Author Topic: timing chain - again  (Read 448 times)

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Offline 6User

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  • Colour: True Red (A4A) Metallic
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  • Year: 2011
timing chain - again
« on: January 22, 2021, 11:53:24 am »
The timing chain on my 59 2.2 Diesel was replaced under warranty at about 30,000 miles many years ago.  Its now done 155000 trouble free miles but the crankshaft timing sensor has gone off and the chain rattles so I think its time for another one.  I'm a bit wary of spending too much money on a car that has done 155,000 miles though.  The car is in a good state of repair and most of those miles have been done on a motorway cruising at 70 with very little stop start motoring as in cities.  My question really is at that mileage will I shortly be getting some shocks with other parts of the car shutting down, do I go ahead and repair or cut my losses and run.  I do still like the car, it still pulls well with good emissions and its solid on corners but I'm not the main driver now. 

Offline apav

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Re: timing chain - again
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2021, 06:00:52 am »
If you do the job in an independent garage, it should become more affordable.

I have the impression that the chain needed replacement much earlier that these 125k miles as most users report that they did not catch it by ear but by measuring the angle with the diagnostics.

So if you can afford the work to get the car back on the road, you may get lucky and extend it for another 125k miles.

Because you already know the car, the forthcoming maintenance will not be as extreme as buying blindly another car. My guess is that the timing job will cost less than buying another car. Second generation cars on auto trader are around £1k and most of them need a new engine. Check how much auto trader values your car for a private sale.

You could potentially pay £2k and buy one with no work needed but work will always come to you. So in the game of not paying something like £1k to fix your car now, but trying to sell it for £1k and then paying the £1k to buy another, is a bit too risky because you do not know what is going on with the other car.

I am in a similar position but on the worse side. I did the safety recalls. The dealer damaged the airbags, seat and hatch. The airbag light is on, the seat is loose and the hatch leaks. The MOT does check for leaks and the seat must come off the rail before you fail, but the airbag warning is a problem.

No garage can fix it and no other dealer wants to get involved. The dealer I used does not use the Consumer Rights Act to offer inspection and repair. So it turns out that I either follow the DVSA guidance and remove the warning LED or find a way to make the dealer follow the law.

I am left with a car with no MOT but still paying insurance and tax without being able to drive it. And I am having the same thoughts as you as the car will need maintenance. The dealer proved that these cars are not worthy, but at the same time I cannot justify scrapping a running car.

I think you have similar options to me:

1. Scrap the car
2. Sell the car privately
3. Fix it

Removing the LED warning is not really a fix for me and so I cannot come to terms with it. Then trying to sell a car privately, I think it is a bit crazy business nowadays.

I checked how much I need to pay to buy a franchise car up to 7 years old. They cost £3.5K plus to buy a small car. I need to do work on the brakes and tyres, making a potential £500 bill for the MOT. Then I need to do the timing belt which can easily make another £500 bill.

So I take this off the £3500 for another car and I am left with £2500 in damages. Still I cannot justify it. I will save on fuel but as the safety recalls proved, cars nowadays last only for the duration of the warranty. I can easily lose another £3500 very quickly.

This complicates the thinking of when you time the car replacement. You have a car that does not drive anymore. The repair will cost a lot but the current car market is a bubble. You will overpay to buy another car. The depreciation will turn out to be more than the repair bill even if the car only lasts another year or two.

As your car was not giving you any trouble so far, I would be inclined to repair it. All sorts of things can go wrong here and end up paying for a repair and never fix the car, e.g. what happened with the safety recalls to my car.

But whatever you pay now, divide it by the years of ownership and in that way you balance out the cost of the repair. For example this is my 6th year of ownership. If I pay £500 to do an MOT, it turns out less than £100 per year and there is no way I will need to pay £500 each year for MOT. The same goes for the timing belt.

Usually with the repairs is whether the car was giving you troubles, and how much the repair could cost vs the cost of another car. As cars now became expensive, repairs are easier to justify if you have a solid car.

I would not worry too much about future repairs as the car is mainly used on the motorway and so there is very little damage to be done to it.

I would consider the £150 that auto trader suggests as part exchange for my car, and then add the timing job cost and consider that as the value of the car. So I would fix it and have a car which costs as much as the timing job. How much is that? £1k? Then check what you can buy with £1k on auto trader and I think it will be clear that you should fix the car.

You will have a mobile car again and you can easily sell it for £500-£1000 any time you want as this is the lowest price on auto trader. So if you have another big bill in the future, you can get rid of it then.

I always get sentimental and fix it but you may decide based on the money.