Signs of a Faulty Timing Belt

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Signs of a Faulty Timing Belt

Timing belts are not the most technically advanced auto part, but a faulty belt certainly has the power to wreak havoc beneath the bonnet. The belt controls the camshaft and allows the engine valves to open and close as necessary. If the timing belt should snap when a vehicle is running, costly repairs and significant engine damage are very likely. Fortunately, a few warning signs occur as good indicators of a faulty belt, and these signs let drivers know when it is time to replace their timing belts.


Visible and audible signs

A faulty timing belt may show visible signs of wear and tear that indicate it is time to replace the belt. Car owners can look for these noticeable defects when examining their belts to determine if new timing belts are necessary. In some cases, there are certain audible warnings that let drivers know the belts are faulty.

Missing teeth

Normal wear and tear reduces the number of teeth along the surface of a timing belt. The typical lifespan of this belt is 80,000 kilometres to 100,000 kilometres. The longevity of a belt greatly depends on its quality and typical driving conditions. If a belt is missing a number of teeth or the teeth show signs of excessive wear, it is more likely the belt could stretch or snap.

Glazing on underside

A shiny underside on a belt is usually indicative of glazing, which occurs when a timing belt is stiff and does not have sufficient flexibility. Other than looking for a glossy appearance, car owners can determine if their belts have glazing by pressing the surface of the belts. If this action does not leave an indentation, the belt is possibly faulty.

Oil spots, cracks, or abrasions on surface

A timing belt in proper working order does not have any spots. A faulty belt, on the other hand, could have oil or coolant spots along the surface. Cracks are another indication of a bad timing belt. A neoprene belt in good condition should not have cracks on the underside or topside. Abrasions along the edge of the belt are also a warning sign of a defective belt, particularly if the filaments inside the belt are noticeably visible upon inspection.

High pitch noise

One of the most noticeable signs of a bad belt is a high pitch noise when the car is running. This sound is usually louder when first starting the engine, but it may also occur when idling. In most cases, it is similar to a shrieking or squealing noise.


Performance issues

In addition to visible signs, certain performance issues serve as tell-tale signs of a faulty timing belt. These issues may become more severe over time if owners do not take action, and this could affect other systems under the bonnet.

Car only starts after multiple attempts

The timing belt plays an important role in camshaft and engine valve function, and a faulty timing belt could prevent a car from starting right away. If the engine does not catch after several tries, the timing belt is possibly the culprit.

Excessive shaking

The timing belt has to operate in perfect time with the pistons and valves to make the car run smoothly. If the timing belt is defective, it usually means the timing of the car's engine is off, and that could result in excessive shaking when the vehicle is running. Although many autos shake slightly when the engine is on, the normal vibration is minimal on a properly running vehicle.

Irregular exhaust emissions

When a timing belt is faulty, the engine has to work harder to function properly. As a result, it expels more exhaust. If the exhaust pipe spews out more smoke than normal when the engine is running, it is possibly a sign the timing belt is defective.


How to buy timing belts on eBay

As timing belt repairs are usually only a temporary fix, a faulty belt usually requires replacement. Thanks to the authorised sellers on eBay, you can find a new belt to get your car running smoothly in no time. The sellers offer a variety of timing belts for different vehicle makes and models along with all the auto repair tools and manuals you need to get the job done. You can even search for a timing belt kit using the search bar on every page that includes all the necessities in a single purchase for convenience. 

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