Why You Should Never Ignore a Scheduled Belt Service

Most people understand that they must take their car or truck to a mechanic at determined intervals for routine service. A car service visit includes oil and filter changes, brake pad renewals and adjustments here or there but does not usually involve any "major" work as such. However, some service visits tackle larger jobs to avoid the risk of more significant damage, which is certainly the case regarding timing belts. So, what exactly is this type of belt, and why should you never avoid this service visit?

How the Timing Belt Works 

A timing belt connects the engine crankshaft with its camshaft. These two shafts orchestrate the movement of the engine and, in particular, the valves and pistons.

The crankshaft is responsible for creating torque and is directly connected to the gearbox and transmission to drive the road wheels. However, the crankshaft can only turn when it is forced to do so by the pistons, and they can only move up and down following detonation.

To trigger this detonation, valves need to open and close at precisely the right moment to allow the explosive mixture in and the exhaust fumes out. As these actions can only occur when the pistons are in a certain position, this calls for precise timing and full coordination. And this is where a timing belt comes in, as it causes the camshaft (controlling the valves) to turn in concert with the crankshaft (controlled by the pistons).

Keeping the Belt in Good Condition 

This may sound very technical, but all will be well so long as the timing belt is in good condition and correctly adjusted. As with everything mechanical, it can break down over time, and its longevity will depend on the type of timing belt in place. Some belts are actually metal chains, while others are made from reinforced rubber but can also degrade.

Major Issues Ahead

If the belt wears out and begins to slip, this can cause all manner of problems. The engine may begin to misfire, and you could see dark smoke from the exhaust. The oil pressure levels will start to decline, and eventually, you'll be faced with broken valves, pistons and a very expensive repair bill.

Taking Prompt Action

So, pay close attention to your manufacturer's recommendations. When the log book tells you to take your vehicle in for a timing belt or chain service, do not ignore those sage words. 

About Me

Dealing with a Faulty Auto

If your car isn't running very well, you may want to take action. When I noticed that my car wasn't running as it should be, I didn't take any action and I soon paid a heavy price. That price was being broken down by the side of the road for a couple of hours until my car could be towed to an auto repair shop. The mechanic who inspected my car gave me plenty of advice about where I had been going wrong and the steps I should take to maintain my motor. I hope my blog helps to keep you on the road.



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