Saturday, February 25, 2012

What will you need to replace timing belt?

You may not have given a look at your timing belt until you heard a cymbals slapping each other; and then, the buzzer sounds off. Anything can go wrong when it’s time for timing belt replacement. Yes, even if you haven’t reached the maximum distance yet. Take a chance to see your timing belt and check for cracks, shredding, or excessive slack.

Apart from the natural symptoms which could wear up your timing belt, other factors that will affect its early replacement are oil leaks from surrounding seals, living in a dry climate where belts are worn rapidly, and infrequent driving (causes the belt to become a set shape).

These factors will lead you to replace your timing belt. If you don’t feel going to the mechanic and is more accustomed in doing your own repair, you’ll likely need tools that will help you do this.

The basic tools include socket set, torque wrench, combination wrenches, screw drivers, drain pan, jack and jack stands, and antifreeze. In addition to these tools, you will need more tools specifically designed for timing belt replacement. These include a new timing belt, timing belt cover gasket, timing light, belt tension gauge, and pins/bolts needed to hold camshaft position while working. For some vehicle whose crankshaft pulley doesn’t just slide off, a harmonic balancer puller or three-jaw gear puller will be needed.

Remember that in timing belts, it isn’t “one size fits all.”  Tools, belt type, and procedure may vary depending on the vehicle’s model. Perhaps, the most valuable tool for replacing a timing belt is a manual from your car’s manufacturer.  

Sunday, February 19, 2012

It’s time to replace your timing belt

Some cars break down without you even knowing why. For one thing, the failure of the timing belt causes this. To prevent a serious damage on the car, one should know when to replace it. This can be done by getting familiar with the timing belt, its functions, and knowing when there is something wrong with it. Knowledge about the symptoms of timing belt will save you from the hassles of being stuck in the middle of the road as the car breaks down.

Let’s start by defining timing belt. It is a chain which is part of the car’s internal combustion engine. Its role is to connect a crankshaft to a camshaft which controls the opening and closing of the engine’s valves. A non-functioning timing belt will cause the engine’s pistons to stop functioning as well which leads to the car’s inability to run. An overused timing belt will no longer be able to perform its functions, thus, it needs to be replaced.

Timing belts are replaced after its suggested number of miles is reached. But if you haven’t kept track of the miles you have run with your car, there are symptoms to look out for so you would know when to replace the timing belt. Here are the following:

  •         The car’s engine experience too much vibration making the whole car shake
  •     It starts belching out more exhaust than usual
  •     If you face trouble in starting your car and hear awkward noises when doing so

Other cars display more symptoms than others like emitting excess smoke. But if one of these symptoms occur in your car, it is better to consult a mechanic. It most probably indicates that timing belt should be replaced or if not, there really is something wrong with your car.