Timing belt on 2005 Camry?

An independent dealer where I purchased my 2005 Camry XLE 4-cylinder said I need to replace my timing belt every 60,000 miles. It has 180,000 miles on it. He quoted a price of $500. Trying to find a cheaper alternative, I went to a local mechanic, who told me it has a timing chain, not a belt, that I don’t need to replace.
The Toyota website was no help. I checked the maintenance guide that came with the car, and it says to replace the timing belt on a Camry “with 1MZ-FE or 3MZ-FE” (I have no idea what that means) at 90,000 miles. I could not find anything on point on the Car Talk website.
Does anybody know or can at least tell me how to find out? Even if it has a chain, should it be replaced at 180,000 miles?

The I-4 engine in a 2005 Camry utilizes a timing chain, rather than a belt.
Timing chains usually last for the life of the engine, and are not replaced proactively.

However, if you begin to hear what sounds like a chain rattling inside a metallic case, that would be a clear sign that your timing chain needs to be replaced. If you begin to hear that noise, chain replacement should be done w/in the very near future.

An independent dealer where I purchased my 2005 Camry XLE 4-cylinder said I need to replace my timing belt every 60,000 miles. It has 180,000 miles on it. He quoted a price of $500.

I wouldn’t bring any car there for repairs.

It seems this car has a timing chain. Which you only replace when you start to hear noises (as @VDCdriver pointed out). 180k miles is usually way too early for a timing chain replacement. And it’ll cost you a minimum of $1500 (closer to $2000) to replace a chain.

If you had a timing belt, there would be a replacement interval listed in the owner’s manual.

“with 1MZ-FE or 3MZ-FE”

Those are engine designations.

1MZ-FE and 3MZ-FE are V-6 engines, 3.0L and 3.3L respectively, which do have a timing belt.

You absolutely need to change your maintenance shop. Your engine (I have the same engine) has a chain.

Your dealer has an employee that’s giving you bad information. It may be that you were only talking to a “service consultant”, or worse yet a salesman (did he tell you he could give you a good tradein value after he told you you needed a timing belt?). "Service consultants often don’t know what they’re talking about. Many salesmen will tell you anything to get you to trade your car in.

A 2005 Camry does not need a dealer mechanic. Find a reputable independently owned and run shop. You’ll save tons of cash and won’t have this dealer giving you bogus information anymore.

Re: 1MZ-FE and 3MZ-FE

Those are Toyota’s engine numbers. You can see for yourself what engine number your own car uses. Pop the hood. On the underside of the hood there will be a decal there showing tune-up and emissions info. There should be a designation for the engine number on that decal. On my Corolla it says in big letters 4A-FE.

Once you post your engine number, the experts here can say with certainty whether you have a timing belt or not. It’s important to get to the bottom of this, as if you do have a timing belt you could be risking very expensive damage to the engine by continuing to drive it.

Note: Not 100% certain, but I believe a 2005 Toyota Camry w/a 4 cylinder engine has an engine number of 2AZ-FE and uses a timing chain, not a timing belt.


I’ll spell it out in no uncertain terms

I am 100% positive the 2AZ-FE uses a chain

I am 100% positive the 1MZ-FE uses a timing belt

So does the 3MZ-FE, which is a larger displacement version of the 1MZ-FE

Don’t go back to the shop that wanted to sell you a timing belt job.

Perhaps they were just ignorant and didn’t know you don’t have a timing belt

Or perhaps it would have been the most profitable timing belt job in history . . .