105k Timing Belt Interval-Reasonsable?

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1,550
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MD
We have a 1999 VW Passat with about 81k Miles. We had the car in to the the dealer for some warranty work last month, and in passing the dealer recommended a timing belt change. I asked and independent garage about changing the belt today--to see what their price would be-and was told that the recommended interval was 105k. That seems a little long to me, but I don't really know with this car. I don't have enough experience.
 
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5,573
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earth
Wow - long warranty... If you follow the owners manual, what does that say? While under warranty I would not worry about it. up to what mileage are you covered? On the other hand, you are going to pay for it now or at 105k. I couldn't hurt doing it between now and the recommended interval. FWIW i know hyundai's down here have a 150,000 km timing belt change, thats a bit less than 100k miles.
 

ET16

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1,550
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MD
 Originally Posted By: crinkles
Wow - long warranty... If you follow the owners manual, what does that say? While under warranty I would not worry about it. up to what mileage are you covered? On the other hand, you are going to pay for it now or at 105k. I couldn't hurt doing it between now and the recommended interval. FWIW i know hyundai's down here have a 150,000 km timing belt change, thats a bit less than 100k miles.
The power-train warranty is in effect for another two months or so. It's ten years or 100,000 miles. It's been great. Too bad they don't offer it anymore.
 
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Easton, PA
newer belts are kevlar reinforced. I know that the 3.5 in the chrysler 300M had a 105K interval, and the saturn L300 3.0 had a 100K interval, IIRC. reports were that the belts would still look good that old. OTOH, any engine that rec a 60K, you BETTER stick to it. the Passat/A4 1.8T WILL break a belt soon after 60K. I don't know if that is what you have.
 
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4,998
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Milwaukee, WI
105,000 miles isn't a problem, but the time might be. I guess I'd start looking at getting it done, as it will have to be done eventually anyway. My parents have a Camry, non interference. I think it was at 180,000 miles but only 6~7 years old when it went. Parking lot of a pizza place when starting it after eating. You don't get to choose where it breaks/skips.
 
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127
Location
Massachusetts
When I changed the belt at 110K on my 2001 Forester (105K recommended interval, interference engine), the belt was in great shape. I don't think Subaru, or any other car maker, would be recommending a 105K interval if their belts were commonly failing before then. Many on Subaru forums reported similar experience and none that I recall said their belt failed early.
 

PT1

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5,746
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near the mistake
105k is not out of the question. My last CRV was 105k and the Toyotas were 90k. I would double check the manual and follow accordingly. Nothing to lose sleep over as the manufacturers are pretty conservative on their estimates.
 
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275
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Californ I/A
Uhm... Got news for you.. If the manufacturer says 105K miles is recommended and it breaks BEFORE then, tough luck.. its NOT covered as it is a wear item and should be inspected. Belt wear is highly dependent on how you drive, where you drive, temperature of climate and engine in general ( hot running engine?) Automatic or stick? Automatics tend to be gentler on the belt etc... Any worries, I would change it, especially if its an interference engine. As far as the manufacturer being conservative with their maintenance requirements, you couldn't be further from the truth. The last thing a manufacturer wants it's customers to think is that the car is going to cost them a lot insofar as maintenance. Most have gone away from belts altogether. The customers got might nasty about the expense of always having to change the belt. On the other hand, today's belts are excellent and the rib on most of them has been changed to a more rounded one as opposed to squared off blocks which frequently broke off edges and lead to jumped belts. I agree though on the tensioner... Change it for sure!
 

hal

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393
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NC
just do what the manual says for maintenance, but change the tensioner too. not sure about VW's but on most Japanese cars you can do the water pump every other time.
 
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1,335
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Arizona
Stick to the OEM interval. I have seen many cars go twice the recommended interval, but with all things if you push it things are apt to break. That being said, I think 81K is too soon. If it was somewhere extremely hot, like here in phoenix I would say an early change would be warranted. You are in a fairly cool climate so that should provide some more life. My mothers acura TL just had a timing belt replaced at 126K. Looked great. Lived its whole life in the desert with short trips.
 
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23,591
Water pump, belt tensioner, idle roller, and thermostat are part of the proper timing belt replacement procedure on a VW. The belt does not have to break in order to make the piston kiss the valves. That will happen if the belt just skips a few teeth, for example when the WP or the tensioner go bad.
 
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11,150
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Florida, Cape Coral
I changed out my Subaru TB at ~110,000 miles and it looked like new at 7 years. I'd just follow the owners manual as to when to change. Sometimes dealers have a different agenda and will try to get one to change for all sorts of reasons to make money.
 
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7,550
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North Alabama
 Originally Posted By: moribundman
Water pump, belt tensioner, idle roller, and thermostat are part of the proper timing belt replacement procedure on a VW. The belt does not have to break in order to make the piston kiss the valves. That will happen if the belt just skips a few teeth, for example when the WP or the tensioner go bad.
I would go ahead and replace the belt, and all the other items mori mentions above. I did a complete timing belt job on my '00 GTI 1.8T at 90k miles. The timing belt looked fine, but the water pump was on it's last legs. The plastic impellers crumbled in my hands from very little pressure. I recommend getting a water pump with metal impellers.
 
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5,665
Location
North Texas
 Originally Posted By: ET16
We have a 1999 VW Passat with about 81k Miles. We had the car in to the the dealer for some warranty work last month, and in passing the dealer recommended a timing belt change. I asked and independent garage about changing the belt today--to see what their price would be-and was told that the recommended interval was 105k. That seems a little long to me, but I don't really know with this car. I don't have enough experience.
If its easy to pop the cover off take a peak at the belt. I did that on my Tacoma and it still looks brand new. 90K is recommended but im holding out till 120K.
 
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468
Location
new Jersey
I have a 99 Passat and I had the timing belt changed at 80K miles . VW has changed their recommendation to 80K and they also state time and or mileage whichever comes first . Timing belts deteriorate with age even if few miles are put on the car . Get all belts , water pump and thermostat done .
 
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