A cambelt or timing belt or timing chain is that part of the internal combustion engine that times the rotation of the crankshaft and the camshaft so that the engine valves open and shut at the proper time during the cylinders’ intake and exhaust strokes. A malfunctioning cambelt timing belt can trigger multiple problems with engine performance, fuel efficiency and overall car health.

Symptoms of a bad cambelt/ timing belt

a. High-pitched engine sound: If the cambelt or timing belt has gone faulty, the engine will emit a shrill or whirring sound during ignition and idling.

b. Ignition problems: A bad cambelt or timing belt is one of the most common things mechanics check if your car takes many attempts to start up as the revolution of the cambelt needs to be in the exact proportion to that of the crankshaft.

c. Visual damage: Missing ‘teeth’ and spots of engine oil and/or coolant are both symptoms of a faulty cambelt timing belt.

d. RPM issues: If your engine starts emitting sounds between a particular range of revs, the first thing you should rule out is a bad cambelt timing belt.

e. Abnormal exhaust emissions: If the exhaust pipe suddenly starts spewing lots more smoke, you should probably check the cambelt timing belt for malfunction as it can put the engine under a lot of strain.

f. Car jitters: A faulty cambelt/timing belt could be the culprit causing those unexplained car shakes and shudders. A functional belt will keep the engine in perfectly timed motion and will produce no such sudden shakes. Not so with a faulty cambelt timing belt.

If your car is in need of a cambelt/timing belt inspection, bring it in for the team at Mayne Automotive to take a look at.