How Do You Adjust Engine Timings?


Quick Answer

To adjust an engine timing, warm the engine, loosen and turn the distributor to restore the harmonic balancer to its normal level, and retighten the distributor. Refer to the manufacturer's information before adjusting the engine timing of your vehicle.

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How Do You Adjust Engine Timings?
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Full Answer

Start by carefully reading the owner's manual to get enough information regarding the parts of your vehicle. Once you have the necessary information, ignite the car, warm the engine until the temperature gauge reaches the halfway mark, then turn off the engine once it's sufficiently warm. Determine the number of cylinders on the car by referring to the owner's manual. Once you have determined the number of cylinders, check how far the harmonic balancer is from the top dead-center, or TDC, and rotate the distributor as needed to normalize the balancer.

To rotate the distributor, start by unscrewing its bolt with a socket wrench in order to loosen it. Once the distributor is loose, hook up the timing light to the first cylinder, turn on the strode, direct it at the harmonic balancer, and locate the mark that shows 10 degrees before top dead center. Rotate the distributor so that it's aligned with this mark, and then fasten the distributor bolt with the socket wrench.

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