Replacing your Timing Belt (Cam Belt) at Andersons Garage, Saltash

A timing belt, or as it is sometimes known, cam belt is a vital part of an internal combustion engine that controls the timing of the engine’s valves. If your timing belt breaks the potential damage to the engine – and your bank balance – is considerable. A broken timing belt will effectively write off your engine and, as you would imagine, the cost of a rebuild is huge.

Avoiding an expensive repair

When a timing belt breaks, the camshaft stops turning leaving some of the valves in the open position. The crankshaft continues to rotate by inertia and this may cause the pistons to strike the valves that are left open. The net result is likely to be broken or bent valves, damaged pistons, and possibly, a destroyed cylinder head. All in all, letting your timing belt get to a condition where it could fail is likely to be a very expensive repair.

When to change

The timing belt on your vehicle must be replaced at an interval usually specified by the manufacturer. Depending on the vehicle’s make and model, this interval can vary from 40,000 miles to more than 120,000 miles or 5 years, whichever is the sooner. However, the timing belt must be replaced prior to the manufacturer’s recommended interval if it shows any damage like cuts, cracks or excessive wear. Remember, if not replaced in time, the timing belt may break possibly causing serious engine damage.

Killing two birds with one stone

When the timing belt is replaced it’s sensible to consider the replacement of other parts, such as the water pump, as the additional cost to replace the water pump is negligible compared to the overall cost of accessing the timing belt. We also recommend the use of a timing belt kit. Not only does this replace the timing belt, but also other parts which wear and can cause damage to a new belt such as the timing belt tensioner and the idler.

Don’t leave it too late – contact us to make sure you get your timing belt checked and changed if necessary.

To get a free estimate and to learn when your timing belt needs replacing, call us on 01752 842231