Timing belt

selling
volkswagen
beetle

#1

My timing belt broke as I was driving. Obviously, I lost engine power and stopped. Does this necessarily destroy the valves and require a new head as well as a new timing belt?


#2

It may or may not require a complete new head, but it’s almost guaranteed there’s some valve damage, and possibly worse.

No way to know for sure until the head is removed for examination.

This is going to cost big bucks.

How many miles on the car when the belt broke?


#3

Some engines are called “interference” engines and some are not…The Gates timing belt site lists the interference and non-interference engines…I THINK VW’s are the interference type which means timing belt failure will destroy the head and sometimes the entire engine…


#4

$2700.00 would you believe? The car has 106,000 miles. I was planning on selling it. I guess I have no option other than have the work done, or I’ll get nothing for it.


#5

Oh, yes, I can easily believe the $2,700 estimate. I wouldn’t be surprised to find the total bill came to more than that.

You’re right, it’s not worth much in its present condition.

What’s the recommended replacement interval for the timing belt, according to the owner’s manual?


#6

$2700?? Is that the Dealership price? If so, time to shop around. An independent repair shop, using a “rebuilt” head or having your head rebuilt at an automotive machine shop might be able to save you some money…There is a regular industry built around repairing these belt failures…


#7

90,000 miles. So I guess I had it coming. Thanks so much for your input. I really appreciate it.


#8

Thanks for the suggestion. I’ll look into the re-built option.


#9

Interference engines are the ones that kill the valves. Non-interference engines have enough clearance to save the pistons from slamming and bending valves.

Sounds like you have an interference engine. I like non-interference engines and timing chains.