Timing Belts

About 12 years ago on a cold and dark night…..no this is not a fairy tale it’s a horror story!

Anyway, it was freezing, and I had my young baby in the car when it stopped!

I called the RAC the mechanic arrived and as he lifted the bonnet, he did that whole sharp intake of breath thing and said the dreaded words “The timing belt has snapped!”.

It meant nothing to me at the time, but I did learn a valuable lesson that day and over the following few days when I got the repair bill.

 What does a timing belt do?

The timing belt is a vital part of the mechanism that controls the valves and pistons in your engine.

When should I have the timing belt replaced?

Timing belts are made of rubber so they perish out over time.  Changing a timing belt is one of the more expensive maintenance items so many people will put it off, as I know only too well that can have pretty devastating consequences.

Timing belts are a serviceable item and should be changed as per the manufacturers service schedule, this is usually between 60,000 and 100,000 miles or 5 – 7 years.

We can answer questions about your specific vehicle, call on 01733 333838 or email [email protected]

How much does it cost to change a timing belt?

Timing belts in most vehicles are not easy to get at so the job is labour intensive.  The cost depends very much on the make and model of your vehicle and can cost anywhere from £280 to £1000 on average though the cost will be between £300 and £500.

An exact quote can be provided by calling us on 01733 333838 or emailing [email protected]

What damage can occur if my timing belt snapped?

This very much depends on the type of engine; however a snapped timing belt can cause bent valves, cylinder head or camshaft damage and damage to the pistons and cylinder wall.

The moral of this story

It may not be cheap to replace the timing belt on your car but to be clear, the cost of not replacing it will be much higher.

The cost to replace the timing belt on my car would have been around £390.  My final bill for repairs after the belt had snapped was £1283!

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