Your Steps to install the Crank Sensor
I finally did the Crank Position Sensor on my 2004 Optima w/ 2.4L.
Some information I came across may be helpful with this particular engine set up.
This engine and its components are virtually unchanged from 2001 to 2005. So this means that most all engine management parts like the Crank Sensor are going to be the same for all 5 years.
If you look up the parts at your local automotive parts store and you have a 2004-2005 that the parts don’t come up on, simply go back to a 2002-2003. This will save you money as you won’t have to go to a dealer and pay their prices.
While the whole process really isn’t that bad, the Dual Overhead Cams were a real pain to keep lined up. So keep that in mind if you are gonna tackle this job. You WILL need a second pair of hands when putting the timing belt back on.
I had about 1 hr 20 minutes into the whole process of getting down to the crank sensor. Now remember, I’ve never worked on this car before and there really is a lot to move/remove to get to the whole timing belt and all of it’s components. Your time SHOULD be about 1 hour with these instructions and NO problems with getting bolts and nuts loose.
Add about another hour or so to get it all back together and you should be on the road in a total of about 3 hrs!
1) Obviously = Disconnect the battery. ALSO, after removing the battery from the car, take a pair of jumper cables and connect them to the battery cables in the car and ground the car to a metal rod (a butter knife works too) into the ground. This will remove any residual electrical current in the car. Remember, the Crank Sensor is an electrical part!
2) Loosen the lug nuts on the passenger front wheel. 21MM Socket required for stock lug nuts. (DO NOT REMOVE THEM!)
3) Turn the wheels hard right. This will give you more clearance to the crankshaft.
4) Jack up the passenger front wheel so that you have about 4”-6” of clearance below the front tire. Remember, once you lower the car onto an APPROVED jack stand, there will be less clearance.
5) Remove the tire, place out of the way. Put somewhere safe so it can’t be stolen!
6) Now, place a jack under the oil pan near the exhaust pipe and lift about a ½ inch.
7) Remove the Plastic Engine cover and the bracket on the left side of the timing belt cover. All bolts use a 10MM socket. Simply loosen the bracket and slide it back out of the way.
8) Remove the Motor Mount next to the Power Steering Pump. There are 2 bolts and a nut near the Timing Belt Cover that must be removed. Then remove the bolt going to the frame. All bolts and nuts are 17MM. You will need a DEEP WELL 17MM for the Nut!
9) Loosen the Alternator/Water Pump belt. The bolt over the pulley needs to be loosened before loosening the bolt on left the side. (NOTE: Once you get a little slack on the side bolt, simply lift it up out of the holder. No need to keep cranking.) Now PUSH the alternator to the engine, this will loosen the belt and remove the belt off the Alt pulley first. There is a bottom bolt, but with a little muscle, the alt should move. A 12MM socket or wrench works fine here. Lots of room to move.
10) Loosen the Power Steering/AC/Tensioner belt by loosening the Tensioner Bolt first. It is on the back side of the tensioner. Once that is done, then loosen the bolt on the side. This one you will have to keep loosening until you can get the belt off. A short 14MM socket and ratchet for the tensioner bolt and a 14MM wrench for the side bolt.
11) Remove the power steering pump bracket. Leave the pump attached to the bracket. There are 2 bolts on the front of the timing belt covers 1 above the other. There are two bolts on the side of the engine block as well. 1 above the other. (NOTE: I ended up removing the Heat shield from the exhaust manifold to gain an extra 1 inch that allowed me to have enough lifting room to break the top mount bolt loose.) The pump housing is very close to the top bolt, so either a CROWS foot or a regular wrench is needed. The bottom bolt is easily handled by a socket and ratchet. All 4 Pump bracket bolts are 14MM and the 3 Heat shield bolts are 12MM. Use the closed end of the wrench on the top bracket bolt by the pump so as not to round the edges.
12) Remove the Water Pump Pulley. There are 4 bolts. (Now, I lifted the engine up quite a bit w/ the jack so that I was able to get to the water pump bolts easily.) A 10MM wrench is all you will be able to use. No real clearance available. There IS a notch in the center hole to help line up the pulley with all for holes.
