What kind of damage can occur if timing belt breaks?

The extent of engine damage from a broken timing belt depends on the type of engine in your vehicle.

If it’s an interference engine, the timing belt keeps the values and pistons from smashing into each other. If the timing belt snaps, you’ll end up with bent valves (at the very least), cylinder head or camshaft damage, and possibly damage to the piston and cylinder wall.

In a non-interference engine, the pistons and valves don’t occupy the same space so they won’t slam into one another if the timing belt breaks. Though there won’t be extensive damage to the engine, you will need to have your vehicle towed in for PU Timing Belts repair.

Is a timing chain the same as a timing belt?

Some cars are equipped with a timing chain instead of a timing belt. A timing chain is a fairly maintenance-free component and will rarely need to be replaced. If you don’t know whether your vehicle has a timing belt or chain, you can find the information in your owner’s manual or ask one of our technicians.

Need to have your timing belt replaced? Call the automotive repair professionals at Shade Tree Garage in Morristown, New Jersey. Click here to make an appointment with Shade Tree Garage for timing belt repair now.

DIY Timing Belt Replacement: A General Guide

Steps of a Timing Belt Replacement

What you’ll do depends on the specific model you’ll be working on, but these are the basics common to all:

Knowing the specific components you need to remove to gain access to the timing belt.
Finding all the timing marks to synchronize the camshaft and crankshaft sprockets.
Setting cylinder number one to Top Dead Center.
Replacing related hardware.
Properly threading and applying tension to the belt.
Tightening bolts to torque specifications to prevent engine performance problems.
When Should the Timing Belt Be Replaced?
when the belt breaks,
when a related component fails, or
when you reach the manufacturer’s recommended service interval.
More on this later.

Unfortunately, most belts get replaced when they break because of wear, because of some hardware related failure (bad idler pulley, failed tensioner, oil or water leaks), or because the belt stretched too much and caused some engine performance problems.