How to Remove a Chevy Camshaftby Don Bowman
When removing a Chevy camshaft for replacement, new valve lifters should always be included. Used lifters have a wear pattern that seriously reduces the life span of a new camshaft. Removing the camshaft requires removing the timing chain. It is always wise to replace the camshaft sprocket and timing chain as well if they are original to the vehicle.
Place the drain pan under the radiator drain plug and drain the radiator. Remove the upper and lower radiator hoses using a screwdriver to loosen the clamps. Loosen the clamps on the heater hoses at the engine and remove the hoses.
Loosen the alternator bolts with a socket. Swing the alternator in and remove the belt. Loosen the bolts on the power steering pump and remove the belt. Loosen the tensioner for the air conditioning compressor using a socket. Remove the belt.
Remove the radiator fan shroud using a socket. Remove the four bolts in the fan using a wrench. Remove the fan. Remove the radiator top support bracket using a socket and remove the bracket. Remove the transmission cooler lines from the side of the radiator using a wrench. Lift the radiator out of the car.
Mark and remove all the spark plug wires. Disconnect the electrical plug to the distributor or to the ignition control module in a vehicle that is distributorless. Loosen and remove the air cleaner. Remove all the ignition coils on late model cars that use coil-on-plug ignition. A 10 mm socket is needed to remove the two bolts in each coil that secure it to the valve cover.
Pull the PCV hose off the valve cover. Remove all the bolts in the valve covers using a socket. Lift the covers off. Loosen the distributor hold-down bolt with a wrench and lift the distributor out of the intake manifold.
Loosen the fuel line using a screwdriver. Pull the hose off the carburetor. If it is a fuel-injected engine, the fuel pressure must be released first. Take the cap off the fuel rail Schrader valve. Use the screwdriver to depress the valve core to release the pressure. Disconnect the inlet and return fuel lines from the fuel rail. Remove the throttle linkage from the carburetor or throttle body.
Remove all the bolts in the intake manifold using a socket and lift the manifold off the engine. Loosen all the rocker arm adjusting nuts using a 5/8-inch wrench. Move the rocker arms aside and lift the push rods out of the head.
Remove all the valve lifters using a scribe or a valve lifter removal tool. Lift them straight up out of their bores. The best way is to hook them by the top spring and lift them out.
Remove the four bolts in the water pump and pull the pump away from the block. Remove the bolts in the crankshaft pulley using a socket. Pull the pulley off the crankshaft. Remove the single bolt in the center of the harmonic balancer using a socket and remove the balancer.
Loosen and remove the four bolts that are vertically threaded into the bottom of the timing chain cover using a socket. Remove the rest of the bolts around the timing chain cover with the same socket. Use the screwdriver to pry the timing chain cover off.
Straighten out the bolt lock ring behind the bolts on the camshaft sprocket. Use a screwdriver to bend the tabs back so the bolts can be turned. Remove the three bolts in the camshaft sprocket using a socket. Pull the sprocket off the camshaft and remove the timing chain. Install the camshaft sprocket and install the camshaft sprocket bolts loosely. Grab the camshaft sprocket and carefully pull the camshaft out of the engine.
Things You'll Need
- Drain pan
- Set of sockets
- Set of wrenches
- Common screwdriver
- Scribe or valve lifter removal tool
Don Bowman has been writing for various websites and several online magazines since 2008. He has owned an auto service facility since 1982 and has over 45 years of technical experience as a master ASE tech. Bowman has a business degree from Pennsylvania State University and was an officer in the U.S. Army (aircraft maintenance officer, pilot, six Air Medal awards, two tours Vietnam).