A broken timing chain or belt could result in a damaged timing cover. This happens when one or more of the components inside that cover fail, and lash out against the inside of it. The reason why that would be bad is because those timing components need to be kept free of dust and debris. Additionally, if the timing belt or timing chain cover even develops a crack, it could get much worse and start to chip into fragments. This could disrupt the synchronous timing of the camshaft and crankshaft; resulting in poor engine performance and terrible fuel economy. And that's if they fall inside the timing cover. If they fall out and hit one of the drive belts, you could lose the functionality of one ore more of your accessories like the power steering pump, alternator, A/C compressor, etc. In short, any damage to the cover could spell disaster if it goes unattended for too long.
The switch from flat-head engines to overhead valve engines in the 1930s brought engineers the need to synchronize the camshaft and crankshaft via a chain. The chain would link the gears on both shafts, and remain oiled so that it could be properly lubricated at all times. A metal timing chain cover would be added to the front of the engine block so that no dirt or debris would foul up the lubricant on the chain. It also separated the chain from other components like the drive belts and hoses. Later, the timing chain was replaced with a timing belt, but the timing cover still remained. Though it would now be made of plastic. And while today's engines are ever more complicated, these covers are now built to integrate the oil pump, water pump, and other components as well; making its integrity ever more important.
Accessing your timing belt or timing chain cover is difficult, and will be easiest with the engine lifted out of the engine bay. Some mechanics will find it possible to access it if the front bumper cover and radiator are removed. However, this is not always possible. But once all the engine's accessories have been removed, the timing cover should be exposed and will be ready for removal. Remember to use new gaskets when you replace your cover.
Car Parts Discount recognizes the importance of using only the best parts when rebuilding or repairing your engine. That means everything from internals and moving parts, to hoses and timing covers. And when it comes to timing covers, CPD offers quality reproductions as well as genuine original equipment. No matter which you choose, we can get you the parts you order in a matter of days. Your downtime and repair costs will be greatly reduced when you buy from our website today.