Timing Belt Replacement
Your timing belt
Let’s talk to Yakima drivers about timing belts. They’re something that many Yakima drivers don’t know much about and yet your vehicle won’t run if it’s broken – and it could cause many thousands of dollars damage if it does break. A broken timing belt is usually a tale of woe. Even though timing belt replacement is scheduled in the owner’s manual, it’s not the kind of thing that most Yakima motorists remember because it’s not well understood.
Timing belt function
Let’s review what a timing belt does. As most Yakima motorists know, the engine’s power is generated in the cylinders. A piston rides up and down in the cylinder. During the first down stroke, an intake valve at the top of the cylinder opens and air and fuel is drawn into the cylinder. Then the piston returns to the top, compressing the fuel and air mix. At the top, the spark plug fires, igniting the fuel pushing the piston down in the power stroke. As the piston once again returns up in the final stroke of the cycle, an exhaust valve opens at the top of the cylinder and the exhaust is pushed out. The timing belt is what coordinates the opening and closing of the intake and exhaust valves. It’s called a timing belt because the valves have to open and close at just the right time.
Now, not all Moxee and Parker vehicles have timing belts. Some have timing chains. Like the name implies, they use a chain rather than a belt to perform the function. It used to be that most engines used timing chains, which are extremely durable. The leading auto makers started using belts rather than chains to save money in the manufacturing process. So now Yakima motorists and AutoMetrics service advisors are left with a component that can break. They sort of shifted the problem to us.
Interference and non-interference engines
There are two broad categories of vehicle manufacturer engine design: interference and non-interference. If the timing belt on a non-interference engine breaks, the engine simply stops running. That could be very dangerous for drivers depending on where they are at the time, but it causes no internal engine damage.
Interference truck engines, on the other hand, will get really messed up when the timing belt breaks, because the valves will actually fall down into the path of the pistons. Things get chewed up when that happens and it’ll cost a chunk of cash to repair the car or truck engine.
Warning signs of problems
So, what are the warning signs? Unfortunately, there really aren’t any. There aren’t tell-tale sounds. In some vehicles, a technician from AutoMetrics may be able to see part of the belt for a visual inspection, but many have a cover that’s in the way. The reality is that if the belt slips even one notch, it might as well be broken for all the expensive damage it’ll cause. There’s no middle ground.
When to change the belt
So how can we avoid these problems? Simply replace the timing belt when your owner’s manual calls for it. It can be 60,000 miles; it might be 90,000 or 100,000 miles. The point is, if you have 60,000 or more miles, ask your AutoMetrics service advisor right away if your car maker requires a timing belt replacement.
Sometimes Yakima car owners can go quite a while without a failure, but we’ve seen them happen within a couple of oil changes of being due. It’s not worth the risk.
What does it cost to replace a timing belt in Yakima or Selah?
Well, that really depends on what kind of car you have. I can tell you that it’s usually not very easy to get to the timing belt – you often have to remove some accessories to get at it. It isn’t a cheap procedure, but it’s a fraction of what it could cost to repair the pricey damage caused by a failure.
At AutoMetrics in Yakima we’re all about trying to prevent costly repairs, keeping you and your passengers safe and increasing your driving enjoyment.
Yakima Audi owners need not worry about getting proper diagnostics performed on their vehicles. AutoMetrics has ASE and Bosch certified master technicians on staff and is equipped with factory or better Audi diagnostic tools so our technicians have the best tools to work with. Our ability to accurately diagnose the issue will save you time and money. This is what allows us to make the right repair and get you back on the road faster than any other Yakima auto repair shop.
– A proper diagnosis leads to a proper repair –
This is just a short list of some of the systems we repair on Audi vehicles: Brakes, engines, anti-lock brakes (ABS), traction and stability control systems, fuel injection, electrical systems, transmissions, clutches, power windows and door locks, heating systems, air conditioning, axles, starters, ignitions, radiators, reprogramming, water pumps, timing belts, ball joints, control arms, wheel bearings, alternators, pre buy inspections, catalytic converters, airbags, belts and hoses, fuel pumps, washer pumps, sun roofs, head lights, tail lights, transfer cases, batteries, and body control systems.
We are the Yakima experts on Audi maintenance and service. From changing oil and all other vital fluids to performing valve adjustments, 30k service, 60k service, 90k service, tune ups, timing belts, timing chains, spark plugs, filters, headlight restoration, cooling system flushes, fuel injection cleaning, power steering flushes, transmission flushes, headlight alignments, thermostats, belts, hoses, antifungal and deodorization services for air conditioning systems, etc. AutoMetrics has all the expertise and factory repair information to ensure your car is reliable and stays dependable for years to come.