When to Replace Your Timing Belt

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If your car has a timing belt, it's important that you inspect it regularly to ensure it's in proper working order. This small part is critical to your engine running properly, and if it breaks the results can be catastrophic.

Your timing belt should be replaced every 50,000–70,000 miles, depending on your car's make and model. Also, make sure you understand if your engine is an interference engine or a non-interference engine.

The valves and piston share the same airspace in an interference engine, and the timing belt keeps them from touching. Which is why if the belt breaks or skips, you'll have a major engine failure on your hands. Fixing it involves removing the head and replacing bent valves—and anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars.

Non-interference engines do not risk this contact if the timing belt goes. Nonetheless, either situation can leave you stranded, so it is important to know the replacement interval for your specific model and have your belt replaced accordingly. You can get a good idea of the timing belt replacement interval for seven common automobiles by checking the charts below. If your car or truck isn't on this list, refer to your owner's or repair manual.

Acura

Acura timing belt info.
Change your timing belt at these intervals. chart

Acuras have one of the longest intervals for timing belt replacement. Most models, like those with 3.2-liter engines, do not need their timing belt replaced until they hit 92,000 miles or after six years, whichever comes first. Others can go as long as 105,000 miles before the belt has to be replaced.

Audi

Audi timing belt information.
Change your timing belt at these intervals. chart

Most Audis have a recommended timing belt replacement at 110,000 miles. But to be on the safe side, many mechanics recommend replacing it earlier, such as around 90,000 miles. Being conservative and opting for an early replacement can protect your car from expensive damage.

Chrysler

Chrysler timing belt info.
Change your timing belt at these intervals.

In general, Chrysler vehicles should have their timing belt replaced at 50,000 miles or after five years, whichever comes first. In newer models, you can just have the belt inspected at 50,000 miles. If it looks to be in good shape, you likely can go as far as 90,000 miles without a replacement.

Ford

Ford timing belt info.
Change your timing belt at these intervals. chart

Ford recommends that you replace the timing belt at 60,000 miles for almost all of its models. The one exception is the Ford Probe. If you have a Probe from 1999-2004, have the timing belt inspected every 120,000.

GM

GM timing belt info.
Change your timing belt at these intervals. chart

Be sure to replace your timing belt at the required intervals for your General Motors vehicle. This chart shows that most engines will run up to about 60,000 miles before their belt needs replacing. For those not listed here, please check your owner's or repair manual.

Honda

Honda timing belt info.
Change your timing belt at these intervals. chart

Hondas can go as much as 105,000 miles before they need the timing belt replaced. However, some models have a shorter recommended interval. Some need to be replaced at 90,000 miles, so, again, check your owner's or repair manual.

Hyundai

Hyundai and Infiniti timing belt info.
Change your timing belt at these intervals. chart

You should replace the timing belt on your Hyundai about every 60,000 miles. If you have a long commute or travel often in extreme weather, you may also have to replace its water pump at the same time. While that can be a costly repair package, preventative maintenance will save you thousands over time.