Why do you need to find a timing belt kit instead of just buying the belt by itself? I’m glad you asked because the very important answers will affect people that are getting the operation performed by professional mechanics as well as those that plan on doing the repairs in the driveway at home.
The first thing to cover is what the difference is between a timing belt and a complete kit. On some vehicles there is a huge difference between the two. This is mainly because on some models the water pump is driven via the timing belt.
Since maintenance is usually recommended somewhere between 60,000 and 100,000 miles it only makes sense to replace this water pump at the same time as replacing the drive belt. Because we don’t want coolant dripping on the new rubber parts a week later! Some timing belt kits come with a lot of other stuff besides a water pump and belt.
On the Toyota V6 that can be found in the Camry and 4-Runner a complete kit will include new cam seals, thermostat, serpentine belt as well as an idler pulley and tensioner. Both of these items have bearings that can eventually wear out and cause noise or other problems if the bearings seize and destroy the newer belt.
Just like in the case of the water pump while you’re down there it’s just a matter of a few bolts and the items can be renewed at the same time as the belt maintenance. Some timing belt kits also include other items that are known to go bad with specific models.
Timing belts need to be replaced because they are made of rubber in most vehicles. Things that are made of rubber get weak and deteriorate over time. Whether it’s a serpentine drive belt rotating the alternator or the rubber tires on the car, these things will need to be maintained and replaced over time.
If it is time for your timing belt to be inspected/replaced give us a call anytime 619-562-3933! Let our certified technicians put your mind at ease!