Why Replacing Your Cambelt Is So Important
Your cambelt is a rubber belt that has teeth that synchronise and rotate the crankshaft and camshaft. It connects the top half of the engine to the bottom half causing the valves and pistons to stay in sync.
Overlooking or failing to change the cambelt when it’s due could cause serious engine damage. The cambelt or timing belt is located under the bonnet, usually at the front or on the side of the engine. Its purpose is to make sure that various engine parts are running in time or in sync.
What The Cambelt Does
The cambelt or timing belt controls the valves to open and close allowing fuel to flow in and out. Depending on the particular engine, it’s critical these valves open in time so they do not hit the engine’s pistons. The cambelt makes sure the vehicle’s camshaft and crankshaft are turning at the right speed, relative to each other. The crankshaft moves the piston up during the engine’s compression and exhaust cycles and moves the pistons down during the power and intake cycles.
With some vehicles, the cambelt may operate the water, oil, and injection pumps. Therefore, the cambelt is crucial to your car’s performance. All in all, a properly operating timing belt will improve the power transmission’s performance and reduce noise.
It’s important that you have the cambelt changed when it’s time, otherwise, the cambelt will stretch resulting in the engine’s timing being less effective.
What Will Happen If You Do Not Replace The Cambelt?
If you do not replace the cambelt when it’s time, you will be running the risk of serious engine damage because the valves will be hitting the pistons. If you consider the thousands of pounds it will cost to replace or repair your engine, it’s a lot cheaper to make sure you replace the cambelt in a timely manner. Keep in mind, when it starts wearing out, the more worn it will become, and the more likely it will break. Once the cambelt breaks you cannot drive the car.
The damage caused by a snapped cambelt will depend on the type of engine you have. If you have a non-interference engine, you will have minimal risk of serious engine damage because the engine is designed with valves and pistons not located in the same area. If you have an interference engine, a snapped cambelt can cause serious and expensive engine damage as the valves and pistons are hitting each other. A chain-driven engine does not use a timing belt and is not at risk of damage but the timing chain can stretch out over time causing other serious issues.
The cambelt affects major components within your vehicle so it’s really critical to have it checked and replaced when it’s due. You need to ensure your safety as well as others who might be using your car. Checking and replacing it in a timely manner will ensure emissions are as low as they can be.
When Should The Cambelt Be Replaced?
Vehicle manufacturers will advise when you should change it out. It’s either by the mileage or when it’s due to be replaced, depending on which comes first.
During our services, we will always let you know what the manufacturer recommends for proper replacement.
If you do not know when your cambelt is due for replacement, we can look it up on our autodata system or you should be able to look it up in your owner’s manual. If you need further assistance, please contact us, we’d be glad to help you out.
Are There Any Warning Signs When The Cambelt Needs Replacing?
There are no actual warning signs from the cambelt but you might hear a rattling or slapping sound before it’s ready to fail. It’s one of those components that even an expert cannot predict. Your car will still run properly until the cambelt eventually fails.
On the other hand, you might experience a loss of power from your engine or a slow pickup. If you do hear a rattling sound from the cambelt, it could be a sign that the belt has stretched but it can be misconstrued because the sound will stop when you rev the engine.
If you have any concerns, take your car to your mechanic and have it checked out.
We undertake servicing for all makes and models of car or van throughout the North Manchester and Manchester City Centre areas, you can use our booking form below or give us a call on Oldham – 0161 624 5060, Bury – 0161 761 3030, Van Centre Oldham – 0161 628 5270. We also offer a highly convenient Collect & Return service or a courtesy car so you’re routine is disrupted as little as possible while your vehicle is serviced or repaired.
Arranging Your Service
Drop your car off
Simply drop your car off with us between 8am and 10am and in most cases your vehicle will be ready for collection the same day between 3.30 and 5.30. Outside these hours you are welcome to park.
Wait with your car
Most servicing and repair work can be done while you wait. If this is your preference we have a superb waiting area equipped with free hot and cold drinks and a interesting viewing area where you can watch our trained technicians working on your vehicle.
If your vehicle needs to stay with us for 1 day or longer then you are able to pre-book one of our courtesy vehicles to keep you mobile.
Pick up / drop off
The ultimate hassle free solution; one of our drivers will arrange to collect your vehicle from your home or place of work at a pre-arranged time and then return your vehicle when the work is complete. Our service advisors will contact you when the vehicle arrives on site during the day to discuss the progress of the work and then advise you of the time you can expect your vehicle back. Contact our service advisors for more details.