Buying a used car needing a timimg belt

I was told the car I am planning to purchase would only need a timing belt, the problem is the car isn’t running and I am not sure if that’s normal. I would also like to know whether or not the car might need anything else w/out relying on the sellers word. How can I tell what the cars needs are w/out losing money?

Don’t buy any car that is not running as it may not even move (transmission) once it gets running. A broken timing belt could mean thousands of dollars to fix if an interference motor or simply $200 timing belt replacement if non-interference.

The only way of telling the car’s needs are fixing the timing belt and get it running. You really cannot tell much if anything if the engine does not run since you cannot assess the transmission or many other factors on the vehicle.

Given your name is CarClueless I would run… but post back with real key information in your post where we could really help like Make/Model/Year of vehicle. I would also include price to give us an idea if even worth pursuing.

It is a 1997 Audi A4 1.8 Turbo and asking price is 3000…I mean the car looks great cosmetically speaking but like I said, I am not aware of any other issues. ((sigh))

the turbo could be gone, engine could be gone, that’s many thousands of $$. Audi repairs are very expensive.


He said his local mechanics have told him it is the belt and he claims to have had it repaired 3 months ago and the belt has broken, shouldn’t there be some type of warranty?

According to (the timing belt maker) their timing belt is an “interference fit application”. This means that when the timing belt goes, the pistons and valves “interfere” with each other’s movement. If you were a mechanic…

Sooooo what does that mean? It isn’t worth buying? ((confused))

in simple terms:

  1. the cars timing belt broke.

  2. the guy had it replaced.

  3. the engine has an “interference” type engine, which when the belt breaks, the parts inside the engine clatter and jam each other up.

  4. he was hoping that a timing belt replacement was all that is needed. (but it obviously wasn’t ALL)

  5. now that the car wont run even with the ‘new’ timing belt he is trying to ‘unload’ it onto someeone else.

  6. this is where you come in; either you pay him a bunch of $$ for a car that doesn’t work, or…
    you RUN AWAY and save your money for a good car.

persoanlly if i were you, stop looking at audi. they are way too expensive to maintain, and upkeep will kill you. if you want to buy a new one, at least that way you’d get a couple years before repairs, but not a used one, which need ??? repairs at first.

i know, from your posts and questions you really want this car, but at what cost? its going to bankrupt you.

It means there’s a very good chance that when the timnig belt broke it destroyed the engine in the process. DO NOT BUY THIS CAR.

In a situation like this you have to ask…WHY didn’t the owner get the engine fixed before he sold it?? Is he trying to hide something? Sounds like he is to me.

Thank you all for your responses, I will not buy this car…I do own a 06 Honda Accord ex-l fully loaded but I was thinking maybe buying a second car due to the high gas prices…oh well, maybe another time, thank you

Buying a Second car because of higher gas prices makes no sense what-so-ever. It’ll take you 20 years to recover the cost of buying a car for that reason. And second…I don’t think the Audi Turbo is going to get much better gas mileage then the Accord.

The ONLY way buying a second car makes sense is IF the car you’re buying gets about 20+ BETTER gas mileage then the car you own AND you’ll be driving it about 30k miles/yr AND you paid LESS then 10k for it…AND you have no repairs (beyond normal maintenance) for this vehicle for the next 3-4 years.

and you sell the other car. and insurance costs are zero.

You are correct, it makes no sense at all. Sort of like buying a used car with ruined engine.

The cars get the same gas mileage according the I have a 2005 Accord EX with the 6-cyl and I get 28 MPG or better in rush hour. Even if that 10 year old Audi ran, it wouldn’t do that well.

No non-running cars unless you can make a profit on the body. Have the owner get the timing belt fixed and tell him that you will pay for the installation only if you then decide that the car is worth buying. I bet THAT will kill the deal. If it does, you just saved yourself a great big problem. You can have a good idea what the car needs if you DRIVE it to a mechanic. A non-running car needs no repairs. You aren’t serious about buying an old Audi with a broken timing belt, or are you out of your mind?