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Timing belts are an essential part of many cars today and should be in good condition to ensure that an engine always runs at peak performance. In essence, the timing belt is tasked with the job of telegraphing the rotational motion of the engine to the cam shaft.

As the name implies the belt provides the properly timed rotation to the cam shaft to maintain the cams turning with the correct timing. In doing so the intake valves and exhaust vales will open and close when they are supposed to ensuring continuous good engine operation. Accurate calibration is essential so that valves and pistons all work perfectly and in concert.

Extraordinarily Small Tolerances Between Pistons & Valves

Going further it is important to distinguish between interference type engines and non-interference type engines. An interference engine is noted by its extraordinarily small tolerances that are found between the pistons and valves.

Conversely, non-interference engines have considerably more space in this regard. This distinction becomes a concern when there is a timing belt failure. For example, in an interference engine a timing belt failure can cause irreparable damage to an engine internally. A non-interference engine is far less likely to experience this sort of engine breakdown with regard to a timing belt failure.

A Timing Belt Will Usually Require Replacement About Every 75,000 Miles

It is also vital to know that some vehicles require that the timing belt be changed at certain intervals while other cars do not require this service. Consult with your dealership or mechanic to be sure.

While each vehicle is different, as a standard rule a timing belt will usually require replacement about every 75,000 miles. Staying ahead of your timing belt is a wise decision as a timing belt failure can sometimes equate to a complete engine loss and a very expensive engine replacement project.