So the question comes up. How do you know if your timing belt is bad? First off, what’s the timing belt? A timing belt is a rubber belt typically mounted underneath the engine cover that is used to transfer power from the crankshaft to the camshaft and also maintain a relationship and keep the two things is time together where other vehicles might have a timing chain, uh, vehicles that have a timing belt. It does the same job, the time and belt on this car, uh, is located on this end. If we’ve removed the cover in order to make it easier to see, uh, it’s operation and condition. Um, and in certainly that would be the easiest way to tell if indeed the timing belt was bad is to remove the cover and get at it. But in many cases, it may not be quite that convenient to actually do that because it could take hours worth of work and you don’t even know if that’s the reason why the vehicle won’t start.
So there are other symptoms that we can look at and determine whether it is likely that a timing belt is bad. First off, one thing that we can do is we can actually take and hook up a vacuum gauge to the intake manifold and observe the vacuum as we crank the engine over. One of the first things is that you learn a trade school is basically that uh, you know, while on injured provides power. Basically, it’s a pump. So the air comes in through the air cleaner, goes through the edge and, and basically leaves out the exhaust pipe. So we are looking for signs of suction at the intake manifold. As long as the time at the belt is whole and working, we should have some back room. And if it’s not that we won’t have any, we may actually have some pressure. So, in this case, I have hooked up a remote starter switch and while the cranks over we’ll watch to see if there is some evidence of vacuum.
there does seem to be, so this could it be one easy way of telling if we potentially had a problem with the timing belt. Uh, there are other reasons why an edge you could have a low vacuum. Uh, but if the engine vacuum is there, then we know that it is working as a pop in that part of it is good. The next thing we can do is look for some evidence that the camshaft turns the Camshaft directly or indirectly is responsible for opening and closing the valves in an engine. In this case, we’ve actually removed the valve cover on this engine and while we cannot see the camshaft, the Camshaft actually is located underneath where these rocker arms are and the valves can be seen with their springs right across the front of this engine.
And it’s all one of the other sides that we would look for to find out if a time about was bad, is whether the valves operate or not. In many cases, you could actually see these rocker arms through the fill hole for the uh, oil. Uh, but one of the things that we’re looking for is when the engine is cranked over to see if customers will often ask, how do I know if my timing belt is going bad owl, it’s very difficult to tell whether it’s going bad or not because say for instance, like with this timing belt, and this is a typical long with the cogs on the inside, we are going to inspect this part of it and it looks pretty good.
There are no cracks in it that they’re immediately obvious. But the truth of the matter is if we look at this end of it here, the belt has actually broken in to and this vehicle stop running because uh, at the time in bell had actually broken the one if this one came from. So basically want the thing to take into consideration with a timing belt is that they have a recommended service interval at which they should be changed. Depending on the car, that interval could be every 60,000 miles up to 120,000 miles. So I’ll change it before you end up with this situation. And the timing belt breaks. It’s important because in some vehicles they have what is referred to as an interference engine, and at the timing belt breaks, you could end up with the significant amount of engine damage because the valves and Pistons could collide. So Jay’s owes time of belts when it’s due.