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For anyone thinking of getting a vehicle with a wet timing belt some words of caution.


Silversurf
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Number two son mentioned that he is getting more of these in with premature or pilot error, belt breakages, or engine damage, usually totalled, due to rubber particles blocking the sump pick up filter.

 

Premature even with correct service procedures, intervals,checks, lubricants etc, ...............pilot error, market stall oil, last oil change ??, only tops up oil when the red oil light, or the money light as son calls it, comes on, there is another money light, the engine management light. 😂

 

Two transit customs were delivered today both with the " It just stopped " note, neither previous customers of his, before he started to diagnose them he contacted the customers for more info, the first one said  he only had it for a few months, no history and the engine just cut out, the second said similar but asked if son would check the brakes whilst it was in because he was recently having to press harder on the pedal, alarm bells rang as soon as he said this due to son knowing that the same belt debris also blocks the brake vac pump oil filter.

 

Both later confirmed as wet belt breakage, with potential engine write off, pending further dismantling.

 

The first thanked him, asked for the bits to be put in a box and he would have the van picked up, whilst having a chat with son the owner mentioned it had gone through two turbo's quickly and would this have any bearing on it, son said yes, the debris would have blocked the turbo feed pipe, causing them both to seize.

 

The head was taken off the second, damage to valves, all pistons, two with holes in them, it's sat in his storage compound awaiting the owner or son sourcing a good used engine.

 

Just a little warning that may help someone.

 

 

Edited by Silversurf
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I have 3  acquaintances with 'wet-belt' engines that have failed dramatically due to the belt disintegrating, leading to blockages down the line.  The engines all suffered terminal damage during this year. If I remember correctly these Vauxhall branded cars were actually fitted with a Peugeot-made engine (I might be wrong there) & they all failed before the first or second service.
Yet another failed attempt at 're-designing the wheel' LOL. I bet it was justified by being at least a penny cheaper.......one in a long line of such  bean-counter inspired disastrous decisions.

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Interesting head up Silversurf!

 

Can’t beat a decent chain drive, whilst not perfect they do tend to be more durable than belts of any kind.  

 

Anyone else remember the Fords back in the past that had fibre gearing to drive the camshaft? That’s another “improveent” that didn’t last very long either :rolleyes:

 

What engines are fitted with “wet” belts (other than Transits that is) It’s information that some on here might find useful. I for one will be sure to avoid any such engines in the future. 

 

As an aside I have always advised people, even if they cannot afford anything else, to never ever skimp on changing engine oil and filter at the designated intervals, and to always use quality, not supermarket, oil. Oil is the engines lifeblood and has to work very hard, especially when cooling a turbo that can easily get hot enough to glow cherry red at times., I often wonder what temperature my (fully synthetic and expensive) engine oil is at when towing up a long hill, on three quarters throttle or more, in southern France in the summer. I expect it would probably scare the wotsits out of me. It’s as thin as paraffin when cold so it must be really thin when seriously hot yet it still does the job.

Amazing stuff ! 

Experience is something you acquire after you have an urgent need for it.

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Mr Plodd in answer to your query: I'm informed that  Peugot 208 (1.2L?) engines also have the wet belt & have a reputation for failing.  This engine is also used by other marks. If the oil is not of the exact spec. & changed frequently (especially on diesel engines prone to diesel pollution of the oil) then disaster quickly follows. The belts disintegrate &  the resulting pieces foul-up everything. But they do work OK under lab. conditions, so how can anything go wrong?

 

Guess what: the sole justification is that it's cheaper,  What a surprise LOL.

 

Both my cars are over 17yo & people ask me why I prefer older car designs...........I suspect proven sound engineering & simple repairs might have something to do with it.

 

It  occurs to me that car design is rapidly descending to caravan levels: anything to reduce the price & never mind the failure rate , the guarantee claims come under a different column!

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:Thankyou:

 

Its a bit like things like fridges in caravans having fancy PCB controls (to go wrong at the most inopportune moment)

 

To my mind you simply cannot  beat an old fashioned mechanical rotary switch.

 

Off

230 volt

12 volt

Gas 

 

Simple, cheap, and most importantly, reliable.

 

Don’t get me started on “Infotainment” screens in modern cars either. I much prefer a physical switch for the wipers etc, I know where it is, I know how to work it, I don’t have to take my eyes off the road to scroll through all sorts of menus on a screen in order to be able to see through the screen! Progress it ain’t!,

Edited by Mr Plodd

Experience is something you acquire after you have an urgent need for it.

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On 30/12/2021 at 18:31, Mr Plodd said:

Interesting head up Silversurf!

 

Can’t beat a decent chain drive, whilst not perfect they do tend to be more durable than belts of any kind.  

 

Anyone else remember the Fords back in the past that had fibre gearing to drive the camshaft? That’s another “improveent” that didn’t last very long either :rolleyes:

 

What engines are fitted with “wet” belts (other than Transits that is) It’s information that some on here might find useful. I for one will be sure to avoid any such engines in the future. 

 

As an aside I have always advised people, even if they cannot afford anything else, to never ever skimp on changing engine oil and filter at the designated intervals, and to always use quality, not supermarket, oil. Oil is the engines lifeblood and has to work very hard, especially when cooling a turbo that can easily get hot enough to glow cherry red at times., I often wonder what temperature my (fully synthetic and expensive) engine oil is at when towing up a long hill, on three quarters throttle or more, in southern France in the summer. I expect it would probably scare the wotsits out of me. It’s as thin as paraffin when cold so it must be really thin when seriously hot yet it still does the job.

Amazing stuff ! 

 

Just curious, but is there any evidence that supermarket oil with a specific oil spec is inferior to equivalent 'branded' oils?

