Today we want to talk to Appleton drivers about timing belts. They're something that many 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 Appleton area auto owners remember because it's not well understood.
Let's review what a timing belt does. As most 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 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 vehicle manufactures started using belts rather than chains to save money in the manufacturing process. So now Appleton drivers and their advisors at Tuffy Tire & Auto Service Center Appleton are left with a component that can break. They sort of shifted the problem to us. There are two broad categories of 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 vehicle engines, on the other hand, will get real 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 change to repair the vehicle engine.
So, what are the warning signs? Unfortunately, there really aren't any. There aren't tell-tale sounds. In some vehicles, a technician from Tuffy Tire & Auto Service Center Appleton 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 damage it'll cause. There's no middle ground.
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/97,000 km; it might be 90,000 or 100,000 miles/145,000 or 160,000 km. The point is, if you have 60,000 or more miles (97,000 or more km), ask your Tuffy Tire & Auto Service Center Appleton service advisor right away if your vehicle requires a timing belt replacement.
Contact Tuffy Tire & Auto Service Center Appleton to learn more about your car's timing belt
You can find us at:
Sometimes Appleton drivers 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 Appleton? 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 damage caused by a failure.
At Tuffy Tire & Auto Service Center Appleton in Appleton, we're all about trying to prevent repairs, keeping you and your passengers safe and increasing your driving enjoyment.
July 25, 2021
It's bad enough when you mistakenly leave a window open in your vehicle on a rainy day and you find your carpet soaked. But what in the world is going on when your windows are closed tight, not leaking and you STILL wind up with wet carpet? The answer could be something you might not even know y... More
July 18, 2021
Even in the months where temperatures are cooler, heat is still an enemy of your vehicle. When your engine runs, it creates heat, so there are numerous heat shields that protect other parts from those higher temperatures. Heat shields are installed around several areas of the exhaust system. Ot... More
July 11, 2021
If you're gonna drive around the Appleton area, you've got to be able to see! So having a good set of windshield wipers is extremely important. We've all experienced the frustration and fear of not being able to see clearly during a storm or when our windshield is just dirty.It seems like your w... More