The timing belt tends to be forgotten or overlooked when it comes to auto maintenance. This rubber is the part of your vehicle’s engine that synchronizes the crankshafts and camshaft rotation. At some point during your vehicle's life, you will have to change the timing belt. Most cars require a timing belt replacement every 75,000-100,000 miles.
What About Timing Chains?
Some cars have timing chains instead of timing belts. It serves the same purpose, but the component is made of steel instead. Timing chains can still stretch or break, but they wear longer than timing belts.
Your engine parts, including the timing belt, must work in perfect synchrony to ensure seamless engine operation. If the timing belt breaks on you, it certainly will damage the internal parts of the engine. That is why it is essential for you to know how to spot early signs of timing belt failure. It can save you tons of money on unnecessary engine repairs. Here are some of the tell-tale that your timing belt needs to be changed:
1. Engine Misfires
Since the timing belt keeps the cylinders of your engine in sync, you may notice differences in how well your engine runs when the belt has worn off. Some people may notice more engine misfires. Overall, engine performance will not be the same as it used to be. Eventually, you may not be able to start the engine at all.
2. Unusual Noises
You might catch some strange noises coming from under the hood when your timing belt is on its way out. A rattling noise tends to mean that your timing belt is coming loose. Other times, you may hear a ticking noise. This sound usually indicates that the pulley in the crankshaft is not being able to turn.
3. Exhaust Smoke
Excess exhaust fumes is a sign that your engine is overworking itself and overall not burning the air and fuel mixture as it should. This could mean that your timing belt is worn.
4. Oil Leak Near the Front of the Engine
As the timing belt wears out, it will loosen up its nuts and bolts. This can cause motor oil to seep out of the timing belt cover. Please reach out to our professional team as soon as you catch a vehicle leak.
Please do not wait until your timing belt breaks to replace it. Otherwise, you’d have to pay for extensive engine repairs and other expenses related to a breakdown. To prevent this misfortune from happening to you, keep tabs on your mileage and your timing belt’s condition.
At Jeff’s Automotive, we can inspect your timing belt at every service. Please get in touch with our professional team whenever you require a timing belt replacement.