13) Now it’s time to remove the Crank Pulley. (You DO NOT need to remove the Center Crank Bolt if you are NOT replacing the COUNTER BALANCE SHAFT BELT) Just remove the 4 outer bolts. (IF you ARE replacing the Counter Balance Shaft Belt, you WILL NEED an impact wrench and a 22MM socket. Break the bolt loose, then tighten with a ratchet, THEN remove the 4 outer bolts!) (NOTE: There is a very thin roll pin sticking up from the Timing Belt gear and it goes into the Crank Pulley for putting the Crank Pulley in the right position.) If the Crank Pulley won’t move once the 4 bolts are out, simply tap it at the upper / lower / right / left edges until it is loose enough to pull STRAIGHT off. BE CAREFUL TO NOT BREAK THIS PIN. If you do break it, just make sure you line up the hole on the Crank Pulley with where the pin is at on the timing gear. The 4 bolts are 12MM and a ratchet works just fine.
14) Time to remove the Timing Cover bolts. Before lowering the engine again, remove the 4 bolts on the top piece of the cover and take it off. Then lower the engine all the way down till the oil filter touches the frame. DO NOT REST THE FILTER ON THE FRAME! ALWAYS SUPPORT THE MOTOR! Once you lower the engine, there are about 9 or 10 bolts. A 10MM socket and ¼ inch ratchet will do the trick.
15) You should now have a clear view of the entire timing belt, pulleys AND the Counter Balance Shaft Belt. The Crank Position Sensor is to the right of the Crankshaft.
16) Now you have A LOT of little things to do BEFORE removing the timing belt and replacing the Crank Sensor.
17) First off, get a simple metal marking pen. I bought a white and a red ink marking pens from Walmart in the Scrap Book section of the Crafts & Sewing department. They are about $2.50 each. THEY WILL COME IN HANDY!
18) Using a 22MM socket and a ½ inch breaker bar, simply rotate the engine until you see ALL of the timing marks are lined up. The crankshaft has a metal plate that kind of looks like a bowtie. There is a notch on it that lines up with a little pointer molded into the block. Once this is lined up, check the OIL PUMP pulley and make sure the notch in the metal plate is lined up with a point molded into the block. NOW check the COUNTER BALANCE SHAFT pulley (it’s that second belt to the upper left of the crank pulley.) It has a circle on the upper pulley that matches a notch on the block.
19) There is 1 mark each on the CAM SHAFT PULLEYS. The pulley itself has a notch in between two teeth and they match up with a pointer on top of the Valve cover. IF THE CRANK IS LINED UP, but not the Camshafts, simply rotate the crank until the CAMSHAFTS line up, then make sure the other marks are still lined up. Once this is done, the entire engine is in ALIGNMENT. (NOTE: Once you remove the timing belt tensioner, the CAMSHAFTS WILL MOVE!) And the other marks might as well. SO BE PREPARED! Put all the lower marks back on track, beware that the oil pump pulley moves very easy, so keep an eye on it when putting the belt back on.
20) BEFORE REMOVING THE TIMING BELT TENSIONER = Take the white Metal Marking Pen and highlight each timing mark on each pulley AND the marks molded into the block or Valve Cover! Don’t forget the Camshafts! If reusing the timing belt, be sure to mark the side of the timing belt too, I put a line all the way across the timing belt at each location, this will help in reassembly. Once all your marks are made, you are ready to remove the timing belt.
21) To remove the Timing Belt tensioner, (it is located above left of the crank pulley and has two bolts holding it in) you need a 12MM socket and I recommend removing the upper bolt first. Now be prepared and keep your fingers clear of the bottom of the tensioner as it will move and may pinch up against the Crankshaft pulley. You won’t hurt the parts, but it may pinch your fingers! Remove both bolts and take out the tensioner. Once you do this, you will see the Tensioner pulley drop and this will loosen the belt. At this time, your CAMSHAFTS WILL MOVE, as well, the lower marks may move too.
22) Check the Timing Belt Tensioner to make sure it is in good working order. You should NOT be able to press down the little plunger sticking out by simply pushing it against the edge of something. If you can move it w/o a TON of force, you will need to replace it. This part is hydraulic, so heat will make it more movable.
Need Help? Let me know. I might be able to answer your question.