Long Term Maintenance on 5.7 - Timing Chain? - JeepForum.com
 
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post #1 of 12 Old 03-06-2019, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
jldzj59
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Long Term Maintenance on 5.7 - Timing Chain?

I have 125,000 miles on my '07 5.7. It is my part time daily driver and I put the drive line through the paces on a regular basis whether accelerating from 55 to 90 mph on my 70 miles of I-95 commute or drag racing between red lights like I did today in town against some dude in a red badge audi(or who ever wants to go). Over the last couple years I have been making extensive road trips from Florida to as far away as Idaho and Maine. I will continue to value reliability. I perform regular maintenance and preventative maintenance on the major areas where it makes sense.

I have a major maintenance stop coming up soon - the oil pan is leaking, one exhaust manifold bolt snapped that i know of and i broke another front differential bushing. While I have the front diff out and since I have to deal with at least one exhaust manifold I am going put on the headers to go with the cat back exhaust i have on now.

While I have the front end largely disassembled, I think it makes sense to just go all the way in and replace the timing chain and tensioners and the oil pump. I recently replaced the water pump and pulleys and belt tensioner so that should be good.

Thoughts on replacing the timing chain and tensioner? Other forums suggested using a 6.1 tensioner and chain.


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post #2 of 12 Old 03-07-2019, 05:10 AM
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Forget it. Absolutely no reason to be swapping those parts at that mileage. Maybe when you get to 200 or 250k.

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post #3 of 12 Old 03-07-2019, 10:32 AM
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I do recall a thread on issues with Hemi timing chains but I can't recall if it was the 1st run (05-08) or the later ones with VVT. I did not see it on here but on a Challenger board, I'm thinking it was the later series. If there were a lot of failures we'd be hearing it here as these are getting up in mileage but if you start hearing noise from that area I would not ignore it.

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post #4 of 12 Old 03-07-2019, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for input. I did find the discussion on some of the other boards related to 2009 thru 2012 and there was a recall which had me concerned. The discussions pointed that several guys had cammed motors and changes to valve springs and tended to rev the motors higher which they thought might of contributed. I will not worry about it until the next time I have to replace the water pump (40k miles?).

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post #5 of 12 Old 03-07-2019, 01:15 PM
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Me thinks you should settle down a little on the preventative maintenance. 40k for a water pump? I've seen them fail below 100k, but I've also seen them go much much longer. Besides, they rarely fail in spectacular fashion so you'll have time to notice a drip/noise and repair it then. Hell, our 2011 Explorer has 275k on it and the engine has never been touched in any way.

Also, I don't think the issues with the VVT Hemi's were directly chain related, but rather more cam phaser related. I could be wrong.

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post #6 of 12 Old 03-07-2019, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LouC View Post
I do recall a thread on issues with Hemi timing chains but I can't recall if it was the 1st run (05-08) or the later ones with VVT. I did not see it on here but on a Challenger board, I'm thinking it was the later series. If there were a lot of failures we'd be hearing it here as these are getting up in mileage but if you start hearing noise from that area I would not ignore it.
Any and all of the early Hemi timing chain issues I've read about and seen pictures of occurred with heavily modded and/or forced induction engines. If one goes, it really does tear things up too. On a stocker/relatively stock Hemi you should not have any problems for probably close to or over 200K, or even substantially more. When I changed the cams in both my 5.7's (I am also not easy on either one), the WK had about 90K on it and the chain still looked like new, so I reused it. I did install a new (about $30 each) 6.1 chain tensioner on both though. The 6.1 tensioner has a couple more leaf springs in it (5 vs. 3, IIRC) and the tensioner, where it rubs on the chain, is made of a different material than the 5.7 ones. The only time I would mess with it is if I was in there for something else.....like a better cam. Right now I am taking my sweet time tearing down the LX SRT8 I bought from my Grandson. I should have the heads off in the next day or two and I suspect bad lifters (165K on the vehicle) and probably a bad cam. If this is the case, it's performance cam and better head install time. When I get it torn down I'll post my findings.

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Originally Posted by caulk04 View Post
Me thinks you should settle down a little on the preventative maintenance.

Also, I don't think the issues with the VVT Hemi's were directly chain related, but rather more cam phaser related. I could be wrong.
You're right, caulk04, all the VVT problems I've heard of were with the phasers. Also, the VVT timing chains look really weak and I would probably be concerned about those long before I'd be concerned with the early Hemi ones. IIRC, there was a guy on here that just went through the VVT phaser problem. Kind of a neat setup (except for the chain), but I like mine with a fixed number of advance degrees (6 on the WK, 10 on the LX).....nothing to go wrong.

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post #7 of 12 Old 03-07-2019, 08:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks again...for clarity on the 40k miles on water pump...my original pump went out at 85k which is when i replaced all the cooling items when i was in there since i have not had much luck on cooling systems living in south Florida. I am at 125k now so i figured i have another 40k miles or so before i have to start thinking about it again.

