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Can't see it if it isn't there?

In my 6 month love affair with a 2007 Hyundai Sonata, I can not get a straight answer on whether the 2.4L engine has a timing belt. Local mechanics suggest the online Gates catalogue, indicating the car has a timing chain and not a belt. If nothing else, I have learned that Hyundai’s owners manuals and dealer recommended services are sketchy and ambiguous at best. Of course Hyundai is desperate for business in our area, and willing to suggest anything. I typically put 200K miles on a car. Is this a mistake waiting to happen? I was not planning on $1800 in timing belt replacements. Anyone outside of the Hyundai network that I might call or email for a straight answer?

If Gates has a belt listed for your car, then it has a belt…You can also tell just by looking at the engine. Remove any plastic trim covers and see it the front of the engine has an oil-tight cover sealing it. That’s a chain cover. Belt covers look similar, but they are not oil tight nor are they secured as well…

Most posters will send you to www.gates.com, where you can select a timing belt for any car that needs one. If there is no reference to a timing belt anywhere in your owners manual, it probably does not have one. All timing belts need replacement some time or mileage.

Well, what a surprise. I thought all Hyundais had timing belts, but apparently the 2007 Sonata does not. Gates does not make a timing belt for this car, and that means it doesn’t have one. This is good news because timing chains do not require periodic replacement.

If the owner’s maintenance schedule doesn’t list timing belt replacement you can be sure there isn’t one. Hyundais with timing belts have a 60K mile replacement interval.

Now you have one less thing to worry about. Drive the car and enjoy it. I hope you are following the maintenance schedule. If you want to get 200K you have to follow the schedule.

In particular, pay attention to the fluid replacement interval for the automatic transmission (if your car has an automatic). Ignore this one at your peril.

Thanks to everyone for the responses. I also hear these cars need coolant changed at regular intervals, or else all sorts of things start to happen.