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Toyota Timing belt replacement

semezsemez Member Posts: 36
edited March 2014 in Toyota
I just past 70,000 miles and someone told me that I should have the timing belt replaced on my Toyota Corolla DX. I checked with a few repair shops and they say that I should be able to get at least 110,000 miles without having to replace the belt. My manual says it should be replaced after 60,000 mile. Is this a scam or what??? anyone have any suggestions for me


  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Yeah, do it. If the belt does last to its maximum of 100K miles, you have deferred (not even saved) spending $400 for a few years...if it doesn't last, you lose most of your engine and you cough up $2K-3K right here, right now.

    Doesn't sound like a gamble worth taking, does it? Not to me.
  • sebring95sebring95 Member Posts: 3,241
    Very very few toyota engines are interference when driven by a belt. One of the main reasons I've always bought Toyotas over Hondas. Seemed silly to have something like a belt break and ruin the engine. Granted with proper changes the belt shouldn't break, but it certainly can happen even to a new belt.
  • jinsongliujinsongliu Member Posts: 18
    If I remembered correctly, cars made before 96 should change the belt at 60k, cars made after 96 can change the belt at 90k
  • pjyoungpjyoung Member Posts: 885
    Pay them now or pay them later. Sure, the timing belt MIGHT last for 110,000 miles. If it doesn't, as the host has pointed out, it's going to cost you a lot more than you've saved to fix the engine.
  • enetheneth Member Posts: 285
    Actually, other than the inconvenience of being stranded, a Corolla engine will not suffer damage if the belt breaks. When there is the potential for engine damage in case of a belt breaking (as there is on the 1998+ Corolla), Toyota uses a chain, not a belt. The other Corolla engines are non-interference.

    That said, it should cost more like $200 to have a Corolla timing belt changed - or perhaps less.
  • ravvie4meravvie4me Member Posts: 110
    Honda belts are also known to go before they have to be changed (90k miles). Bye Bye VTEC!

    A lot of Toyota engines are switching over to chains (ie Camry/Highlander 4cyl), reducing maintenance costs for the engines lifetime. It's about time Toyota.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Timing chains wear out too, sometimes just as quickly as belts.
  • enetheneth Member Posts: 285
    I've never known anyone who had a chain-driven Toyota engine have the chain break with less than 150,000 miles on the engine - on the other hand, I've known a couple of Saturn owners who had chains break below 40,000 miles - it all depends on the design and the quality control. On my own Corollas, the belts have gone upward of 90,000 miles before replacement - and have never broken. Granted, the 60,000 mile change interval (which actually is part of the severe-service requirements on a Toyota, not the normal-service requirements) is a good idea. Honda, Subaru and others have lengthened the change interval to 90-105,000 miles in some cases - I'm not sure I'd want to let a Honda engine go that long, since they were at one time well-known for eating timing belts - and they're almost all interference-design engines).

    Still, the trend appears to be toward less maintenance required, which means that the trend toward chains (at least at Toyota) will likely continue. All the new Corolla engines use chains, and I suspect the new higher-output Camry 4-cylinder will as well (the V6 engines use belts).
  • spokanespokane Member Posts: 514
    Semez, I agree that the belt should be replaced. The "good news" is that, so far, the advice here has been very consistent.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    It is EXTREMELY rare for a Honda timing belt to break before it's reccommended replacement time.

    So, just replace it every 90,000 or 105,000 miles and you'll never have to worry about it.

    And, yes, timing gears and chains wear too along with tension pullys.

    Hard for me to believe that anybody would make a car buying decision based on a timing belt.
  • enetheneth Member Posts: 285
    With the models of the last five years or so, it is rare to have a belt break. With Hondas older than that, it was fairly common - I know of a couple of relatives whose engines were seriously damaged by belts breaking at as low a mileage as 40,000 - despite the 50-60,000 mile change interval of the time. For several years, Honda Civics were infamous for eating timing belts - if the rust didn't do them in after a few years, the belts would.

    Yes, things have improved since then - but older Hondas are known for being hard on timing belts.

    All else equal, a chain is a better idea than a belt on an interference engine. It wouldn't stop me from buying a Honda necessarily, though (although they'd have an easier time convincing me to buy one if they'd upgrade their sheet metal, which is still among the flimsiest on the road). Close friend has a CRV - bulletproof reliability, great traction - underneath a body that's built like a tin can.
  • sebring95sebring95 Member Posts: 3,241
    I based my decision to not buy a Honda on the belt issue. Was it a major contributor? no, but it was thrown into the mix as a negative. I look at a wide variety of factors when buying a car. IMHO, the Camry and Accord are equally boring to look at and drive so the deciding factors comes to other things like reliability, ease of maintenance, comfort, etc.

    When my wife wanted a new car, she was looking for something nice looking and fun to drive, so she didn't put as much emphasis on reliability, maintenance, etc. She bought what she liked the best, regardless of the other issues. That probably works for alot of people, but when you drive alot you have to lean toward needs more than wants.

    Maybe I analyze a new car purchase too deeply, but I regularly run 200K miles on a car and have yet to spend much money on repairs.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I guess...to me, anyway, having to replace a timing belt at 105,000 isn't that big of a deal.

    Still, now I have to wonder how many other buyers went to Toyota instead of Honda because of this.
  • sebring95sebring95 Member Posts: 3,241
    I don't think it's a big deal changing the belt, I think it's a big deal that IF a belt breaks the engine eats itself. Even though it's rare for a belt to break, it's alot to ask out of a $30 belt. Usually, you get some warning when a chain is about to go (usually at very high miles) but a belt will go with no warning at all.

    A guy I used to work with lost a belt on a mid-nineties Accord at around 120K miles. The belt was to have been changed when he bought it at 90K miles, but he figures the dealer didn't actually do it. They swore they weren't responsible, but I think they helped him with the repair cost anyway. I've never lost one on a camry, but usually change them between 90-100K.
  • gslevegsleve Member Posts: 183
    I was wondering if those whom you know with belt failure before the designated time frame ie: mileage, do you know if they accounted for time also, this is a contributing factor that is missed by a lot of people they only go by the manufactureres mileage table and not the time factor, this variable is a must in the equation of belt life. I have replaced many a timing belt mostly toyotas where they have not reached the mileage requirement yet the belt in an of itself is 5-8 yrs of age.

    While replacing I find it is so strecthed an out of spec it's a wonder they hadn't skip a tooth on the cam sproket moreover it hadn't snapped.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,672
    I never gave much thought to how long, age-wise (as opposed to mileage-wise) a timing belt can last. Just about all of my cars have had chains. Even my '00 Intrepid has a chain (or probably a series of chains), although the owner's manual recommends replacement at 105K miles. I used to have an '88 LeBaron turbo, and we changed its belt at 90K (way too long, but at least it was a non-interference engine).

    I drive enough that I'm sure I'd hit the mileage threshold before the time threshold on a belt or chain. But then I got to thinking...my Granddad has a '94 Taurus 3.0, that only has about 30,000 miles on it. He will have had the car 8 years come December. Would that thing be due for a belt change soon? Or does the 3.0 still use a chain?
  • gslevegsleve Member Posts: 183
    I not too sure if it is a belt you could always check his owners manual if not listed that could be a sign it is a chain or could check fords website for that particular motor and it's maintenance schedule or better yet call the dealer they would know precisley
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    For a belt to break before it's time. This just doesn't happen. If the belt snaps, it CAN cause damage to the engine but usually not. Still, not a good thing to gamble on.

    I once had a timing gear/chain fail on a Pontiac, and it bent several valves.
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