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post #8 of 12 Old 10-23-2019, 09:42 AM
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Quote:
You're right, caulk04, all the VVT problems I've heard of were with the phasers. Also, the VVT timing chains look really weak and I would probably be concerned about those long before I'd be concerned with the early Hemi ones. IIRC, there was a guy on here that just went through the VVT phaser problem. Kind of a neat setup (except for the chain), but I like mine with a fixed number of advance degrees (6 on the WK, 10 on the LX).....nothing to go wrong.
Any idea who that guy was with the phaser problem? I think I'm going thru the same thing on mine right now and would like to pick his brain on the subject. Thanks.
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post #9 of 12 Old 10-23-2019, 11:14 AM
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So I've had some experience with 2 different timing chain issues, but neither on a Jeep so this may or may not be helpful. The first one was a chevrolet blazer I owned with the 4.3 vortec. I believe on that motor my tensioners were toast. With the hood popped and the vehicle running you could hear some noise like someone was unwinding a log chain or something - just that metal on metal sound. When going through a fast food drive-thru it was very noticeable. The engine had about 220K on it, I wasn't going to fix it, and I wound up trading it off. The vehicle I traded it for, was a nissan pathfinder, and unknown to me at the time was the 4.0L engines in the pathfinders would have timing chain tensioner issues very early on in life. Instead of a jingling noise, guessing because the engine was much, much more compact and tightly wound, instead of a jingling noise it made more of a "zeeee" sound that increased frequency directly with RPM. Due to the fact that the pathfinder needed about $4000 of other work I didn't want to do, I traded that off as well. Thankfully I wound up with my WK on that trade. At any rate, it seems like timing chains and tensioners in my experience make some pretty horrific noise when they need attention. Unlike belts which are silent killers.
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post #10 of 12 Old 10-23-2019, 04:56 PM
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Originally Posted by 90grandoneer View Post
Right now I am taking my sweet time tearing down the LX SRT8 I bought from my Grandson. I should have the heads off in the next day or two and I suspect bad lifters (165K on the vehicle) and probably a bad cam. If this is the case, it's performance cam and better head install time. When I get it torn down I'll post my findings.
It's been a while on this thread, but I said I'd report on the 6.1 findings. The main problem was one roller lifter had gone flat (stopped rolling) and 10 of the 16 roller lifters were in various stages of impending failure. The cam was also pitted and scored. A new performance cam, all new roller lifters (OEM), oil system flush, valve job with all new valve springs, new water pump, hoses, MAP Sensor, Cam Sensor, PCV Valve, Timing Chain Tensioner, (chain was still good at 165K), etc. and she's been running like a top for almost 6000 miles now. Performs great and have added a bigger throttle body, a tune on both the engine and transmission. Modded the shift schedules and torque management settings with my HP Tuner too. This thing is such a hoot to drive, I can't bring myself to sell it so now I have 3 Hemi's....two LX's and the WK.


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Any idea who that guy was with the phaser problem? I think I'm going thru the same thing on mine right now and would like to pick his brain on the subject. Thanks.
I think this is the thread I was referring to. It's a little lengthy, but covers quite a bit. Hope this helps.
https://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f67/...hould-4335449/

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post #11 of 12 Old 10-27-2019, 07:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Arneb04 View Post
So I've had some experience with 2 different timing chain issues, but neither on a Jeep so this may or may not be helpful. The first one was a chevrolet blazer I owned with the 4.3 vortec. I believe on that motor my tensioners were toast. With the hood popped and the vehicle running you could hear some noise like someone was unwinding a log chain or something - just that metal on metal sound. When going through a fast food drive-thru it was very noticeable. The engine had about 220K on it, I wasn't going to fix it, and I wound up trading it off. The vehicle I traded it for, was a nissan pathfinder, and unknown to me at the time was the 4.0L engines in the pathfinders would have timing chain tensioner issues very early on in life. Instead of a jingling noise, guessing because the engine was much, much more compact and tightly wound, instead of a jingling noise it made more of a "zeeee" sound that increased frequency directly with RPM. Due to the fact that the pathfinder needed about $4000 of other work I didn't want to do, I traded that off as well. Thankfully I wound up with my WK on that trade. At any rate, it seems like timing chains and tensioners in my experience make some pretty horrific noise when they need attention. Unlike belts which are silent killers.
The 4.3 Vortec in the Blazer did not use a timing chain tensioner, there was a gear driven balance shaft to cancel out the vibrations caused by the 90* angle of the cyls in a V6 design (these engines were basically a 5.7 V8 with 2 cyls removed). What can happen is the bearings for the balance shaft can wear and cause noises like that but its not a common problem. Not only were these used in Blazers and other GM trucks but they were very commonly used in smaller boats in a marinized sterndrive application. I have one of the pre vortec (no balance shaft) variety in our old boat and its still running on the original cam, lifters and timing gears/chain. I did a top end overhaul 2 years ago (had to replace bad head gaskets due to a past overheat) and wound up replacing the cyl heads due to cracks. The chain/gears were still quiet and the roller cam and lifters looked like new, at that point it was 29 years old.
The vibration issue on boats is not really a big deal as they use large flexible engine mounts and with the fiberglass composite structure of boats you don't really feel it. These engines were just as durable as the others in the Chevrolet small block series and are very easy and simple to take apart and repair. The engines in the Pathfinder and similar Four Runner are a whole different world. I know if the head gaskets blow in a 4.0 Four Runner it is approx. 22 hrs labor (book time) to replace.

That said its always good idea to have a mechanic's stethoscope in your garage to check out odd noises before they cause problems.

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post #12 of 12 Old 10-28-2019, 12:37 PM
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Did not know the 4.3 didn’t have tensioners. The noise was definitely chain related but none of that was why I got rid of the vehicle anyway. It was just worn out with lots of parts needed. I’m just positive there was chain related terrorism going on because it was very audible. Same with pathfinder. There are YouTube videos that catalog the noise for the 4.0 liters.
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