Timing belt

I have a '04 Buick LeSabre with 45,000 miles. Yesterday, when I had the oil changed, the tech said to have my timing belt checked. Could you tell me if the car should be showing any symptoms if this was true. Also, I “thought” this was something that didn’t happen until much higher mileage. Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated.

Timing belt? The engine in your vehicle utilizes three timing chains.


I think you should go back and get a price quote for a timing belt replacement…

That person that told you this is not a “tech” and should not be working on cars period. This person is a liar and should be fired.

You actually should go back and tell the manager that you will never set foot in that place again. Be sure to point out the ignorant liar in his shop.

was this at a jiffy lube,quick oil change place. I’d go back too and get a complete written estimate to, just for kicks!

Sorry, for not using the proper terminology. Can you tell me if the car should be experiencing any symptoms?

They didn’t work on the car, they just suggested I have it checked out.

Yes it was but they don’t do anything but oil changes there. The guy said he thought we should bring it to a mechanic to have checked. I really just want to know if the car should be showing any signs of a problem with this.

What the others are trying to say is that your car’s engine uses a timing chain, as opposed to a belt, and that timing chains do not require periodic replacement. The timing chain should last the life of the engine.

Whoever told you your timing belt needed checked or changed was either ignorant or trying to charge you for something you don’t need. Maybe both.

There are no symptoms and there is no problem. You may want to consider taking your car somewhere with more knowledgeable technicians.

I just checked the manual and it’s called a engine drive belt. It also says it should be replaced at 50,000 miles. The facility does not do anything but oil changes and didn’t charge me anything; just made a suggestion.

What you are talking about is likely a “serpentine” drive belt that drives the power steering pump, the AC compressor, water pump, and alternator. These do break on occasion and with the age and mileage having the belt checked for cracking and signs of wear is a good idea.

In this case, I think the tech was making a valid point. Since they don’t sell the belts and he wasn’t trying to make some extra money for his shop it would be a good idea to follow his advice. Perhaps your next oil change at 50K miles should be with a good independant mechanic who can check the belt and other items like hoses and make sure you car is up to snuff on maintenance. Before this service get out your owner’s manual and see what it says about 50K service.

There’s a BIG difference between a timing belt and a drive belt.

Take it to another mechanic. Did he say timing belt??? Or is it YOU who wasn’t sure?? Very confusing.

Drive belts do need to be replaced every 50k miles or so.

The answer to the question you keep on asking and not getting an answer to is that the only symptom you will see from a tired timing belt/chain is if it jumps a notch, your car will probably run badly if it runs at all. What makes timing belts a sensitive issue is that many cars have interference engines that will self destruct if the belt/chain breaks or slips off too many notches while running.

Tester is almost certainly correct that you don’t have a timing belt. The only belt Gates shows is a single serpentine belt http://www.gates.com/part_locator/index.cfm?location_id=3598

I agree with Uncle Turbo, the guy you were talking too was probably talking about the visible belt on the front of the engine that drives the accessories. He may have noticed some wear or cracking. And yes, needing replacement at 45000 miles wouldn’t be out of the ordinary.

Thanks so much. I do believe that you and Uncle Turbo are right. Thanks for all your help; I’m bringing it to a service facility tomorrow.