The timing chain found in a vehicle is a chain made of metal, while a timing belt is made of thick rubber. Your timing chain is located inside the engine and must be lubricated by the oil so everything runs smoothly. Every time the engine is in use so is the timing chain since it connects the crankshaft to the camshaft. As the metal links in the chain move, they move on the tooth sprockets on the crankshaft so that everything runs together smoothly. How do you know when your timing chain should be replaced?
It’s All About Timing
While there’s no set amount of miles your timing chain should be replaced, a general rule of thumb should be anywhere from around 50,000 to 100,000 miles. If there is a problem before you reach this milestone, then it would need to be replaced, but most serious issues occur once your vehicle reaches the “high mileage” territory. Older vehicles with a lot of miles can often experience aging timing chains that fail or just simply go bad due to wear and tear.
Why do Timing Chains Fail?
As you drive your car over time, the timing chain slowly stretches. There are guides or chain tensioners inside your engine that connect to the chain, and those could also wear out, which would result in the timing chain failing completely. If this happens, your car will not be able to operate whatsoever. Another common issue with timing chains is when the wrong oil is used. Most modern cars require synthetic oil so be aware of which type of oil your specific vehicle needs. Using the incorrect type of oil can create excess load on the chain, and the engine will not be lubricated properly.
How do I Know When My Timing Chain Needs to be Replaced?
While not all issues with timing chains are the same, there are some common symptoms you should be aware of. If your car has a rough idle and shakes, it could be related to the timing chain. Another common problem is when your car backfires. If your vehicle feels like it’s running rough or working harder than usual to drive, it may be timing chain-related. If your car isn’t starting at all, this could be for a number of reasons, but in many cases, it could indicate that the timing chain has failed completely.
If you’re concerned about your vehicle’s timing chain, bring it into Village Autoworks located in Woodbury, MN for a thorough inspection and repair. Contact us at 651-714-4000 to schedule an appointment today!