Good Timing: Proper Timing Belt Replacement Saves Money for North Kingstown Drivers
Posted August 7, 2016 8:41 AM
Knowing how their engine works can help North Kingstown drivers make informed decisions about auto care and prevent repairs to their vehicles. This is especially true when it comes to timing belts.
An engine's power is generated in the cylinders. Inside the cylinder is a piston that moves up and down while the engine is running. Power is generated in a cycle that includes four strokes of the piston. First, the piston drops and a valve at the top of the cylinder opens to let in fuel and air. The piston then rises, which compresses the fuel and air. At this point, the spark plug fires, igniting the fuel and pushing the piston down. This downstroke transfers energy to the engine, which provides the power it needs to run. The piston rises again, and a valve opens to release the exhaust.
All of this movement is orchestrated by a timing belt. The timing belt is so named because it keeps the pistons and valves operating in synch with each other, just as a conductor keeps all of the instruments in an orchestra in time with one another. Thus, the timing belt is critical to the proper operation of your engine.
Not all vehicles in the North Kingstown area have timing belts. Some have timing chains. A timing chain is more durable and rarely breaks, but timing belts are cheaper, so many use them to save money.
Timing belts wear out and break, so part of preventive maintenance for North Kingstown drivers is to replace the timing belt on schedule.
The results of failure of a timing belt depend on the type of engine in your vehicle, but they are always inconvenient and can be very costly for North Kingstown auto owners. If your engine is a non-interference engine and the timing belt breaks, the engine simply stops running. Now that can be an incredibly inconvenient situation depending on where you are driving around North Kingstown when it breaks, but it won't cause any engine damage. On the other hand, if your vehicle has an interference engine and the timing belt breaks, the valves on your cylinders will actually fall into the path of the pistons. Then things start getting chewed up by the motion of the engine and it will cost thousands of dollars to get everything sorted out again. Compounding the problem is that there aren't any warning signs before a timing belt breaks. A visual inspection of the belt is difficult also. In some vehicles, parts of the belt may be visible, but most vehicles hide the belt under a cover.
The timing belt doesn't even have to break to cause major engine damage. If it slips, even one notch, the result could be engine damage with repair costs in the thousands of dollars.
Our only car care option is to simply replace the timing belt periodically. You can check your owner's manual to find out how often your timing belt should be replaced. Many vehicles need a replacement at 60,000 miles (100,000 kilometers), but the recommended replacement mileage could be as high as 90,000 or 100,000 miles (145,000 to 160,000 kilometers). If your owner's manual recommends replacement at 60,000 miles (100,000 kilometers), however, don't wait until 65,000 miles (105,000 kilometers) to get it done. Remember what you're risking.
Replacing a timing belt is not a cheap part of preventive maintenance for North Kingstown vehicle owners. The belt is usually difficult to get to and often requires removal of some of the engine accessories. The cost of the replacement, however, is a lot less than what the repairs may cost if the timing belt fails.
For more auto advice on timing belts and other engine components, you can always consult with your service advisor at Hans Imports. When it comes to car care, ignorance is not bliss. It can end up costing you in a big way.
Omar and Dave are very thorough and knowledgeable about BMWs ! It's good to be working with folks who understand these cars and have the right equipment to service them. Thanks so much !
-Dave - Charlestown
Trustworthy and professional auto care, can't ask for anything more!
I have a 2007 e90 i
Omar formulated a plan to systematically address the problems we went by his plan and all I can say this is the most honest bunch of guys I have ever worked with .They go out of there way to save you money & not take it from you.
Want to run a successful business I strongly suggest this gentleman's business as a model Thanks Again Omar & the staff at Hans Imports
The service at Hans Imports is terrific. We've been a customer for about 11 years! They are detailed and they let you know what is happening with your car. I thank them very much and I appreciate all that they do!
-Mrs. Marianne M. S.
I drive a 1971 Volkswagen super beetle. I used to go to a different mechanic until my car developed a mysterious problem they couldn't fix after numerous tries. Another vw owner told me about Hans. From the moment I walked in the door I felt like a valued customer. My car kept breaking down and leaving me stranded until I took it to Omar and Dave at Hans Imports. What truly impressed me, besides the fact that my bug is running great and the problem is fixed, was their persistence and detective work to find the root cause and fix my car. Also, when Omar gives you an estimate on the cost of the repairs, the bill matches the quote. Whenever I call Hans, Sherri always answers the phone with a friendly greeting and makes sure my inquiries are taken care of. The main reason I would recommend Hans Imports is because they are reliable, trustworthy, and passionate about what they do. They truly care about satisfying their customers.
have been a customer of Hans Imports for a few years, and I am consistently pleasantly surprised by how easy they are to do business with. The explanation of what was done, as well as any suggestions for what should be scheduled is very comprehensive, and extremely helpful. Anyone I have ever dealt with (Omar, Sherrie, etc) has each provided exemplary customer service. The pricing is very fair, the work is done on time, and they have excellent communication. I look forward to continuing to take my car to them. I highly recommend them to others, as well.
very friendly and courteous mechanic, knowledgeable mechanic. I recommend him highly to anyone. thank you
-Manuel & Brenda S.
Great service. Thorough explanation. Great communication. Very professional. Highly recommended.
Great overall service!! Very good communication throughout the process. No surprises. Very knowledgeable and a pleasure to do business with.
