Replacing cam phasers is a necessary repair for many vehicles. These components control the timing of the engine’s valves, ensuring smooth operation.
However, many drivers may be curious about how long it takes to replace cam phasers and what factors can affect the duration of the repair.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the ins and outs of cam phaser replacement, including the time frame you can expect and key considerations to keep in mind.
How Long Does It Take To Replace Cam Phasers?
Replacing cam phasers typically takes 6-8 hours of labor, depending on the make and model of the vehicle. The process involves removing the valve cover and timing cover, replacing the phasers, and reinstalling the covers.
How Much Time Taken To Replace Cam Phasers in Different Types of Engines?
Here are the six most common types of engines and detail the time it takes to replace cam phasers for each one.
Inline Four-Cylinder Engine
The inline four-cylinder engine is a popular choice for compact and midsize cars. Replace cam phasers on this engine, it typically takes around 6 to 8 hours of labor.
This is because the engine is small and easy to access, making the process relatively straightforward.
The V6 engine is a common choice for midsize and larger cars. Replacing cam phasers on this engine typically takes around 8 to 10 hours of labor.
This is because the engine is larger and more complex than the inline four-cylinder engine, requiring more time to access and replace the cam phasers.
The V8 engine is a powerful choice for larger cars and trucks. To replace cam phasers on this engine, it typically takes around 10 to 12 hours of labor.
This is because the engine is even larger and more complex than the V6 engine, requiring more time to access and replace the cam phasers.
Inline Six-Cylinder Engine
The inline six-cylinder engine is a common choice for larger cars and SUVs. Replacing cam phasers on this engine typically takes around 8 to 10 hours of labor.
This is because the engine is long and requires more time to access and replace the cam phasers.
The boxer engine is a unique engine design used by Subaru. To replace cam phasers on this engine, it typically takes around 10 to 12 hours of labor.
This is because the engine is compact but complex, requiring careful attention to detail to ensure proper replacement of the cam phasers.
The diesel engine is a popular choice for heavy-duty trucks and vehicles. Replacing cam phasers on this engine typically takes around 12 to 16 hours of labor.
This is because diesel engines are typically larger and more complex than gasoline engines, requiring more time and expertise to replace the cam phasers properly.
Factors That Affect The Time It Takes To Replace Cam Phasers
Here are the factors that affect the time it takes to replace cam phasers:
Vehicle Model and Engine Type
The vehicle model and engine type play a significant role in the time it takes to replace cam phasers.
Different vehicle models and engines have unique designs, and some may have more complex systems than others.
For example, some engines may have cam phasers located in hard-to-reach areas, making the replacement process more challenging and time-consuming.
Skill Level of the Technician
The skill level of the technician performing the replacement process is also critical in determining the time it takes to replace cam phasers.
Experienced technicians are often more efficient at completing the job, which can significantly reduce the time required.
Inexperienced technicians may take longer to replace cam phasers, increasing the overall time required for the job.
Availability of Tools and Equipment
The availability of the right tools and equipment is essential to ensure the efficient and safe replacement of cam phasers.
The lack of proper tools and equipment can increase the time it takes to complete the replacement process.
For example, some engines require specific tools that may not be readily available, which can cause delays in the replacement process.
Accessibility of the Cam Phaser
The location and accessibility of the cam phaser within the engine also affect the time it takes to replace it.
If the cam phaser is located in a difficult-to-reach area, the replacement process will take longer.
In some cases, the technician may need to remove other parts to access the cam phaser, which can significantly increase the time required for the job.
Condition of the Cam Phaser
The condition of the cam phaser also plays a crucial role in the time it takes to replace it.
If the cam phaser is severely damaged, corroded, or worn, the replacement process may take longer.
In some cases, the technician may need to spend more time removing the damaged cam phaser, which can increase the overall time required for the job.
Condition of Other Engine Components
The condition of other engine components can also affect the time it takes to replace cam phasers.
If other parts need to be repaired or replaced before replacing the cam phaser, it will add to the total time required for the job.
For example, if the engine has a damaged timing chain, the technician may need to repair or replace it before replacing the cam phaser.
Use of Genuine Replacement Parts
The use of genuine replacement parts is essential to ensure the longevity and performance of the engine.
However, if the replacement parts are not readily available, it can increase the time it takes to complete the replacement process.
In some cases, the technician may need to wait for the parts to arrive, which can significantly increase the overall time required for the job.
The complexity of the Engine System
The complexity of the engine system is another factor that affects the time it takes to replace cam phasers.
The more intricate the system, the more time it will take to complete the replacement process.
For example, some engines have multiple cam phasers, which can make the replacement process more complex and time-consuming.
The Severity of the Problem
The severity of the problem also affects the time it takes to replace cam phasers. If the problem is minor, the replacement process will take less time.
However, if the problem is severe, it will require more time to complete the replacement process.
For example, if the cam phaser has been seized, it may require more time and effort to remove it, which can increase the overall time required for the job.
Lastly, weather conditions can also affect the time it takes to replace cam phasers. Extreme temperatures, rain, or snow can slow down the
Preparation Before Starting Cam Phaser Replacement
Here are some steps that you should take before starting cam phaser replacement.
Step 1: Gather the Necessary Tools
The first step in preparing for cam phaser replacement is to gather all the necessary tools.
You will need a range of tools, including a torque wrench, a socket wrench set, a ratchet, a breaker bar, pliers, and screwdrivers.
