There is an easy way to find out if your car is driven by a timing chain or timing belt motor. If, on the side (not top) of the engine, either left or right, there is a plastic cover, your car has timing belt.If there is no plastic on the side, you have a timing chain.
Below is a quick reference chart to identify if your vehicle has a timing belt, chain or gear. For more details such as recommended change intervals, please refer to the Warranty and Maintenance Guide or Owner's Manual for your vehicle. Model
A timing belt or chain is the device that connects the crankshaft to the camshaft. In the mid-1960s, Pontiac developed an overhead cam and claimed to be the first American car with a rubber timing belt. Before 1966, when Pontiac revealed this engine design, nearly every four-stroke engine used a timing chain.
The good ones, in my humble opinion, use chains. I prefer chains for the longevity, but belts are just fine, except in one particular case, and that would be in interference engines. Belts are cheap and quiet and (relatively) easy to change, but i...
We all know that a timing belt in a car engine needs to be replaced at recommended service intervals, but what about the timing chain? What is the difference between a timing belt and a chain? A timing belt is a toothed belt made of high-quality rubber; it runs outside of the engine, covered by a protective cover.
Cars that have timing chains instead of timing belts include the 2006 to 2016 Honda Civic, 2003 to 2016 Honda CR-V and Accord 2.4 and 2003 to 2011 Honda Element. Other cars with timing chains include the Toyota 2005 to 2012 Avalon V6, 1998 to 2012 4-cylinder Corolla and 2002 to 2012 4-cylinder Camry.
Some do-it-yourselfers can easily replace any timing belt or chain given to them without thinking twice. Others could easily destroy their engine. Replacing a timing belt yourself successfully depends on your skill level, the model of vehicle that you are working on, and if any special tools are needed.
Timing belts are also less complicated (chains require an oil bath). Chains are generally stronger, so vehicles with timing chains often drive more than just the cam with the timing chain. Due to stretch, when you change a chain you MUST replace all the timing gears, as the teeth will wear to match the chain stretch.
Following is the complete Toyota Timing Belt and Timing Chain List. Some Toyota engines have timing belts, some have timing chains. It pays to know what your engine has. Belts need to be replaced at normal intervals (usually every 90-100k on late model cars) or you will have hell to pay.
A timing chain also has tensioners that keep it in place, but unlike belt tensioners, the timing chain tensioners are controlled by the oil pressure in the engine. So, if your oil pressure becomes too low for some reason, the tensioners will fail, the timing will offset, and the chain will most likely fail in a spectacular fashion.