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  1. #1
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    Fairly new timing belt failure

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    had timing new belt installed on BEL engine with original 70K miles before BEL engine with rebuilt K04's and all stage III bells and whistles was installed in my 01 manual Allroad.
    I drove normally for about 12 thousand since last year when it was done. Yesterday heading home on a highway, engine suddenly cut off, no noises, no any other symptoms at all.
    Towed it to the nearest shop, they do not have much experience with any Audi cars. They called me about an hour ago telling that timing belt is broken, and thy cn replace the belt for about 700.
    My understanding that every time belt brakes under load (as in driving on the highway), chances of head damage in close to 100%
    For now I decided to tow the car to a shop with more Audi experience. Why would timing belt with 12K miles fail?
    I am a bit desperate (not a good time financially and this is my only daily driver), trying not to panic, so any advice is appreciated.

  2. #2
    Veteran Member Three Rings
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    In my experience they fail when a pulley seizes. Where all pulleys and water pump replaced when the job was done? Are you confident in the diagnosis?

  3. #3
    Veteran Member Three Rings VR6Bomber's Avatar
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    Well, When you did the timing belt last year did you replace everything?
    Pulley tensioner, water pump and all that?
    I broken tensioner could certainly ruin a belt or create too much slack to where the belt could jump a tooth or a few.

    In any case, I'd start planning on a new motor.

    Compression test see what cyls come up with zero

  4. #4
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    Pulley and water pump were replaced, purchased the tensioner, but the guy who worked on it, asked me to come to shop, to look at original tensioner, and it looked like new, so he recommended to keep the original.
    I am not confident in the first assessment at all, so car is being towed to a different shop now, and they will be able to insert camera in the cylinders to inspect for any damage, and tell me what really going on.

  5. #5
    Veteran Member Four Rings MacFady's Avatar
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    Is the "different shop" the one that replaced the timing belt and recommended not replacing the tensioner because it "looked new", I'd avoid that place. Good to know the amount of damage yes but as far as the original shop diagnosis, if the belt is broke it's broke.

  6. #6
    Veteran Member Four Rings AudiTechS4's Avatar
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    i installed an ecs tuning timing belt kit (the blue gates one they sell ) and had the dampener fail in 3 weeks . luckily it didn't jump any teeth just made alot of noise . put a factory one in and good ever since .
    If it died its pretty far out of time . are they sure the belt broke ? i've also seen the the roller bolts brake when over torqued .
    2001 Audi S4 Manual - Nogaro Blue/black - Full AWE stg 3 kit w/ manifolds,h&r coilovers,jhm trans rebuild,UUC VM3 exhaust , 2.5" dp's - Needs Love - Got some love now 442awhp and 512 awtq
    2004 Audi S4 Avant manual - Silver/black - 2.7 swapped ,k24's and srm side mounts

  7. #7
    Veteran Member Three Rings VR6Bomber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by V1nny View Post
    and they will be able to insert camera in the cylinders to inspect for any damage, and tell me what really going on.
    You can buy a LED bore cam that connects to your phone for like $20 amazon.

  8. #8
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VR6Bomber View Post
    You can buy a LED bore cam that connects to your phone for like $20 amazon.
    guy in the shop where car is towed has exactly this. He will look at it in about an hour. And my TB kit was from ECS, but I do not think it was made Gates. Should I ask ECS for any warranty?

    this is the kit I got from ECS: https://www.ecstuning.com/b-assemble...ool/078198671/
    but I bought it like 14 monts ago, so if their warranty is just one year, I am screwed even more.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member Three Rings VR6Bomber's Avatar
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    Did anyone compression test it yet?

  10. #10
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    not yet, thy just unloaded allroad from the tow truck. Is it even possible to do compression test with broken timing belt?

  11. #11
    Veteran Member Three Rings
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    Quote Originally Posted by V1nny View Post
    not yet, thy just unloaded allroad from the tow truck. Is it even possible to do compression test with broken timing belt?
    Sorry to hear about the problems.

    No they would need to fix the timing belt first to do it. If its just skipped due to a seized pulley and still in tact in theory they could probably get it timed quickly and cranking it over on the seized pulley wouldn't be too much of a problem to test compression. If it is busted I wouldn't spend money on the time/labor replacing it just to test as there are other means like the camera noted before.