You may also need specialized tools, such as a camshaft holding tool and a timing chain tensioner tool.
Ensure that all the tools you gather are of high quality and suitable for the job.
Step 2: Read the Service Manual
It is crucial to read the service manual for your vehicle thoroughly before starting the cam phaser replacement.
The service manual will provide you with information on the correct procedure for replacing the cam phaser, the recommended torque specifications, and other important details.
It will also help you identify any potential issues that may arise during the replacement process.
Step 3: Inspect the Engine
Before starting the cam phaser replacement, it is essential to inspect the engine carefully. Check for any signs of wear and tear or damage, such as cracks or leaks.
Inspect the timing chain, tensioner, and guides to ensure they are in good condition.
If you notice any issues, you should address them before starting the replacement process.
Step 4: Remove the Battery and Disconnect the Electrical System
It is crucial to remove the battery and disconnect the electrical system before starting the cam phaser replacement.
This will help prevent any electrical damage to the vehicle during the replacement process.
Ensure that you disconnect all the electrical connections and label them to make it easier to reconnect them later.
Step 5: Drain the Engine Oil
Before starting cam phaser replacement, it is essential to drain the engine oil. This will help prevent any oil spills during the replacement process.
Ensure that you dispose of the old oil correctly and replace it with new oil after completing the replacement process.
Step-By-Step Guide To Replacing Cam Phasers
Here is a step-by-step guide to help you replace cam phasers in your vehicle:
Step 1: Gather the Necessary Tools and Materials
Before you start working on replacing the cam phasers, you will need to gather some tools and materials.
You will need a socket set, wrenches, pliers, a torque wrench, a timing chain tool kit, a cam phaser tool, a gasket scraper, and new cam phasers.
Make sure you have all the tools and materials needed for the job before you start.
Step 2: Remove the Timing Cover and Timing Chain
To access the cam phasers, you will need to remove the timing cover and timing chain. First, disconnect the battery and drain the coolant.
Then, remove the fan and serpentine belt, and disconnect the radiator hoses and electrical connectors.
Next, remove the timing cover bolts and pry the cover off.
Remove the tensioner, chain guide, and timing chain. Be careful not to damage the chain or any of the components.
Step 3: Remove the Cam Phasers
Once you have removed the timing chain, you can access the cam phasers.
Remove the bolts that hold the cam phasers in place and use the cam phaser tool to remove them. Be careful not to damage the camshaft or the engine.
Step 4: Clean the Surfaces and Install New Cam Phasers
Use the gasket scraper to clean the surfaces where the cam phasers were installed.
Install the new cam phasers and torque the bolts to the manufacturer’s specifications.
Make sure the cam phasers are properly aligned and the timing marks are lined up correctly.
Step 5: Reinstall the Timing Chain and Timing Cover
Now that you have installed the new cam phasers, it’s time to reinstall the timing chain and timing cover.
Use the timing chain tool kit to install the chain and tensioner, and make sure the chain is properly aligned.
Reinstall the timing cover and torque the bolts to the manufacturer’s specifications.
Step 6: Reconnect the Hoses and Electrical Connectors
Finally, reconnect the radiator hoses and electrical connectors. Refill the coolant and reconnect the battery.
Start the engine and check for any leaks or abnormal noises. If everything looks and sounds good, you have successfully replaced the cam phasers in your vehicle!
What Are Cam Phasers, And Why Do They Need To Be Replaced?
Cam phasers are a component in the engine that adjusts the timing of the camshaft.
Over time, they can wear out, which can cause engine problems like poor performance, engine knock, and other issues.
How Can I Tell If My Cam Phasers Need To Be Replaced?
Some signs that your cam phasers might need to be replaced include engine misfires, a loud ticking noise coming from the engine, and a lack of power or acceleration.
If you notice any of these symptoms, it’s a good idea to have your vehicle inspected by a mechanic.
Can I Replace The Cam Phasers Myself?
Replacing cam phasers can be a complex job, and it’s not recommended for inexperienced DIY mechanics.
It’s best to have a professional mechanic perform the replacement to ensure it’s done correctly.
How Much Does It Cost To Replace Cam Phasers?
The cost of replacing cam phasers varies depending on the make and model of the vehicle, the severity of the problem, and the location of the repair shop.
On average, you can expect to pay between $800 and $1500 for parts and labor.
Can I Drive My Car With Bad Cam Phasers?
It’s not recommended to drive your vehicle with bad cam phasers.
Continuing to drive with faulty cam phasers can cause serious engine damage and potentially lead to engine failure.
What’s The Difference Between A Cam Phaser And A Camshaft?
A camshaft is a rotating shaft within the engine that operates the valves, while a cam phaser is a component that adjusts the timing of the camshaft.
How Long Do Cam Phasers Typically Last?
The lifespan of cam phasers varies depending on the make and model of the vehicle, driving conditions, and other factors.
On average, they can last between 100,000 and 150,000 miles before needing to be replaced.
Replacing cam phasers can take anywhere from 4-10 hours, depending on the make and model of your vehicle.
It’s important to have a qualified mechanic handle the replacement to ensure that it’s done correctly and your engine runs smoothly.
If you notice symptoms of cam phaser failure, such as rough idling or a ticking noise from the engine, don’t hesitate to get it checked out by a professional.
By addressing the issue promptly, you can avoid further damage and keep your vehicle running smoothly for miles to come.