Car Timing Belt Suddenly Broke and 3 Main Causes – Timing belts are made of rubber in which there are various other constituent materials. It is strong and perfect in some conditions. However, timing belts have some drawbacks that should get special treatment. And in this article, we will discuss it in the context of a timing belt that breaks suddenly while traveling.
Cases like this are very rare. That’s if you take good care of the car, especially the timing belt. Age, other component factors, and oil problems are the most common causes of a timing belt breaking. Unfortunately, the timing belt is not a drive belt that is easy for us to replace at any time. We have to do that carefully and if not, even though it’s installed, we can’t start the engine.
Car Timing Belt Suddenly Broke
The timing belt is a serrated belt that connects the crankshaft to the camshaft or camshaft. For some car engines, manufacturers use the timing chain and gear to replace the timing belt. But all the functions of the three types are the same. Its function is to move the valve mechanism according to engine speed.
What happens if the timing belt breaks?
If the timing belt on an engine breaks, the simplest obvious is that the valve mechanism will not work. In other words, the engine valves will not open and close. But the most annoying thing, this problem often occurs when we are traveling when the engine suddenly breaks down and when we restart, there is no sign of the engine running.
These are signs that the timing belt of the car is broken. Then what is the solution if the timing belt breaks while traveling?
The only solution is to contact the nearest repair shop. That’s because without a timing belt, the valve can’t work. If the valve doesn’t work, how can the engine start?
But what if the location of the car is far from the crowd?
Of course this is the most difficult for car drivers. For example, when you are traveling to the mountains, the timing belt suddenly breaks. Even if there is a repair shop on the side of the road, there is not necessarily a replacement part because each car brand has its own parts.
But you should be able to anticipate such an incident, one way to anticipate it is that you need to save your subscription to the crane service or repair shop beforehand. So when this incident happened, there was still hope even though it was a bit troublesome.
Due to timing belt damage it got into serious trouble. Even if you bring spare parts, you may not be able to install them at the scene. Timming belt is different from a drive belt or V belt, the timing belt is located behind the front engine cover, to open it you need to disassemble the pulleys, engine mounting and other engine components.
In addition, when installing the timing belt you also have to know the signs on the camshaft and crankshaft pulleys. The timing marks must match each other for the timing belt to work properly. If this timing mark is not right, then another problem will arise, namely a bent valve.
Timming is related to the accuracy of the valve to open according to the position of the piston. If the position of the piston is in the suction stroke, the suction valve must be open. If the timing is wrong, there could be a collision between the pistons that move up but the valve opens. The result is a bent valve.
3 Main Causes Car Timing Belt Suddenly Broke
There are several things that make the timing belt break, including the following:
1. Age factor
If your car is over 5 years old and has never changed the timing belt, you should be wary. Because the timing belt can break at any time. This component is located inside the engine cover so it is difficult to check its condition without disassembling it.
At most, you will hear a squeaking sound from the front of the engine. That is an early sign that the timing belt needs to be replaced with a new one.
Timing belt life differs from one car to another. But if we average the timing belt life, then it ranges from 40,000 to 60,000 km. In that mileage, then you have to replace your car’s timing belt with a new one.
2. Valve spring too hard
The stronger the valve spring, the stronger the force required to press the valve to open. In the end, the timing belt has to work extra because the load on the valve springs is greater. This additional workload of the timing belt can also cause the timing belt to loosen and then break.
This happens a lot if we disassemble the engine and replace the valve springs. Moreover, usually people who like to use goods that are not recommended by the manufacturer. If you modify your engine by replacing the valve springs, make sure that the valve pressure is in accordance with the manufacturer’s pressure requirements. If it exceeds the pressure that is required by the manufacturer, then obviously you have to be prepared to experience a break in your car’s timing belt.
3. Exposed to oil spills
Timming belt is basically made of rubber, and is dry. So it does not require lubrication, when there is oil spill it will make the timing belt slip. In the end, this will make the surface of the timing belt even more eroded and eventually break.
Unlike the timing chain, which uses a chain, it is mandatory to obtain lubrication. Precisely if there is no oil pressure, the chain can break easily or at least there will be a rough sound from inside the car engine.
In this case, it is clear that there is no tolerance for oil entering the space where the timing belt is located. So try no matter how small the oil leak to get into the timing belt, you have to fix it immediately. Repairing engine oil leaks is not as dangerous as when you break the timing belt on the way.
Tips To Keep Timing Belt Safe
To anticipate the timing belt breaking in the middle of the road, there are some tips that you can follow. This is also part of how you take care of your car’s timing belt.
1. Make sure the timing belt is in good condition
We can ascertain the condition of the timing belt from its age and the sound coming from the timing belt area. If there is no noise in the engine area then the timing belt is safe. However, if there is noise, especially when the timing belt is too old, you better replace it with a new one.
As I said above, the average life of a car’s timing belt ranges from 40K-60 km. That is the maximum value. And therefore, I recommend that you replace the timing belt with a new one before your timing belt replacement time runs out. Simply put, it is better to prevent the timing belt from breaking, than to suddenly break the timing belt.
2. Make sure you replace the timing belt at an experienced repair shop
There are so many cases that the timing belt breaks after replacing it with a new one. Why did this happen to the car? This turned out to be due to an error when installing the timing belt. So I suggest to replace sensitive components like this, trust it in an experienced repair shop.
Maybe the workshop looks professional and experienced, but the mechanics who work there are not necessarily. Although there is a re-checking procedure of course. Well, to ensure these conditions, you can do a road test before bringing your car home. During the road test, please accelerate several times and also restart several times. Thus, if there is a problem with the timing belt installation, you will immediately find out.
3. Make sure you keep your trusted repair shop number and towing service
This is the last anticipation when the timing belt actually breaks in the middle of the road. Even though we have anticipated the above, there are still other factors that unexpectedly cause the timing belt to break. So it’s good we also anticipate when the incident actually happened.
Conclusion – Timing Belt Suddenly Broke
Timing belt breaks suddenly we can group into two parts. First because of common problems such as service life, oil wetness, or even because of other mechanisms such as valve springs that are too strong. Second, the timing belt can suddenly break because the installation process when replacing the timing belt is not correct. Therefore, it is very important to maintain the timing belt, but testing the vehicle after changing the timing belt is also very important.