The timing belt is a very inexpensive item that is over looked so much in today’s cars. Not because of the cost of the part but the repair itself is the issue. Your owner’s manual will have a recommended time when the timing belt needs replacing. To replace a timing belt means the front of the engine including all the belt driven accessories must be removed to replace the belt. The bigger problem is if the belt is not replaced when it should be. The timing belt is under a tremendous load and when it breaks, the engine becomes non-repairable. Most engines today are interference engine by design. That means if the timing is off, the valves will hit the pistons and major damage occurs. The timing belt goes around the crankshaft and up to the cam shaft. This is how the valves open to let fuel in and close for combustion, the exhaust valves open to let out the spent fuel. When the valves open they push down into the cylinder where the piston is moving up and down. The piston is on the down stroke when the intake valve opens and comes back to the top as the valve closes and the gas explodes. That pushed the piston back down and the exhaust valve opens to let the exhaust out. When the timing belt breaks the bottom of the engine keeps turning but the cam stops. Half of the valves will be in the down position or open. The pistons hit the valves and extreme damage occurs. I wanted to see what a damaged engine looked like so the people at ASAP Motors dismantled an engine that had been damaged and allowed me to see the cylinders. If I learned one thing, replace the timing belt when the time comes.
After you receive the estimate from your garage, do your homework. Shop the internet for what you are looking for. There are many suppliers who will compete against each other trying to offer the best deal. After you settle on whom you want to do business with, check out the BBB report. They are a very good honest source of information about companies. Then take and compare the prices you’re found with the installer you are using. An import reason to keep in mind is if the installer supplies the engine, he warranties the labor. But he will mark up the used engine he selling you and could be purchasing from the same company you are.