Toyota Corolla Timing Chain

Hi, I own a 2003 Corolla that is quickly approaching 100K miles. (I know, I’ve barely broken her in ;). I’ve found conflicting advice re: replacement of the timing chain… to replace or not replace, that is the question. Thank you so much for your help!

IF your Toyota has a timing chain (my 2007 has one) you don’t worry about changing it; with a proper oil change schedule it will last a very long time and will get noisy long before it breaks. Toyota has no special schedule for change out in its owners’ manuals.

Timing BELTS need to be replaced about every 100k miles. Timing chains last much much longer…I wouldn’t worry about it until about 250k miles.

Instead of taking advice from your friends about this issue, you need to begin to use the materials provided by Toyota, because the verdict of the car manufacturer is the only one that you can trust on issues like this.

If you look at the maintenance schedule, you will find no notation of any kind regarding replacement of the timing chain, and that is because a timing chain (as opposed to a timing belt) is normally a lifetime component. Most likely those well-intentioned, but ill-informed friends were thinking of a timing belt when they told you that you need to have the chain replaced.

When these people give you their advice, smile and nod, and then refer to the Toyota Maintenance Schedule for the correct information. Otherwise you are likely to omit some vital maintenance procedures, as well as possibly spending money on procedures that are not necessary, such as replacing that expensive timing chain.

Thank you all for your prompt replies. Much appreciated!

More than likely, you’ll never need to replace your chain (as you will probably trade it in before it breaks) unless you plan to keep it for over 200k miles. Then it might go another 50k or more.