, PLEASE replace the water pump as well. The second you try to cheap out and not replace the pump is the second that it starts leaking 10 miles after you reinstalled the timing belt.

I would also never reuse a tensioner that has more than 10k miles on it - why risk it?

I would try and source OEM Lexus parts but, chances are the kits as you posted are pretty well designed as well, and can be had for quite a bargain. Not completely sold on replacing cam and crank seals. Those things hardly ever leak on the Toyota motors. Many DIYers end up trying to replace them and only causing leaks instead of preventing. If you pull it all apart and you can see where they are weeping or dripping oil, replace them, but, IMO, if they are dry, leave em...
Funny, I have had several Lexus dealers say the WP is not needed every TB change. Every other. Also the tensioner is checked so why replace it (free $$$)? Heck, I am one over 200,000 miles on one...

BUT, in high mileage es3000 the cam/crank seals ALWAYS go...This is common info. Do a search on here or LOC...This is common, like the radio display, sway bar bushings, need I go on?

Example my 98 was replaced at 80K mile and went out (leaked) at 155K miles..
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Old 02-26-11, 03:14 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snowmaker View Post
Funny, I have had several Lexus dealers say the WP is not needed every TB change. Every other. Also the tensioner is checked so why replace it (free $$$)? Heck, I am one over 200,000 miles on one...

BUT, in high mileage es3000 the cam/crank seals ALWAYS go...This is common info. Do a search on here or LOC...This is common, like the radio display, sway bar bushings, need I go on?

Example my 98 was replaced at 80K mile and went out (leaked) at 155K miles..
The funny thing about cam/crank seals is that if they are cared for, the OEM ones may never leak. For instance, your original ones that weren't leaking at 80k miles may have never leaked, period... Its one of those weird things...

The tensioner is checked at that moment in time... Just like the water pump, as soon as you don't replace one, it will fail... The same can sometimes be said for the cam/crank seals, but, again, in my experience (as a service manager for a major repair shop), most of the time if they aren't leaking you are better off leaving them alone... Most of the time being the key phrase...

As far as the water pump goes, I've seen water pumps last seemingly indefinitely, and I've seen them last 30k miles... If its behind the timing belt, my policy has always been to change them... People don't care for their cooling system nearly as much as they do their oil - its easy and cheap to change oil, $30 at any quick lube, whereas flushing the radiator to replace the anti-wear components in antifreeze is much more time consuming and costly. Maybe this one simple reason is why water pumps fail so often...?
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Old 02-26-11, 09:46 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by mitsuguy View Post
The funny thing about cam/crank seals is that if they are cared for, the OEM ones may never leak. For instance, your original ones that weren't leaking at 80k miles may have never leaked, period... Its one of those weird things...

The tensioner is checked at that moment in time... Just like the water pump, as soon as you don't replace one, it will fail... The same can sometimes be said for the cam/crank seals, but, again, in my experience (as a service manager for a major repair shop), most of the time if they aren't leaking you are better off leaving them alone... Most of the time being the key phrase...

As far as the water pump goes, I've seen water pumps last seemingly indefinitely, and I've seen them last 30k miles... If its behind the timing belt, my policy has always been to change them... People don't care for their cooling system nearly as much as they do their oil - its easy and cheap to change oil, $30 at any quick lube, whereas flushing the radiator to replace the anti-wear components in antifreeze is much more time consuming and costly. Maybe this one simple reason is why water pumps fail so often...?
I agree but cam and crank seals are VERY common for failure on >100K miles on the older ES's. Do a search on ANY lexus board and this is the top 3 failures (like dirty IVAC, throttle body, PVC failure, sway car issues and valve cover gaskets)...My ES went 80K miles then leaked again at 155K miles. Not saying you might get lucky but this is a common issue.

You can't "care" for cam and crank seals..They are what they are. Yea leave them and they leak, you are paying MORE for these $20 seals then a complete timing belt job. I would do them with a TB.

I know many people with toyo and lexus and WP are NOT a common issues (if OEM part). Heck I am on almost 200K with original rad cap on my 98. Just did thermo at 180K and it looked and tested fine. Even two large lexus dealers so they are not an issue and they do not see them fail, I agree based on my readings. They both state everyother TB change you can change them (or test).

Tensions on my old 98 is original, almost 200K and WP has 130K miles and fine.

