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I've just bought a 16v 147 with 54k miles on the clock. The cam belt was changed at 37k - an early precaution by the previous owner. However, the water pump was not changed at the time.

I'm loathe to shell out for a new cambelt at 60k but am aware that the weak point is the water pump but could run it to the usual change schedule of 76k.

Any views on what is a 'safe' time to change the pump? Am I trying my luck by running until 76k?

Cheers
 

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If you are planning on keeping the car then just for piece of mind I'd change the belt and pump straight away.
If you dont then it will always be a worry.
Its an easy belt to change and so not expensive so not worth the risk
 

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my water pump broke last week at 16k from the last change. my indi told me that a cheap pump had been fitted last time. timing belt tensioners and water pump just changed for £265 not worth the worry.
 

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bear in mind that with the 16v (assuming it's the 1.9 JTD) you can change the belt very easily. You don't need any cam locks or anything like that.

If the belt comes with markings on it already then use this guide:

Cam Belt Change Guide on Alfa Diesel Engines

else adjust slightly and do the below:

simply take to pieces, find TDC, mark (tippex) on the belt and on the camshaft, and on the belt and on the crank. then measure up the new belt to the old (they DO NOT stretch else your timing would be all over the place) and mark up the new belt using the old as a guide. Get somebody to hold the camshaft still and match up the pulley mark on the new belt to the mark on the camshaft and then guide the belt down to the crank keeping it a bit taught match up the mark on the belt to the crank mark. tension and done. (obviously drain coolant and replace the water pump after marking belt and removing, ensure you fill rad up before re-fitting and tensioning belt as if it leaks you'll only have to take it off again)

image for reference: https://www.gates-online.com/GatesEU/en/GB/ProductImages/5600XS.jpg

and an aux belt diagram just to aid re-fitting: Alfa Romeo forum: Auxiliary belt diagram

[email protected]
 

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I had the same problem - my waterpump wasnt changed the 1st time (by previous owner)

i waited until it was due again - so was finally changed at 81k / 8.5 years - was fine

BUT , dont take it im saying its ok - and also everyone gets excited on here about all the failures - you only hear the horror stories on forums , not the good news - just saying

mines a 2.4jtd 20v - so different engine but still supposedly weak pump
 

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The engine in my Vectra 1.9CDTI is the same Fiat unit. Had the belt and pump changed last year at the Vauxhall recommended 100000 miles. Paid £325 all in.
Alfa paranoia strikies again....
 

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Change interval recommended on the jtdm in the 147 is 72000 miles by Alfa and Alfa specialists.
The OP had a belt at 37k is worried about his pump failing at 54K but is going to change everything at 76k anyway. Where are these numbers making any sense if it's not paranoia. No wonder Alfas have a reputation as money pits when money is poured into them needlessly.

A final word on this because it's not my money... the more an engine is taken to pieces the less reliable it will be, especially if you start hunting around for "best prices". Hard won experience from buying cars with "huge history file". It's huge because the work was crap!!
 

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People do get carried away with the failures, its true. The main thread on waterpump failure on this site is a tale of woe - no-one posts to say 'hey my car is fantastic and never had any failures' - just the horror stories
 

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What a lot of complete nonesense:lol::lol:

Alfa specialists? All the ones I've spoken to recommend an earlier change. Jamie at AlfaWorkshop, Paul at AforAlfa, Philip and Carl at Alfashop, Ned at Autolusso, all recommend an earlier cambelt change than 72,000 miles, with the pump changed at the same time. Even the largest chain of Alfa dealers in the UK, Desira, are recommending to customers that the waterpump is changed at the same time as the belt.

You really are a very naughty person for talking such a load of old bollards:lol:
You've spoken to all those people (that fit cam belts) about belt change intervals and still say there is no paranoia :lol: (joking)
There are an awful lot of these JTD/JTDM engines out there in use in many different models and makes of car. As far as I know only the owners of Alfas have this overwhelming urge to keep changing belts. Also as j300sjl said only the people who have problems post on here when it happens. Those people are a tiny percentage of the number of owners out there.
Looking at Alfa workshop web page, I can't see where they give a change interval other than 72K is too long. They are a very well respected operation. Are they leaving it to the owner to decide on the belt service (in the OPs case 37k)? If a specialist states a hard and fast figure you can bet it is an extremely safe and conservative one. Otherwise they would be taking flak just as manufacturers do every time there is a failure.


BTW Lets keep this civilised. Just because a person's opinion differs it does not have to be ridiculed, even if smilies are added the meaning is still there.
 
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Call it paranoia if you like but a large number of either failed or close to failed on here when they were changed. I'd say that ain't paranoia, it's common sense.

I changed a belt and water pump at an early interval on my 20v and not only was impellor totally loose but bearing had massive amounts of play. I know of someone who just had they're 147 done at an earlyish interval (all motorway long journeys) and he had coolant leaking through bearing and was starting on it's way out. So there's another car not on our list that's of cars I've seen have it changed with own eyes so 2 out of 2 with pump issues at early miles. I'll grantee all the indie specialists didn't change interval based on hearsay??? No they based it on either a large number failing and coming in for top end rebuild or dodgy condition of a high number of pumps on cars in for belt changes at their premises. These specialists will know if number they see failed or close to failed is avg, low or so much above normal compared to other cars\models they need to revise interval.

No he likely didn't call all specialists to ask. Most of those specialists are on here or have staff on here and will mention it in discussions or members who had cars in were told by them what they recommend now lol

You can go for 72 or 100k if you like but based on number of pumps that seem to be worrying past service life at lower miles I would be careful recommending others to.

Anyway sensible advice on here is to change it at some point soon as no be long till it's 60k on original pump.

John
 
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Oh and Ps we are not recommending belt change at 37k we are recommending pump change at 54k or whatever it is. But belt has to come off to do it. And it's not good practise to re-fit a belt :(
 
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Ned do you just re-fit OEM or have you investigate any other quality makes???

I decided to ignore OEM for this very reason and fit an SKF pump on last change, though it will be a while till I see what it's like at next change.

John
 

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My belt was fine when it came off. The tensioner had squeezed a little oil from the bearings but nothing to worry about. I just saw no point putting an old belt and tensioner back on whilst the pump was being replaced.
The original poster wasn't concerned about the belts condition but was concerned about the pump which wasn't replaced when the belt was changed. My belt and pump had only done 16k miles since it was changed, not by me but by the previous owner. It had however been 2 years and would have had them both replaced in a years time regardless of the mileage. The original poster does not mention how long it has been since the belt was changed just what mileage it had done. He also states that it was changed whilst owned by the previous owner. My pump failed most probably because it was a cheap pump also fitted before I owned the car so I had no reason to be confident of the quality of the work or parts. So to sum up I wouldn't be overly concerned about belt unless it was 3 years or older, but I would be concerned about the condition of the pump as this is still original to the car and the original poster has not given the age of the car. I'd be willing to bet it's over 3 years old though.
 
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Nothing to do with cheap pump a lot if not largest % of failures and near failures are OEM pumps... As ned just said an 09 159 with 20k on it had a leak through bearing :(

Refitting a belt is always a no unless only just fitted as factory tension indicator is correct for brand new non stretched belt.

;)
 
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