Timing Belt: Working, Replacement & Maintenance Tips

Table of Contents

What is a Timing Belt?

One of the most important parts of an internal combustion engine is the timing belt, sometimes referred to as the cambelt. Its primary function is to synchronize the rotation of the crankshaft,

Which controls the pistons of the engine, and the camshaft, which opens and closes the valves of the engine.

The timing belt is made of sturdy rubber that has been strengthened with fibers or strands to increase its tensile strength. The crankshaft pulley and the camshaft pulley(s) are wrapped around it, which is located inside the front or side cover of the engine. The timing belt is driven by the crankshaft’s rotation, and the timing belt in turn drives the camshaft(s) at a specific ratio.

The timing belt ensures proper air-fuel mixture intake and effective exhaust gas expulsion by controlling the timing of the engine’s valves. For the engine to run and execute properly, this synchronization is essential. The valves and pistons may clash if the timing belt breaks or slips, causing catastrophic engine damage including bent valves or broken pistons.

It’s crucial to remember that timing belts are not used by all automobiles. Some engines use a timing chain, a metal chain that serves the same purpose but lasts longer and needs to be replaced less frequently. However, timing belts are still a common component in many automobiles, and to avoid potential engine damage, they must be periodically replaced according to the manufacturer’s suggested intervals.

How does it Work?

In an internal combustion engine, a timing belt connects the crankshaft pulley (connected to the engine’s crankshaft) with the camshaft pulley (or pulleys), as appropriate. To fit precisely into corresponding teeth or grooves on the pulleys, the belt is toothed or ridged on one side.

The timing belt, which is wrapped around the crankshaft pulley, starts to move as the crankshaft, which is propelled by the downward action of the pistons, revolves. The belt rotates as a result of the teeth on the belt coming into contact with the crankshaft pulley’s teeth.

The timing belt connects the camshaft(s) to the crankshaft, which delivers rotational force to the camshaft pulley(s) as the belt rotates. The engine’s valves, which open and close to let fuel and air into the combustion chamber and exhaust gasses out, are controlled by the camshaft(s).

The timing belt ensures that the crankshaft and any associated camshafts continue to rotate in unison. Its precise design, which includes a certain tooth count and pitch, establishes the ratio of rotation between the crankshaft and the camshaft(s). For the valves to open and close in accordance with the location of the pistons at the proper moments, synchronization is essential.

When should you replace the timing belt ?

Depending on the vehicle’s make, model, and engine type, the timing belt replacement interval can change. The manufacturer’s guidelines are essential to follow because they offer the most precise advice for the particular car you own.

Timing belts should generally be replaced every 60,000 to 100,000 miles (or 90,000 to 160,000 kilometers). However, some cars, especially those with interference engines, might have shorter intervals. An interference engine is one in which the combustion chamber’s pistons and valves share the same space. In an interference engine, the timing belt breaking or slipping can seriously harm the engine.

Consult your vehicle’s owner’s manual or get in touch with a manufacturer-approved service provider to find out how often you should change your timing belt. The precise mileage or time-based interval for timing belt replacement will be given to you by them.

It’s crucial to follow the suggested replacement schedule for timing belts and not skip any of them. While the engine is operating, a timing belt failure can cause serious engine damage and expensive repairs. Therefore, following the manufacturer’s recommendations is essential to preserving the durability and dependability of your engine.

How to Maintain the Timing Belt?

The key steps in keeping the timing belt in good condition are to adhere to the manufacturer’s recommendations for replacement intervals. Here are some pointers for keeping the timing belt in good condition:

  1.  For information on how often to change your timing belt, refer to the manufacturer’s recommendations for your particular vehicle. This schedule must be followed in order to avoid potential belt failure.
  2. Routinely check the timing belt for evidence of wear or damage. Look for any obvious deterioration, such as fractures, fraying, glazing, or other noticeable flaws. Have the timing belt inspected and changed if necessary if you notice any problems.
  3. Check the timing belt’s tension to make sure it’s in the right place for proper operation. It can fail or prematurely wear out if it is excessively loose or tight. 
  4. Prevent contamination by keeping the timing belt and the region around it clean and free of any pollutants, including coolant and oil. These things can damage the belt’s material and shorten its life. If there are any spills or leaks, take care of them right away.
  5. Drive carefully to prevent adding to the stress on the timing belt and other related parts by avoiding rapid acceleration or deceleration. Driving consistently and smoothly reduces unneeded strain on the belt.
  6. Maintain your car routinely in accordance with the manufacturer’s advised maintenance schedules. This covers typical coolant and oil replacements as well as other maintenance duties. 

It’s crucial to remember that not every car has a timing belt. Timing chains are used in some engines, and they need less maintenance overall. In order to ensure adequate timing belt maintenance, always refer to the specific instructions for your vehicle.

Where can you Buy Timing Belt in Dubai?

Timing Belt are available at different suppliers and dealers of auto spare parts in Dubai. Noorhan is amongst the leading brands that deal with genuine auto spare parts and aftermarket parts for different car brands, including BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Porsche, Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Mazda, Jeep, Ford, and other Japanese, European, American, Korean, luxury cars brand.