Just saying, if you hit the "hot" issues you are fine..All the HOT issues I noted above I have had...And a TB, WP etc are not them..seals are on the older ES's

Last edited by snowmaker; 02-26-11 at 09:55 AM..
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Old 02-26-11, 12:39 PM   #7
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I always replaced TB,water pump and all 3 seals at the same time when doing the TB.
Most shop don't want to replace the water pump on the ES/RX because you have to remove both cam gears with special tool and remove the back cover because part of the water pump truck behind it.
They will tell you all the stories you want to hear,but I've see a lot of water pump leaks on the ES/RX and a lot of cam seals leak too(all of them over 120K).
It's a lot easier to slap on the TB and call it a day(less work and easy money).
I agree with Mitsuguy, if the car has regular oil change every 5K those seals will last longer. If you don't know what are you doing when removing the cam seal you may scratch the cam gear and cause the oil leak.
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Old 02-26-11, 03:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snowmaker View Post
You can't "care" for cam and crank seals..They are what they are. Yea leave them and they leak, you are paying MORE for these $20 seals then a complete timing belt job. I would do them with a TB.
Sure you can... change your oil regularly with a quality oil...

My advice was also somewhat based on this person doing the job them self. As VVT-i just mentioned, it is very easy for someone who hasn't done a whole lot of cam seals to scratch or nick one, and one tiny tiny scratch is all it takes for that seal to leak like a sieve. Or, my favorite are the ones that don't get them installed squarely, or, damage the seal on installation... I've seen too many of them screwed up, even sometimes by professional technicians, to highly recommend that to anyone...
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Old 02-26-11, 06:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitsuguy View Post
Sure you can... change your oil regularly with a quality oil...

My advice was also somewhat based on this person doing the job them self. As VVT-i just mentioned, it is very easy for someone who hasn't done a whole lot of cam seals to scratch or nick one, and one tiny tiny scratch is all it takes for that seal to leak like a sieve. Or, my favorite are the ones that don't get them installed squarely, or, damage the seal on installation... I've seen too many of them screwed up, even sometimes by professional technicians, to highly recommend that to anyone...
Okay, mine still leaked and I use Amsoil since day one with UOA to show great results. I have done UOA for over 25 years on my engines..

The change oil regularly is BS...What are you looking to get? Lower wear numbers? Higher TBN? Low TAN? Low silicone? Low NOX or OX? You can play this all day..

So again the seals are more important them a WP or TB!
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Old 02-26-11, 06:20 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by VVT-i View Post
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I agree with Mitsuguy, if the car has regular oil change every 5K those seals will last longer. If you don't know what are you doing when removing the cam seal you may scratch the cam gear and cause the oil leak.
Define longer? seals last 90K miles vs 89? Also I am saying is these are common on these higher mile ES's....Look on here, LOC, toyonation and it is common has the poor PVC, intake etc..Throw in crap starter contacts that go around 120K miles.

I do not see many WP go..I disagree on that one.
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Old 02-27-11, 02:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snowmaker View Post
Define longer? seals last 90K miles vs 89? Also I am saying is these are common on these higher mile ES's....Look on here, LOC, toyonation and it is common has the poor PVC, intake etc..Throw in crap starter contacts that go around 120K miles.

I do not see many WP go..I disagree on that one.
I don't have any proof about how many more miles the front crank seal,the cam seal or the rear main seal of the car with regular oil change with last longer than the car with lack of maintenance. The PCV system run cleaner and no oil gelling in the engine help out a lot.

As of the Water pump leak. I will not argue with you because I just stated base on my 15 years as master tech at Lexus.
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Old 02-28-11, 02:34 PM   #12
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Here are some PDF files on both timing belt and water pump removal and installation. There's also a component PDF that shows all the torque specs and locations of parts related.

Good luck I've got these down to under an hour.
Attached Images
File Type: pdf TBremoval.pdf (212.4 KB, 1006 views)
File Type: pdf TBInstall.pdf (219.8 KB, 576 views)
File Type: pdf TBComponents.pdf (124.9 KB, 518 views)
File Type: pdf ES300WP.pdf (45.5 KB, 493 views)
File Type: pdf ES300WPInstall.pdf (47.9 KB, 488 views)
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Old 03-01-11, 12:38 AM   #13
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Wow yall sure do know your stuff... quick question how much would changing just the timing belt cost? (At a lexus dealership)
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Old 03-01-11, 11:15 AM   #14
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If you need any of the links in those PDF files, let me know.
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Old 03-01-11, 01:11 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xsh0tya View Post
Wow yall sure do know your stuff... quick question how much would changing just the timing belt cost? (At a lexus dealership)
When I asked for a quote 2 years ago (timming belt, all other belts, water pump, crank seal, cam seals, thermostat, coolant, etc etc), they quoted 14-16 hours.

I did it myself over +20 hours. It was my first time on the 97 ES300 and I took my time. And using only basic hand tools.

Some of the mechanics said they can do it in 8 hrs or so but I am not sure if they are careful, using anti-seize, loctite, power tool, following torque spec, etc.
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