12 August 2012

What I Did Yesterday

Tools are investments.

Knowledge is power.

Combined they save money.

What I did yesterday was change out the timing belt on The Lovely Harvey's ride.

Including tools it was only a $300 deal.  The stealership wants $750 for the exact same task.

It's not an easy job at all.  In fact it's a pain in the ass.  The timing belt is under several layers of other parts and those all need to come off to get to it.

Why would I change this part, since nothing was broken?

Preventive maintenance is something else that saves money.  The engine is what is known as an interference design.  That means that if the valves are open, the pistons will hit them.  The timing belt turns the cam and that closes the valve moments before the piston slaps into them.

If the belt breaks and the valves get smacked, you are looking at a new valve, minimum.  More than likely it means a total rebuild of the engine.  That's a lot more expensive than $300.

Other preventative measures taken were to replace the timing belt tensioner and water pump.  The have similar lifespans as the belt and are already exposed by the disassembly process that lets you get to the belt.

A bonus PM item is the all new coolant from draining the system!

I also replaced the alternator/air conditioning and power steering belts.  The alternator belt was just about dead when we got there so I saved The Lovely Harvey a call to AAA and some time stuck on the side of the road.

If I could remember where I put the damn code to reactivate the damn radio that goes into security mode when you disconnect the battery, I'd be golden!

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