A Timing Chain Replacement cost in McAllen in 2024

The average cost for a timing chain replacement with CarAdvise is $1197 and the range is generally between $147 and $3145.

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A Timing Chain Replacement costs by shop in McAllen.

CarAdvise Customers save an average of $239 on A Timing Chain Replacement.


Average cost of A Timing Chain Replacement for popular vehicle models in McAllen:

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THE IMPORTANCE OF A Timing Chain Replacement

What is a timing chain and how does it work?

A timing chain is a device inside your engine that serves to synchronize all of the moving parts inside. Like a conductor of an orchestra, the timing belt ensures that all of the components are in the right place at the right time.

The chain itself wraps around sprockets attached to the engine crankshaft and the camshaft(s). As the crankshaft rotates (as a result of being “pedaled” by the pistons), a pulley moves the timing chain. The timing chain, in turn, rotates one or more camshafts to open and close the intake and exhaust valves at just the right moment - in time with ignition.

Some engines feature a toothed timing belt rather than a timing chain. They do the same job, but a chain is more durable than a belt. It is also more expensive to produce, replace, and repair.


How do I know if my engine needs a new timing chain?

The timing chain is an essential component inside your engine. Without it, the valves that open and close to let air and fuel into the cylinders, and the valves that allow exhaust gases to escape, would not work properly. A modern engine can have as many as thirty two valves. The timing chain “times” or synchronizes them all. On many engines, the timing chain is also responsible for driving the oil pump, oil injector, and the water pump. If the timing chain goes bad, a number of problems can result and lead to the following signs:

A drop in oil pressure

Engine overheating

Rough idle or engine misfire

Excess smoke coming from the exhaust

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How does a technician perform A Timing Chain Replacement ?

Timing chain replacement is quite an involved procedure that requires a good deal of tools and training. To replace the timing chain on your vehicle, a technician needs to gain access to the front of the engine. This usually requires safely lifting and supporting the vehicle off of the ground, removing shields, guards, covers, ducts and the serpentine drive belt. The radiator might also need to be removed, depending on the orientation of your engine.

With those items out of the way, a typical timing chain replacement (the procedure differs from one vehicle make and model to the next) involves the following general steps:

  • Remove the water pump (on some models)
  • Detach the drive pulley on the crankshaft
  • Remove any engine accessories (AC compressor, alternator, power steering pump, etc.) that are in the way of the timing belt cover
  • Remove the valve cover(s) (on some models)
  • Unbolt and remove the timing cover from the front of the engine
  • Synchronize the timing marks on the camshaft and crankshaft sprockets and align to top dead center
  • Remove the timing chain tensioner pulley(s)
  • Dislodge the crankshaft sprocket and timing chain
  • Install the new chain, taking care to align to the timing marks
  • Install the timing chain tensioner(s) and set chain tension
  • Reinstall all components and add fluids as necessary This abbreviated list of steps does not account for differences between engines, whether your has single or dual camshafts, the style of tensioners used, and other variables. It is common to replace not only the timing chain, but also the tensioners and even the sprockets on which the chain rides. If your engine has a water pump that is driven by the timing chain, that too will be recommended for replacement. The procedure is similar if your engine has a timing belt rather than a chain. If the procedure is not done properly, your engine could fail to run, run poorly, or suffer severe internal damage.


Will a broken timing chain destroy my engine?
With some engines, the result of a broken timing chain might be stalling or a failure to start. But with others, those known as “interference engines”, the consequences can be far worse. In recent years, vehicle manufacturers have been building engines that are smaller and lighter weight. In order to accomplish this, tolerances are reduced. And, in some cases, multiple components must occupy the same space inside the engine, albeit at different times. For instance, a piston and a valve might enter the same part of the combustion chamber in succession. If the timing chain breaks, those parts would collide at high speeds and cause catastrophic damage.
How long can you drive a car that needs a timing chain?
The amount of time you can drive a vehicle that needs a timing chain is really a roll of the dice. There is no specific predictor or indicator as to when a timing chain might fail other than the manufacturer’s recommendation for routine replacement, usually somewhere between 80K and 120K miles.
Are timing chains easy to replace?
Replacement of a timing chain and its related components is a substantial repair. On some vehicles, it is necessary to remove many components to access the timing chain - the alternator, power steering pump, radiator, water pump, valve cover(s), timing cover, and much more. The procedure must also be followed to the letter to ensure that the chain, camshaft(s), and crankshaft are aligned properly to avoid damage to an engine.

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