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The likelihood of valve damage after a timing belt failure

I replaced the water pump and everything was fine, no leaks. Then as I was driving around the neighborhood to get up to operating temperature the belt failed.

My question is; When the belt fails how often is there damage to the valves? Is it enough to warrant pulling the head to check for damage.

I won’t go into the layout of this engine and why the A/C hoses are so close to the engine when there is huge cavity along passenger side or the use of those stupid spring style hose clips.

What car is it (Make Model and year) auto or manual? How many miles on the clock?

Actually, Natureboy, 1936 engines used a different valve arrangement than today’s cars.

Seriously, if we have no idea what kind or model of car you drive how can we tell you if you’re likely to have valve damage?

You need to know if you have an “interference engine” or not. If you have an interference engine there will be damage when a timing belt breaks. You can research this at the Gates.com web site.

What kind of car/truck are we talking about? Different models have different engines; engines can be “interference” or “non-interference”. If you have an interference engine then valve/head damage is a near certainty.

Sorry thought the info would pop up
1995 Ford Escort, 1.9L Fuel injection

non interference type engine according to Gates.com

That means a good chance no valve or piston damage. I’d put a new belt on and see if it fires up. Remember to follow a good manual’s instructions, and rotate the crankshaft twice once the belt is installed to make sure the timing marks will line back up as a decent double check.

you might be luckey on this one but this job mightr be more then you would want to take on. you have to reset the base timing on the engine or line up everything from scratch . i would do some research then make up my mind witch way i want to go do it myself or take it to a shop. Dirty Harry said it the best “a good man has to know fhis limitations”

thank you for all the prompt responses, I am going to replaced the belt. i’ll post when I finish the job

Non-interference engine and a piece of cake to replace the timing belt. Very slim probability of valve damage (I have never seen or heard of this engine damaging valves due to timing belt failure. I’ve replaced these timing belts in a half hour.

It is a good thing these engines were non-interferance. They were notorious for the water pump seizing and breaking the timing belt. Happened on mine! You may be among the 3 Escort 1.9 owners that replaced the water pump BEFORE the timing belt failed;-)

This car was my Grandma’s, she managed to put 38k miles on it before I got it 6 months ago, so its a stream of minor failures

Like the others have said, no valve damage on this engine. And I would have to say that this engine has got to have the easiest and most accessible timing belt of any out there.

The easiest timing belt I have ever seen was a ford thunderbird turbo coupe. It was literally a 20-30 min job. I think if all tbelts were this easy, many headaches could have been saved over the years.

I would say this is the easiest timing belt out there if you have access to a lift, although it’s still easy with no lift. If you don’t have access to a lift, a Fox body Mustang with the 2.3L is the easiest (no need to lift or jack it up for anything), although the Turbo Coupe would be very similar but I’ve never done one.

The 2.3L Pinto engine might be the easiest timing belt replacement of all time. It did require removing the distributor cap to line up the rotor and some manuals didn’t mention that, leaving a few DIYers scratching their heads. Years ago, a non-gear head was stranded across the street from an Auto Zone and the counter man called me. I sent the man the Alldata print out and the counter man called later telling that the man drove away in less than hour after buying a T-belt and a few cheap tools.

Yeah, I thought about the 2.3 rear wheel drive engines but those had 3 sprockets to line up instead of just the 2 on the Escort engine. When the Escort engines were still around in large numbers for timing belt maintenance if a guy took more than 20 minutes for the job (30 if the water pump was replaced) he was given the Golden Cow award for really milking the job.

Yes, the 1.9L is non interference. I had one break on my '88 Escort several years ago, just lined up the timing marks put a new belt on and everything was fine. I think all Escort engines with the exception of some of the early model 1.6L are non interference.

I’ll second that, FordMan. When the belts went on the 1.9, they didn’t do any damage. My sister and BIL had an early Escort with the 1.6 liter CVH engine, and his water pump seized and snapped the belt (60,000 miles…Right on schedule). He had to have the valves replaced. Fortunately, it was covered by an extended warranty that he bought.