The timing chain is a critical component of modern engines. Unfortunately, many people aren’t aware of the role this part plays in the overall operation of their vehicle. A timing chain can be found in any combustion engine.
It helps to synchronize the camshaft and crankshaft’s rotations. This ensures that the valves close and open with proper timing. In some engines timing chains also help to prevent the moving pistons from coming into contact with the valves.
Similar to a chain on a bike, timing chains in vehicles have a series of teeth in order to remain locked in place. It’s important to distinguish a timing chain from a timing belt. The latter component serves a similar function, but it is made from a different material.
To keep everything running smoothly, it’s important to keep the timing chain well lubricated with oil. Each time the vehicle is used, the engine is going to run and the timing chain will suffer a little bit of ware.
Without a fully-functional timing chain, you run the risk of damaging other parts of your vehicle’s engine. Let’s take a closer look at the best ways to keep your timing chain in great shape to prolong the life of your engine and your vehicle.
Timing Chain FAQ
Feel free to contact us if you have questions or would like to set up an appointment. One of N7 Auto Repair’s experienced representatives can help you with anything you might need.
1. Do timing chains need to be replaced?
Like many other components of a vehicle. Timing chains don’t last forever. However, their lifespan is greatly determined by how well you take care of them. Since the chain operates within the engine, it needs to receive regular lubrication from the engine oil. Typically, a timing chain should be replaced every 40,000 or 100,000 miles.
The exact amount of time will depend on the type of vehicle, production year, and use. Generally speaking, timing chains don’t require replacement unless something is wrong with it. You should always consult a professional to see if your vehicle’s timing chain is in operating condition.
2. Can timing chains stretch?
Timing chains can be found in the front of your vehicle’s engine. They’re attached to a series of pulleys and gears that move different mechanical parts. Most notably, the timing chain is attached to the camshaft and crankshaft. Even though a timing chain is made from durable material, it can begin to stretch over time.
Since this vital component of the engine is used every time the engine is turned on, it’s inevitably going to suffer some wear. As the name suggests, any issues with the timing chain cause problems in your engine’s timing capabilities.
3. What should you do when it breaks?
There are many different ways a timing chain can break or become damaged. The most common problem is when a timing chain snaps and ends up bending the nearby valves. However, there can also be collateral damage to the camshaft or cylinder head. In some instances, there is even damage caused to the cylinder or piston wall. While it’s feasible that no damage might occur after a broken chain, it’s not a likely outcome.
If your vehicle’s in need of a timing chain replacement, feel free to reach out N7 Auto Repairs for a free quote. Even if you’re not sure, it’s always a good idea to have a reputable professional assess your car to determine if you need a timing chain repair or if everything’s in working order.