A timing belt works like a bike chain, and its work is to keep the moving parts in the engine in sync. The belt also powers the injection pump, oil, and water pumps. It is made of a rubber belt with hard teeth that rotate gears when the engine is running. Note that it wears over time and may break. If it gets damaged, the engine components will be out of sync, and the vehicle might stop.
When Should You Replace the Timing Belt?
You should replace the timing belt at the intervals indicated by the manufacturer. This may vary from one car model to another. However, the recommended distance is usually between 60,000 and 10,000 miles.
Additionally, you may replace the timing belt if you experience the following signs:
- Rough idling: This comes about when the belt loses grip due to missing teeth or the wearing of the entire device. It causes gears to slip out as they rotate. If broken teeth fall on the engine, it may form a jolt.
- Misfiring engine: When gears slip, the cylinders open and shut out of sync. This action causes the engine to fire in an uncoordinated fashion and may affect the vehicle's performance.
- Smoking engine: When it is cold outside, you may not tell if smoke is coming from the engine or just some harmless vapor. However, if you see high amounts of mist or smoke from the tailpipe, you may have a timing belt problem.
- A decline in oil pressure: If the timing belt skips, it can break the camshaft and cause some pieces to be lodged onto the oil pan. This leads to an oil pressure drop and an engine failure.
If the timing belt is cut off or broken, the crankshaft will turn on its own. This movement causes pistons to come into contact with the valves as they open and close. The pistons may be damaged, or valves bent. Replace the timing belt as soon as you find these signs to prevent further damage to the engine.
If you need timing belt replacement, we invite you to bring your vehicle to our auto repair shop today!