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How can you tell if your timing belt has been changed?

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I am having my 91 with 137k all checked out after it was running rough last week and the mechanic discovered some bad gaskets while we were under it with the exhaust off. These gaskets were supposed to have been changed recently but are never the less leaking. This prompted us to dig deeper and i asked him to take a look at the timing belt to see if it had been changed (i was was told it has been in the last 25k). I am going down to look at it in a few hours and would like to know what to look for?

The mechanic thinks it might be the original because he says it shows signs of wear but i sure don't want to replace it if it has been recently done.

What are the signs to look for to tell if a timing belt has been done recently or needs replacing?
 
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Look for receipts. No proof=never happened.
Since it's a '91 you could see if the cover has been drilled or replaced to the newer style, but that wouldn't tell you how old the one in there is.
 
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If it's been changed by a dealer it's possible to run the vin number by a dealer and see if something pops up. This actually worked for me on my nissan a few years back. It don't cost anything to try.:smile:
 
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Every post I've ever read says the "TB looked like brand new" even when it was far past it's time to be changed. If you see signs of wear and no solid proof it was changed, I'd get it changed out soon.
 
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TB is not a visually inspectable item. if someone can tell you the condition of your tb based on visual inspection, they are a fool.

non of the original tbs I have taken off has shown any excessive signs of usage or age.

its not the TBs that are the issue but rather the bearings in the water pump and TB tensioner.

you cant visually inspect those items.

usually what happens with a TB failure is the bearings get old, lock up and the belt instead of rolling over the pulleys are dragged across the pulleys.

this cooks the belt till it breaks.

The way to check for TB history is either a receipt or you can look for the new water pump cover drain hole.

if there is no receipt, for all intensive purposes, the tb has not been done.

any shop that does the TB will have given the customer a receipt since that piece of paper is worth about 1700$ :wink:

also no one forgets a TB job, its the equivelant of a person's 16 or 21st birthday rolled into one.

if an owner hums and ahs about scratches their head about maybe if the tb has been done or not.... I would bet $ it has not been complete.

happy motoring

Rob:smile:
 
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Every post I've ever read says the "TB looked like brand new" even when it was far past it's time to be changed. If you see signs of wear and no solid proof it was changed, I'd get it changed out soon.

lol looks like new? :rolleyes:

it takes about 1hour of wrenching to just get a peak at them. :biggrin:

they are probably talking about the alternator belt :tongue:
 
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Thanks for the quick replies guys. I went down and looked at it and it did look new to me and the ASE mechanic that is working on my car but one of the other mechanics who has taken an interest in my car thought it looked old. I dont believe it is the original but cant tell how old it is. The water pump looks brand new and that is one of the reasons i think the po might be right about it recently being done but i have no proof of such.

The story goes, the PO said he bought the car right after the guy before him changed the timing belt and water pump. No receipts from anything that owner did.

I was hoping for some sure fire indicator once we got it open but i guess there is not such thing so the next step is waiting to see what they want to replace it and if its in the budget right now.

Any other indicators? I wish they had to leave a stamped date or something when they do a TB change.
 
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TB is not a visually inspectable item. if someone can tell you the condition of your tb based on visual inspection, they are a fool.

non of the original tbs I have taken off has shown any excessive signs of usage or age.

its not the TBs that are the issue but rather the bearings in the water pump and TB tensioner.

you cant visually inspect those items.

usually what happens with a TB failure is the bearings get old, lock up and the belt instead of rolling over the pulleys are dragged across the pulleys.

this cooks the belt till it breaks.

The way to check for TB history is either a receipt or you can look for the new water pump cover drain hole.

if there is no receipt, for all intensive purposes, the tb has not been done.

any shop that does the TB will have given the customer a receipt since that piece of paper is worth about 1700$ :wink:

also no one forgets a TB job, its the equivelant of a person's 16 or 21st birthday rolled into one.

if an owner hums and ahs about scratches their head about maybe if the tb has been done or not.... I would bet $ it has not been complete.

happy motoring

Rob:smile:

WP drain hole? What would this look like? The reason i ask is because the water pump looks new but then again everything on my engine is pretty clean.
 
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If it's been changed by a dealer it's possible to run the vin number by a dealer and see if something pops up. This actually worked for me on my nissan a few years back. It don't cost anything to try.:smile:

When i first got my NSX i took it straight to the closest Acura dealer and ordered some parts from them. While i was parked in front of the dealership some service guys had come over and were looking at my car so after i finished ordering the parts i asked one of them if they could pull the records for my car using the VIN? He said that they couldn't do that there. I didn't understand if he meant they (that particular dealership) wouldn't , or if it was not possible because Acura's maintenance computers weren't linked or something?
 
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Hey Steve

give me a couple of minutes. i'll post the pictures for you :biggrin:

the new water pumps came with a drain hole that is lower than the original wp they put on.

if the drain hole is lower, then you know at least it has been changed once.

its good that Honda made this change. We can now tell for sure. Also it prevents the shady tree TB "change" esp on a technical and tricky car as the nsx.
 
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I know Nissan dealers computers were/are linked. A friend of mine whom worked at Nissan did it for me when I purchased my 350Z and it pulled every time the car had been in for any kind of service. I bought the car in Dallas and I live in Bmt, so I know "some" dealers can do it. Good luck.
 
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nsxwaterpump.jpg


here ya go.
:wink:

happy motoring
Rob :smile:
 
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I know Nissan dealers computers were/are linked. A friend of mine whom worked at Nissan did it for me when I purchased my 350Z and it pulled every time the car had been in for any kind of service. I bought the car in Dallas and I live in Bmt, so I know "some" dealers can do it. Good luck.

yes nissan has a great dealer communication system but they customer support sucks!

just had some issues with my Nissan and got the run around for 4 weeks from nissan USA before i could force a straight answer out of them. Nissan wont return my calls, ignored my requests. i just ended up fixing it myself. Their product is quality is definitly not in the same ball park as Honda and Toyota. My Nissan product is only 4 years old and this repair with me putting in the labor will run me about 1000$ in parts.

never buying a nissan again. oops, rant :biggrin:
 
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Steve, pm me your vin. I have a friend at Acura that will try and retreive something. No they are not linked like nissan, but he can get into the database and see what he can do. No promises but it's worth a shot. David.:smile:
 

f9u

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Not sure if it is gonna work......
I would check the crankshaft pulley bolt, because most of the mechanic will use impact gun to break loose it so it will show very little round off on top of the bolts or scratch on the bolt.
IMO, i rare turn the engine by the crankshaft pulley bolt for regular service and the timing usually will not off by "itself"(except something wrong-that's another story)
 
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I tried to get the service history for my NSX from my local dealer (who has never worked on the car). They said the dealers are NOT linked and you would have to individually call each dealer that worked on it for the service history.

You'd think it wouldn't be that hard to develop a single network for all of the dealers to be linked up, but oh well. If you know where your car has lived and which dealers have worked on it, you should be able to call them and pull up the history.
 
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Hey thanks again guys. That picture is going to help allot and tell me if it has at least been changed once. If Davids friend can't find any records then i should probably go ahead and do it again since it would have been around that time again anyway but hopefully something will come up that tells me it has already been recently done.
 
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