Broken Altenator Belt = $1,000 Repairs

I have a 2003 Kia Spectra 1.8 liter DOHC. Last week my wife was driving when the dash lights dimmed and the engine stalled out. She coasted to a safe stopping location and parked. A good Samaritan stopped and offered to jump start the car which she accepted, although without success. After towing the car home I discovered that the alternator belt was shredded. I replaced the belt but the car would not start. I finally had it towed to a repair shop and was told that the belt had gotten inside the housing where the timing belt lives and caused the engine to “jump time.” Later that day the repair shop called to advise me that the valves were bent. After much anguishing, I authorized the shop to replace the bent valves.

Today, I received word that the machine shop that was resurfacing the head found that the head was cracked.

My question is this, can a broken alternator belt cause this kind of damage or am I being taken for a ride?

Well, to find out, ask to see the timing belt cover. If there’s no damage to the cover, then I can’t see how the timing belt was effected by this belt failure. But if you find that the cover was cut or damaged by the failing belt, it can cause havoc with the timing belt.