 

Many of the supermarket oils are made by major oil producers, mostly in Belgium.

 

Why do US cars with the same spec engines as European cars have 3000 mile (or less oil) changes where European cars have up to 20,000 mile between changes?  Whilst there can be huge variations climatic conditions in North America  few people  travel outside their local area any more than Europeans do.

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Had a quick search and it looks like the engine has issues with diesel fuel getting into the sump, hence damaging the belt which causes pieces of rubber to circulate and blocks oil way to the turbo and other systems...

 

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Here's an interesting article about wet belts written 10 years ago.  

https://www.ngfeurope.com/~/media/NGF Europe/Site Content/News/Automotive Design Europe Feature.ashx

It claims "The days of changing timing belts are over" and "The belt is designed to last the life of the engine".

The truth of the matter is that if the belt let's go, the engine is damaged virtually beyond repair.   Mechanics familiar with the set up recommend a change  at 60K miles or every five years.     

Citroen C5-X7 Tourer+Avondale Rialto 480/2
https://jondogoescaravanning.com

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7 minutes ago, Jaydug said:

"The days of changing timing belts are over" and "The belt is designed to last the life of the engine".

 

 

Well that is “kind of “ correct. If the belt fails the engine gets wrecked,so that’s the end of its life! :angry:

 

Talk about “The best laid plans of mice and men” 

Edited by Mr Plodd

Experience is something you acquire after you have an urgent need for it.

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Ah, the good old Ford 1.8TDCI

 

Quietly replacing the reliable chain with a shonky belt just to save a few quid, turning a tough little engine into a ticking time bomb.

 

There is a chain kit to replace it, but its a real pain to fit and why most people never bothered replacing it at the same time as the cambelt.

2021 Swift Sienna Super 4SB

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 31/12/2021 at 19:42, beejay said:

 

 

 

Why do US cars with the same spec engines as European cars have 3000 mile (or less oil) changes where European cars have up to 20,000 mile between changes?  Whilst there can be huge variations climatic conditions in North America  few people  travel outside their local area any more than Europeans do.

 

Most of them don't have such low oil change intervals, they are like ours, 12 months or XXXXX miles. It just seems drilled into the americans that oil won't last more than 3 weeks, they also believe the filters won't do the distance either.

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Give me a timing chain anyday-even a dry belt with a change regime is better than that! However none of that in our EV-just saying!:D

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I think the wet timing belt was intended to bring the reliability of a chain with the economies of a belt.  However some further development would seem to be required.

I for one would not want such an engine because for me it would be a constant source of worry.    I can't find a list of wet belt engines and would be very wary if I was looking to change cars.

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Is this like years ago when the 1.6DV6 diesel engines as fitted to Citroens & Peugeots & other makes had a reputation for “eating turbos” ? It  turned out though that provided the correct spec oil was changed at the required intervals the turbos would run for the life of the engine 250k miles but if wrong spec oil was used &/or oil change interval missed the turbo would fail in short order. 

 

So can one assume if you have an engine with cam belt as described that provided you take to the main dealer for service at the correct intervals then you will have no problems at all ?

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Ah yes, we all know what “assume” can mean, don’t we??

 

I am another who, out of choice, will always opt for a chain driven camshaft. 

Experience is something you acquire after you have an urgent need for it.

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There are millions of the described vehicles on the road. I am not seeing the highways & byways of this country littered with broken down vehicles. There will always be users who simply refuse to service & maintain their vehicles. For years now I have been buying a new car about every 7yrs. Driving it around 10k miles pa & taking it to main dealer workshop for annual service & I have never had any major failure. 

Edited by Camperdom
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I doubt it. Reading the internet even Ford main dealer workshops appear to be unclear as to which of their engines have wet timing belts. Engine specs change all the time. When you buy the car it my not have the engine you thought it had. 
 

The purpose of wet timing belts is to reduce friction losses & therefore improve fuel consumption. Before this thread I had not even heard of wet timing belts. :D

Edited by Camperdom
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Honest John does a list of belted v chain engines-but not sure if he then differenetiated the belts. 

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6 hours ago, Jezzerb said:

Give me a timing chain anyday-even a dry belt with a change regime is better than that! However none of that in our EV-just saying!:D

Depends what car you buy

 

Lots of manufacturers have issues with chains stretching (BMW, VW, Nissan etc)

 

And one is a lot easier to change than the other !

 

Think we should all change to American V8's with pushrods and geared cams !

2021 Swift Sienna Super 4SB

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We should return to push rods, with the camshaft down in the oily bit, and nice hot oil vapour rising to the rockers. Oh, yes!  Those were the days.

Edited by Ern
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6 hours ago, Camperdom said:

Is this like years ago when the 1.6DV6 diesel engines as fitted to Citroens & Peugeots & other makes had a reputation for “eating turbos” ?

 

The 1.6-DV6 was a Ford designed engine given to  PSA in return for PSA's 2ltr HDI which Ford fitted so successfully in the Mondeo and other models.   The turbo fault in PSA cars became apparent in 2012/13 when Citroen/Peugeot workshops were having to replace on warranty, a large amount of faulty turbos - even ruined engines.   The oil starvation in the turbos was brought about by a tiny strainer fitted into the lower banjo bolt which was quickly becoming blocked.      Initially, Citroen told their workshops to remove the strainer at the first service, but later gave specific instructions on how an oil change should be carried out and also to use a specific oil.  

 

Citroen C5-X7 Tourer+Avondale Rialto 480/2
https://jondogoescaravanning.com

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All v true. Then a belt is far better but stretchy chains are usually cost cutting imo or poor maintenance.

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