The main indicators of a bad timing belt include a high-pitched noise coming from the engine, difficulties when starting the car, poor performance on the road and an excessive amount of exhaust. A vehicle owner must never ignore the symptoms of a bad timing belt. A timing belt that breaks often causes serious engine damage.
The timing belt plays a crucial role in the performance of an engine. It is responsible for the valves opening and closing properly. If the timing belt is worn, the engine cannot possibly function at a high level.
Inspecting the timing belt needs to be part of every vehicle owner's regular maintenance. Owners need to look for worn teeth and oil spots on the belt. A timing belt in good repair does not show these types of spots and has all of its teeth.
Automakers recommend that car owners replace their timing belts on a regular schedule even when no symptoms are evident. The exact interval between timing belt changes varies depending on the make and model of the vehicle. Most manufacturers advise owners to change the belt every 40,000 to 60,000 miles. The specific recommendation for any particular make and model is typically found in the owner's manual.