I hope someone can help me figure out the best way to deal with a big mess. I usually take my 97 Volvo 960 wagon to the dealer for service, but have sometimes used an independent mechanic for small jobs. At one point, this mechanic told me I should change the timing belt, so I had him change it. I didn’t realize how crucial the timing belt was; otherwise I would have had the dealer change it. The mechanic did not give me any information or options about replacing the bearings along with the timing belt. Yesterday, when I tried to start my car, it wouldn’t start. I thought the car needed a jump start, so I called the independent mechanic, who said it wasn’t the battery, & towed the car to his shop. He then told me that the bearings had worn out, that the timing belt had jumped, and that there were probably bent valves in the engine. I asked the mechanic how this could have happened when I take my car in at regular intervals for servicing. He said that when he replaced the timing belt, he would have checked the bearings & they were good, but “a lot can happen in 30,000 miles.” My thought is that if the timing belt is only changed every 45,000 miles, & the bearings can wear out in 30,000 miles & destroy the engine, they should be changed with the timing belt. Not much help now.
I really don’t want this mechanic to touch my car again. I had my car towed to the dealer, but expect they will quote me a horrible price to rebuild the engine. My Volvo has about 123,000 miles, & could probably last another 100,000. I want to fix it, but is that foolish? Do I have any recourse with this mechanic?
Any thoughts appreciated - thanks!