    Camera through the plug hole can be inconclusive too unless you can really see a valve bent or broke or a nick in a piston. Pulling the valve covers can be a quicker test to see if a lifter/spring is not in contact with a cam. Both together pretty good ways to tell.
    80 rabbit pickup, 98 TJ 4bt cummins, 00 180TTQ 6spd, 02 Freelander, 03 Allroad 2.7t 6spd swap now with K04s, 06 A3 2.0T w/GT3071R (2012 JSW TDI and 2015 GSW TDI now in TDI purgatory )

  12. #12
    Veteran Member Three Rings cu52's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by V1nny View Post
    not yet, thy just unloaded allroad from the tow truck. Is it even possible to do compression test with broken timing belt?
    Will probably look something like this:




    Best of luck!
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    Gone:
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  13. #13
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    yeah, that's how it looks, looking for a used engine or long block. Going to call Phil at audis4parts.com tomorrow

  14. #14
    Forum Moderator Four Rings doobiesdaddy's Avatar
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    Bummer
    I had a fairly new timing belt failure on my allroad as well
    I'm in the same position
    New engine....but at least I get to upgrade my original ko3 turbos to ko4s :)
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  15. #15
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by doobiesdaddy View Post
    Bummer
    I had a fairly new timing belt failure on my allroad as well
    I'm in the same position
    New engine....but at least I get to upgrade my original ko3 turbos to ko4s :)
    Did you have Gates belt failed? My was made by Continental.

  16. #16
    Veteran Member Four Rings
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    Belt doesn't just break on its own unless it has a lot of miles on it and it wore down to nothing.

    When it breaks when fairly new, it is due to something it is driving giving it mighty resistance (I broke mine literally in half once when valve spring caused cam to stop dead in it tracks and the belt literally snapped in half) or tensioner giving up and allowing the belt to skip teeth, eventually shred them and then wrap itself around one of the pulleys. It takes seconds because that belt completes RPM/60 revolutions per second (assuming 3000 RPMs then it is 3000/60 = 50 revolutions per second!).

    I've also seen accessory pulley puking damping rubber out of the back and destroying timing belt in the process although it usually takes a good while for this to happen and you get ample warning in the way of crazy noises coming out of that area.

  17. #17
    Forum Moderator Four Rings doobiesdaddy's Avatar
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    Mine was a continental too.
    I heard a rumor around town that there might be a manufacturing defect on some of the Continental belts.
    Until I take out my motor I'm not going to know possible causes.
    Dave - Moderator
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  18. #18
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    Bought 01 engine with 100K and 190+ psi compression from Phil today, they will be shipping from Arizona tomorrow.
    What brand timing belt should I get? Don't trust anymore Gates or Continental.
    Any maintenance work should be done, while engine replaced?
    Last edited by V1nny; 07-11-2018 at 07:59 AM.

  19. #19
    Veteran Member Four Rings MacFady's Avatar
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    So in the end are you blaming this on belt manufacturing or the fact the tensioner was recommended not to be replaced at the time you did all the other work? I'm just saying I think the fact the tensioner wasn't replaced makes it difficult to say there is an inherent issue with Continental belts. Personal experience, 80k on my Continental belt without issue but I did replace all the recommended components.

  20. #20
    Veteran Member Three Rings VR6Bomber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacFady View Post
    So in the end are you blaming this on belt manufacturing or the fact the tensioner was recommended not to be replaced at the time you did all the other work? I'm just saying I think the fact the tensioner wasn't replaced makes it difficult to say there is an inherent issue with Continental belts. Personal experience, 80k on my Continental belt without issue but I did replace all the recommended components.
    ^I'll agree with that.
    From my experience both Conti and Gates have been good to me.

  21. #21
    Veteran Member Four Rings Nollywood's Avatar
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    I’ve always run OEM / Continental timing belts on all my Audi / VW models. They’ve never let me down.
    2003 B6 Audi A4 Avant Quattro Sport | 3.0 V6 | 6MT | Denim Blue Pearl | B6 S4 “Black Optik” Grille | Votex Kit | Black Leather - Part Out.

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  22. #22
    Veteran Member Three Rings
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    What actually failed? Has this been determined?

  23. #23
    Active Member Two Rings
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nollywood View Post
    I’ve always run OEM / Continental timing belts on all my Audi / VW models. They’ve never let me down.
    ^No issues with continental either. Can't speak for gates because I haven't used them.
    05 Allroad tip
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  24. #24
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    I still did not have a chance to take a good look at the failed engine, but spoke to Phil today, and he gave me decent deal installing Gates kit he has in stock before shipping engine to me.