Omar and Dave impressed me with their professionalism, friendliness,and brand knowledge. They took care of some mysterious issues that had been bothering me on my 2002 BMW 325i. I was very relieved that the problems weren't as bad as I was fearing. They also did some routine maintenance and a really neat headlight lens restoration that makes them look brand new. I wish I had discovered these guys a long time ago.
I was impressed you took the time to grease our doors..I had no idea they could be that quiet!!! lol
The work was completed courteously, promptly, and within the estimated cost.
Thank you Hans Imports for making my 71 Bug safe to drive. The price was right and you were very thorough about what work was done and what to keep an eye on. I'll be back again!
Courteous service. Repaired ahead of anticipated schedule, no problems.
Just arrived back in CA. The bus handled great.
-Steve & Molly R.
Appreciate how quickly you were able to take our vehicle in, assess the problem, and complete the repairs. Great follow through updating us as things progressed. Many thanks!
-Elaine & John C.
I really appreciate the repair of spedometer/odometer, in addition to the other work done. I also appreciate the report given upon completion of work which includes other work needed along with the description of work performed
5 Stars. Great service. Very happy.
The service with Hans Imports was quick and professional. This is the time of service you cannot find in many businesses today. Thanks!
Service was excellent. See you next time I need something done.
-John and Marie F.
You always do high quality work, Omar. I am a nut with four cars, and I can't afford to fix any of them...times are tough. Hope things are going well for you guys. thanks
You guys did a great job...very professional. Although I no longer own the car, I have recommended you to several friends. Good luck.
I have graduated from URI, so I won't be in the area anymore...but thanks for the service!
Fast, fair and honest. 3 traits missing in most repair shops these days. Thanks guys.
Unbelievable service. Omar and Dave went way above and beyond in servicing my aging Jetta wagon. Skilled, genuine, fair, they have earned all my future business.
This is the best place by far that we have had our cars serviced. Great Job and a great staff.
Mr.martin is diligent and precise in his diagnostic capabilities. Yes, I would recommend this business to a friend.
Yes and I have! (recommended this business to a friend). Get ready to do my fan in the next week,
Meticulous and professional mechanics with excellent customer service. The repairs done to my Vanagon look like works of art
I appreciate your courtesy and the thoroughness of the information that you provide. All repair shops could learn from you!
I had a very sick car...I didn't think it would ever be the same. By the time Hans Imports was done with it, it ran just like I remember it...quietly and smoothly. They are the best!
Great job. I will be back!
Hans was able to pinpoint all the issues our car was having, and prioritized the repairs.
Thanks Omar. I'm never sure I will get the least expensive service, but always certain I'll get the most honest assessment and more careful repair.
I am always very happy with the service I recieve from Omar & everyone who works in his business.
According to recent studies, 5 percent of all motor vehicle fatalities are clearly caused by automobile maintenance neglect.
The cooling system should be completely flushed and refilled about every 24 months. The level, condition, and concentration of coolant should be checked. (A 50/50 mix of anti-freeze and water is usually recommended.)
Never remove the radiator cap until the engine has thoroughly cooled. The tightness and condition of drive belts, clamps and hoses should be checked by a pro.
Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual, or more often (every 3,000 miles) if you make frequent short jaunts, extended trips with lots of luggage or tow a trailer.
Replace other filters (air, fuel, PCV, etc.) as recommended, or more often in dusty conditions. Get engine drivability problems (hard stops, rough idling, stalling, diminished power, etc.) corrected at a good shop.
A dirty windshield causes eye fatigue and can pose a safety hazard. Replace worn blades and get plenty of windshield washer solvent.
Have your tires rotated about every 5,000 miles. Check tire pressures once a month; let the tires cool down first. Don't forget your spare and be sure your jack is in good condition.
Check your owner's manual to find out what fuel octane rating your car's engine needs then buy it.
Keep your tires inflated to the proper levels. Under-inflated tires make it harder for your car to move down the road, which means your engine uses more fuel to maintain speed.
Lighten the load. Heavier vehicles use more fuel, so clean out unnecessary weight in the passenger compartment or trunk before you hit the road.
Use the A/C sparingly. The air conditioner puts extra load on the engine forcing more fuel to be used.
Keep your windows closed. Wide-open windows, especially at highway speeds, increase aerodynamic drag and the result is up to a 10% decrease in fuel economy.
Avoid long idling. If you anticipate being stopped for more than one minute, shut off the car. Contrary to popular belief, restarting the car uses less fuel than letting it idle.
Stay within posted speed limits. The faster you drive, the more fuel you use. For example, driving at 65 miles per hour (mph) rather than 55 mph, increases fuel consumption by 20 percent.
Use cruise control. Using cruise control on highway trips can help you maintain a constant speed and, in most cases, reduce your fuel consumption.
Keep your engine tuned. A fouled spark plug or plugged/restricted fuel injector can reduce fuel efficiency as much as 30 percent.
Inspect the engine's belts regularly. Look for cracks or missing sections or segments. Worn belts will affect the engine performance.
Have the fuel filter changed every 10,000 miles to prevent rust, dirt and other impurities from entering the fuel system.
Change the transmission fluid and filter every 15,000 to 18,000 miles. This will protect the precision-crafted components of the transmission/transaxle.
Inspect the suspension system regularly. This will extend the life of the vehicle's tires.