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hey, i'm replacing a timing belt on a 96 A4 with the 2.8 v6. it has the mechanical type timing belt tensioner. i was wondering how to tension the belt. is there a procedure to put a certain amount of torque on it to tension it properly? everything i can find deals with the hydraulic type.
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You just take it off. No real way to relieve tension. Once off, put into vice and slowly compress it until you can put a small nail into the two holes that will line up. That will keep it compressed. replace belt and re-install tensioner. When you're sure that you have everything lined up, pull nail and it will release and put tension on belt. Make sure that the slack in the belt is between the left cam gear and the crank gear (rest of the belt needs to be free from slack). One notch off will cause damage!
 
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