Can you tell if the timing belt has been replaced?
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  1. #1
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    Can you tell if the timing belt has been replaced?

    My wife and I both drive Passats, mine is a 99 v6 (100k miles) and hers is a 00 v6 wagon (65k miles). We bought both of these used so I don't have a full maintenance history and I am worried that the timing belts might not have been replaced in either one. The wagon was bought as certified preowned with 49,500 miles from a VW dealer, but mine was bought from a non-VW dealer with 94,000 miles. Is there any way to look and see if the belt has been replaced, or do I have to go and have it done as preventative maintenance?

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  3. #2
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    As far as I know the V6 in passats don't have timing belts they have chains therefore don't require as much maintenance. They should be good for about 200K Miles if not more.

  4. #3
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    not true, I have a 99 V6 and the timing belt (irrelevant of whether belt or chain) is due to be replaced by the books at 105k. Timing belts are very crucial so I can't imagine that they are built to stretch, etc. be cause if they are just marginally off, pistons will start hitting valves at hig speeds and expensive things start to happen. Get it changed at 105k.

  5. #4
    JEM
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    blind leading the blind

  6. #5
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    do you feel lucky, punk.................a mechanic can check the belt but its not a definate,it may have been on for some time and is hard to tell,...you can try and go to a VwoA dealer and ask him to run the vin# and maybe youll get lucky and find out if it was serviced at a VW dealer,otherwise its like russian roullette............anyway you made one good choice by buying one CPO vechicle,....as on the other ,like clint (dirty harry) eastwood said do you feel lucky..also only the VR6 had a chain,.....the V-6 30V 2.8 engine is an (interferance type) lose your belt,lose your valves,pistons,engine$$$$$$ etc.it has a timing belt

  7. #6
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    also would you want to wait and take a chance for another few thousnad miles?,spend a thousnd now or about 4-5000$ later if it goes,dont forget the water pump and related items along with the belt.good luck, i know,i have two passat V-6 ,one w/53,000 the other w/74,000 miles..........accoding to the english/german red lettered sticker in the engine compartment on thenradiator shroud it says"75,000"miles....................go from there

  8. #7
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    I would strongly recommend having the belts and tensioners (timing belt kit)replaced on both cars ASAP. The Bentley manual states the following on the same page as the table for the 1999 Maintenance Schedule.

    EDITOR'S NOTE--
    Publisher's additional recommended maintenance interval:
    *1.8T timing belt and tensioner; inspect every 20K miles,
    replace every 60k miles
    *V6 timing belt and tensioner; inspect every 20K miles,
    replace every 70k miles

    And since the the timing belt drives the water pump, it's highly advisable to replace it as well. When I did my V6, I replaced the thermostat because you have to remove the timing belt to get to it and it was bad in my case.

  9. #8
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    Well, if it breaks within the next 5,000 miles, or tomorrow, then it wasn't replaced.

    No way to tell just by inspection. Maybe see if the 99 has the upgraded tensioner?

    You should have yours done right now. broken belt = serious $.
    Your wife's can go maybe to 75k, being hopefully the newer design tensioner.

    Replace: TB, tensioner, idler bearing, water pump, thermostat, all drive belts. You might also have the valve cover gasket, and cam seals replaced while the other stuff is off the car. Check for oil leaks around the perimeter of the head. Good time to replace the radiator hoses if needed, and use new permanent coolant.

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by vdub18t
    As far as I know the V6 in passats don't have timing belts they have chains therefore don't require as much maintenance. They should be good for about 200K Miles if not more.
    The old B4 Passats had timing chains in the VR6 engine . The B5 and later cars have belts .

  11. #10
    PZ
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    You can pull the upper cam covers and check the belt. You might be able to tell if it has been replaced,but can not be certain unless it was done recently. A year old belt will look nearly the same as a 5 yr old belt. I would go ahead and change it to be safe.

  12. #11
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    Thanks for the replies, looks like I'll go with preventative maintenance.

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by cooter8
    Thanks for the replies, looks like I'll go with preventative maintenance.
    Get out your checkbook (and wallet for good measure)! Just in case you haven't been forewarned, timing belt replacement on a B5 is NOT cheap. If you're mechanically inclined, you might consider doing it yourself. Otherwise, maybe your mechanic can at least give you a volume discount for doing both cars!

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