How the timing belt works
The rubber timing belt is part of most internal combustion engines and is responsible for synchronizing the engine’s functions. It controls the rotation of the camshaft and crankshaft and the opening and closing of the engine’s many valves to allow air and gas in and out, which causes the fuel to ignite in the combustion chamber. During this explosion, the valves push the pistons down.
“In order for the process to take place, the valves have to open and close at the right time.The valves have to be in the correct position as well as the pistons. The valves open at different times for each cylinder.
When the timing belt breaks, the valves, which are very light, will open at the wrong time and hit the larger pistons and cause damage.
When to replace the timing belt?
Unfortunately, in most cases, there are no obvious signs the timing belt is near death; it will just break. That’s why highly rated auto mechanics recommend replacing it every 60,000 to 100,000 miles. Always check your owner’s manual for the manufacturer’s recommendations.
When Should I Replace My Timing Chain?
Just like timing belts, sometimes it is necessary to replace your car’s timing chain. But unlike timing belts, timing chains usually will only need replacing if there is a serious problem. Normally the timing chain will be designed to last a car’s lifetime, and will not need to be replaced at a recommended service interval.
In some cases, despite not needing regular maintenance, a timing chain can wear to the point that it has to be replaced. Often this will be due to wear caused by other parts that are connected to the chain. Design faults, on the other hand, may also be a reason to replace it.