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May 10, 2017

What is a timing belt?

Hello. My name is Larry Childers. I’m the service manager with the Virginia Tire & Auto of Chantilly. I want to take a few moments and explain what a timing belt does.

It’s a common maintenance item that a lot of people find confusing. It’s difficult to access a timing belt inside an engine bay, so I’m gonna use this model to try and explain what it does.

The timing belt is this rubber belt that synchronizes the movements of the crankshaft and the two camshafts so that the engine’s valves open and close at the proper time during the cylinder’s intake and exhaust strokes. Put simply, the timing belt synchronizes the movements of the components inside the engine as it’s running.

What’s important to know about the timing belt is because it’s made of rubber it’s moving anytime the engine is running it wears and it will eventually break. That’s why we recommend replacing the timing belt based on the manufacturer’s recommended mileage.

Replacing a timing belt water pump is an expensive proposition. It’s labor intensive. It can take 4 to 6 and a half hours depending on the vehicle. It’s an intricate job. It must be performed by an experienced technician. And if the work is done with us it comes with a 2 year, 24,000 mile warranty.

So please feel free to visit any one of our 13 locations. We’ll be glad to go over your car and answer any of your questions.

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