Most vehicle manufacturers recommend a cambelt (also called a timing belt) change every 40,000 to 80,000 miles. It is most important to check with the manufacturer and know when this is due. We can do it for you if you are a customer of ours.
As the cam-belt operates other components, the condition of these can affect the life of cam-belt itself. Over time, the bearings in the tensioner, idlers or water pump, these components may dry out causing a squeaking noise or catastrophic failure. In some cases, if left unchecked, these components can seize up or explode completely throwing the cam-belt from its pulleys, causing extensive, expensive and sometimes irreparable damage to the engine. It is therefore advisable, if your vehicle is either over 7 years old or has covered more than 60,000 miles, that these components are also replaced at the same time as the cam-belt. As a matter of course Service MOT Repairs will replace the tensioner and idlers at the same time as the cam belt.
In many engines, the cam-belt is also used to drive the water pump, which if it seizes, has a bearing failure or leakage can have the same consequences as the components mentioned above. A sign that this may be the case will be evidence of engine coolant within the cam-belt cover and is an indication that the water pump needs replacing too. As the replacement of the cam-belt requires the removal of many parts to gain access, it’s cost effective to check the water pump and if necessary, replace at the same time as the replacement of the cam-belt.
The cam-belt can fail without any prior warning symptoms, but there a few things that could be indicating there is a problem;
Noticeable engine vibration. If the cam-belt is stretched, or missing any teeth, the rhythm of the engine will be off causing noticeable vibration or shaking.
Leaking or overheating engine. Though these may not be a direct result of a bad cam-belt, they can cause undue wear and tear on the belt causing it to fail prematurely.
High pitched noises or whirring noise. If the engine is making a whirring noise it is a good indication that a bearing has gone. High pitched noises and squeaks will also need to be investigated as a matter of urgency.
If you are in any doubt, let us check it out. Call our garage on 01604 491011 or email email@example.com and we will get your car booked in.