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General VW Discussion This is a place for General VW topics (the company, not your vehicle). General topics about a specific vehicle should be posted in the General TDI Dicussion Forum sections for that vehicle platform. A4, A3 & B4, B5, etc.

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Old January 30th, 2018, 06:50   #1
YellowSpoon
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Default Timing belt: Mean time to failure

With at 2002 Golf TDI, it's been 60k miles since I last change the timing belt. It would cost as much to put in a new timing belt as the car is worth. I'm considering just driving it until the belt fails and have it towed to the scrap yard.

Now, they recommend new belts every 60k miles, but the average time to failure must be higher. So ... If I roll the dice, how much longer can I expect the car to run without changing the timing belt?
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Old January 30th, 2018, 06:55   #2
Windex
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The answer to your question depends on environmental factors, number of miles per year, driving style etc.

I've seen timing belts fail at 6 years on an ALH, and have seen others at ten years (low miles) with the same belt. I would say that both of those are outliers.

I would peg the average estimated danger zone for an aged belt at 7-8 years, but anything after 5 you are rolling the dice.

If you learn the procedure, and fabricate some inexpensive tools, one can do an ALH belt for not much more than the cost of parts....
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Old January 30th, 2018, 07:28   #3
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Why not just sell the car now while it is still running and give someone else a chance with it? You can move on to whatever you want next. Why drive it till it is ruined and no good for anyone? A 2002 Golf TDI should have some good interest in it if it is in any kind of decent condition. Surely you could find a buyer for $800 or so. Or is the general condition so bad no one would want it? Auto or manual trans? Are you near Texas?
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Old January 30th, 2018, 08:30   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightflyer1 View Post
Why not just sell the car now while it is still running and give someone else a chance with it? You can move on to whatever you want next. Why drive it till it is ruined and no good for anyone? A 2002 Golf TDI should have some good interest in it if it is in any kind of decent condition. Surely you could find a buyer for $800 or so. Or is the general condition so bad no one would want it? Auto or manual trans? Are you near Texas?

This. 100x this.

Seriously, don't ruin a good car.
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Old January 30th, 2018, 13:13   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YellowSpoon View Post
it's been 60k miles since I last change the timing belt.
It really depends on what you put in it and when. Most replacement kits were designated to go 100k miles. Heck, your 02 from the factory was an 80k kit.
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Old February 6th, 2018, 17:17   #6
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This. 100x this.
Seriously, don't ruin a good car.
And if the body is shot, which if it were in my part of the world it would be at 16 years of age, the engine is still worth something in running order. It would make a great donor to a gasser with lower mileage and in better shape.
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Old February 6th, 2018, 17:32   #7
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Save the ALH.
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Old February 9th, 2018, 07:58   #8
CasaEd
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Any timing belt should be changed at 5 years regardless of mileage,
and it's a cheaper option than a possible engine rebuild as a result of a broken belt.
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Old February 9th, 2018, 09:42   #9
James & Son
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Originally Posted by CasaEd View Post
Any timing belt should be changed at 5 years regardless of mileage,
and it's a cheaper option than a possible engine rebuild as a result of a broken belt.
I think heat would deteriorate a timing belt. So being in southern Ontario, I am counting on less heat stress.

It is likely I will have 105000 miles and 6 to 7 years on the belt by June of this year when I will have time to change it.

It will be the second diesel geek kit. Hope I make it.
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Old February 15th, 2018, 11:54   #10
Nevada_TDI
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I also hope the belt makes it;:there once was a commercial here in the lower 49 it was about oil filters, but the gist was "pay me now, or pay me later." The $300.00 USD the belt kits cost are a lot cheaper than doing the belt AND the head too, by waiting too long.
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Old February 18th, 2018, 06:32   #11
vincej
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I've changed a few belts on those little Fiat convertible sports cars with the 1850 DOHC. When the head came back from repair I would put it and a new belt on and the shop would sell the car complete with a new paint job to the next happy customer.

I hope I won't get into the same situation with my 2013 TDI that has over 155000 kms on it now.

Last edited by vincej; February 18th, 2018 at 06:36.
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Old February 18th, 2018, 07:29   #12
whitedog
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Save the ALH.
Put that on a T-shirt and sell it!

In other news, I wonder what the OP decided.
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Old February 18th, 2018, 19:17   #13
hskrdu
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Put that on a T-shirt and sell it!

In other news, I wonder what the OP decided.
If we had Club T-shirts with that slogan, I'd buy one!
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Old February 18th, 2018, 19:30   #14
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Originally Posted by hskrdu View Post
If we had Club T-shirts with that slogan, I'd buy one!
It would need a picture to go with it. What do you suggest?

(Yes, I'm hijacking this thread because it appears the OP dropped in and left)
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