  25. #25
    Veteran Member Three Rings m_haiser's Avatar
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    ive got a full kit with continental belt ready to go on that I bought from fcpeuro. Total faith as long as like was already stated, everything that ought to be, is replaced.

  26. #26
    Veteran Member Four Rings Nollywood's Avatar
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    I have never used a Gates belt on any car I’ve owned. Nothing like OEM, why go aftermarket?

    I’ve never fitted aftermarket idlers, tensioner and water pump either. With any part of the rotating assembly, I would never take any chances, and risk failure.
    2003 B6 Audi A4 Avant Quattro Sport | 3.0 V6 | 6MT | Denim Blue Pearl | B6 S4 “Black Optik” Grille | Votex Kit | Black Leather - Part Out.

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    2002 Toyota Runx |1.4L DOHC 16V Auto.

  27. #27
    Active Member Two Rings JBX's Avatar
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    Vinny, sorry this happened to you. Best of the luck. --jb
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  28. #28
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    Thank you JBX. Anything that does not kill C5, makes it stronger :-) I will post some pictures of failed belt and new engine when it comes. We just do not want to pull it before new engine is delivered. Spoke to Phil today and he told me before shipping they removed heads for carbon cleaning. I am a bit puzzled.. Is it a good thing, or sounds fishy?

  29. #29
    Veteran Member Three Rings m_haiser's Avatar
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    as long as he is going to replace the head gaskets and what not, I think that's awesome. if not however, hes only cost you more money in having to replace the head gaskets

  30. #30
    Veteran Member Three Rings
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    Yeah sounds like they might just do it to cover their ass, inspect it and clean it so you don't have running issues.

  31. #31
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    They did replace head gasket, otherwise I would consider it a short block, not engine. Phil told me that reason they did it, is that after original compression testing they found excessive carbon build up. That sounded a bit suspicious, as this is not a direct injection engine that usually have this problem. So probably someone drove it with boost leak or some fueling problem, or how would they create carbon problem?

  32. #32
    Veteran Member Three Rings m_haiser's Avatar
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    is it carbon or "sludge" from lack of maintenance

  33. #33
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    Finally got to take some pictures of bad TB

    one more:

    everything else looks perfect. Dampener was actually replaced.
    What could cause it? Looking at the belt very closely, I could not find any brand, or numbers, or anything to identify it.

  34. #34
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    Also on a "new" engine one of the timing chain tensioners had cracked plastic. My choices either take tensioners and possibly chain from my old failed engine and transfer to the "new", or I found in my part bin some brand new tensioners, but they are not original:

    do they look suspicious, or should I use them?


    I am pretty sure they chinese from ebay, most likely from this kit:
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Pair-Timing...6/292404029504

  35. #35
    Senior Member Three Rings Wide-66's Avatar
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    Id venture to guess it was not installed properly look at that belt it was dragging on something then got caught and ripped in half.

  36. #36
    Veteran Member Four Rings 8520's Avatar
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    Since I just happened to have received my timing belt kit from FCPEURO today, here is my conti belt.





    Your belt was clearly rubbing on something or was misaligned somehow. Something along the route wasn't right. Timing belts don't just snap on their own.

    Any weird noises before it failed? Whirring or the like?
    -dre

  37. #37
    Veteran Member Three Rings
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    The fraying on the side definitely looks like it was rubbing on something. That could have been a pulley that was having issues that was the root but does seem rubbing was a factor.

    Are the cam caps on the floor the new engine or the old engine? If the old engine was there any sign of cam bearing wear? I have seen cars with sludged/clogged oil galleys that end up seizing up a cam and snap he belt.
    80 rabbit pickup, 98 TJ 4bt cummins, 00 180TTQ 6spd, 02 Freelander, 03 Allroad 2.7t 6spd swap now with K04s, 06 A3 2.0T w/GT3071R (2012 JSW TDI and 2015 GSW TDI now in TDI purgatory )

  38. #38
    Veteran Member Four Rings V1nny's Avatar
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    From the first look my thinking was the same, misaligned first, then broke. But i have someone experienced inspected the engine, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with any other timing components. So alternative explanation is that belt broke first, then ripped the edge rotating partially broken. Only thing I found is 3/4 inch piece of plastic broke off upper timing belt cover. Could the broken off piece of plastic do that damage?

  39. #39
    Registered User Four Rings Scotty@Advanced's Avatar
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    Yes that plastic could have caused the damage, so could over tightening of the belt on install.



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