Engine Timing Belt – Sets The Mechanical Heartbeat Of The Engine

Engine Timing Belt - Sets The Mechanical Heartbeat Of The Engine
Engine Timing Belt - Sets The Mechanical Heartbeat Of The Engine

Neglecting your engine timing belt, could destroy your engine from the inside out.

So, the timing belt, is a very simple part, but it can also be a ticking time bomb.

Depending on the year, make and model of your vehicle, there’s a pretty good chance you have a, engine timing belt. It’s function, is to connect the crankshaft to the camshaft pulleys.

Your engine timing belt, keeps your engine ticking and needs to be changed, before it breaks.

It actually sets the mechanical heartbeat of the engine. Consequently, by operating the valves, in extremely precise relation, to the position of the crankshaft. 

Worn Engine Timing Belt
Worn Engine Timing Belt

Also, this isn’t a part that will give a warning, before failure. For example, a wear indicator, check engine light or strange noise, before it fails. So, if your belt does fail, the only sound you’ll hear is, your engine instantly shutting down.

The inside of your engine has countless moving parts, that spin, slide or reciprocate, at thousands of revolutions per minute. All of these parts operate, within an extremely close proximity to one another.

So, Neglecting The Timing Belt Has The Potential Of, Destroying Your Vehicle’s Engine.

Timing belt neglect, can cause it to, fail and snap. As a result, the camshaft(s) and valves will, stop moving. This means that the pistons, may contact valves, breaking them off inside the engine. Some engines simply cease to work and don’t wind up with internal damage, though most do.

Cracked Engine Timing Belt
Cracked Engine Timing Belt

If you’ve determined that your vehicle has a timing belt. Then, be sure to have it changed, ahead of its recommended service interval. Check with your owner’s manual to be sure or consult your dealer for more information.

If a timing belt is not changed on time, it could wind up snapping and destroying your engine. Of course, preventing such nightmares from happening is simple, just stick to your vehicle’s maintenance schedule.

Common Causes Of Failure Include:

  • Misalignment
  • Excessive Load
  • Under-tensioned Belt
  • Weak Drive Structure
  • Damaged or worn pulleys
  • Debris in the timing pulley or drive

Note, That Your Particular Vehicle, May Not Have A Timing Belt At All

So, do all cars have a belt?

The answer is no, many modern cars, have a timing chain instead.

Timing Chain Setup
Timing Chain Setup

A timing chain, is a maintenance free unit and rarely needs replacement. So, how do you know if a engine has a timing chain or belt? Consequently, you can check your maintenance schedule or call your dealer.


So, can you change your own engine timing belt? If you have the tools and the skills, it’s not that difficult. But, the hard part is usually, the removal of the harmonic balancer as the bolt holding it, is very tight.

As a result, And, you might need a special puller to take the pulley off. Another difficult task is, to set the timing properly and adjust the belt tension. For this you might need, the factory service manual.

Thank You !