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Mainly just posting for others debating whether to do this themselves or let a dealer/independent do the work. I could do this myself if I desired....I've done it before and have the garage space and most tools. However, I was also burned on a DIY timing belt change years ago and that has made me question the logic of DIY for high risk parts. In the prior case, the new OEM tensioner failed a few months after changing which destroyed the top-half of the engine. Manufacturer refused to cover the failed part or damage caused and it just wasn't worth the legal fight. I saved ~$700 DIY and then spent $2,000 in parts and far too much of my spare time rebuilding the top of the motor. If I had paid the dealer for that repair and then it failed, I would have had a much better legal case, but most likely the dealer would have just taken care of it. Plus I value my time more these days so 6 hours in garage plus research plus special tools....not worth it for something that is only needed once every 5 years in my case.

For those comparing prices, my dealer replaced timing belt, tensioner, water pump, coolant, and serpentine belt for $985.
 

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I've stopped short, of changing a timing belt, replacing valve seals, piston rings, and even a clutch/pressure plate & throw out bearing, because I don't want to take the risk.

I've resorted to finding an Acura/Honda mechanic, on Facebook or, in the old days of social media, on local car club forums. These guys accept my parts or will use their employee discount, to get the parts, and charge me a few hundred dollars.
 

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Risk is relative to value of the car. My first tb is done by dealer. Will do the 2nd one myself. I also read that some odyssey failed soon after a dealer tb job and nobody at the dealer wants to be responsible. So it is a balanced decision each one needs to make himself.

For this matter, old Toyota none interference design is much better. No risk at all.


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Discussion Starter #4
Risk is relative to value of the car. My first tb is done by dealer. Will do the 2nd one myself. I also read that some odyssey failed soon after a dealer tb job and nobody at the dealer wants to be responsible. So it is a balanced decision each one needs to make himself.

For this matter, old Toyota none interference design is much better. No risk at all.
Good point on value. If this was a $5k vehicle, $1k is a major investment.

It's also not just Toyota...besides Acura/Honda V6, I can only think of a couple 2017 mainstream vehicles that still use a timing belt. Ford's with the 1.5L and 1.6L turbo engines are the other and they're on a 150k mile recommended interval.
 

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People love to dog Honda for still using timing belts... but I don’t see the big deal. The belts don’t fail if you do the scheduled maintenance. And once every 105k is not a hardship. Belts are also lighter and quieter than chains.

Chains are not zero-maintenance either. I’ve had chains stretch. Also, chain guides go bad all the time — common problem.
 

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For the vast majority of car owners timing chain is super nice. For those who keep their cars over 200k miles, it is not a big deal. A lot of parts related to the belt or chain need to be replaced by that time. Also replacing chain is more expensive than belt.


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Mainly just posting for others debating whether to do this themselves or let a dealer/independent do the work. I could do this myself if I desired....I've done it before and have the garage space and most tools. However, I was also burned on a DIY timing belt change years ago and that has made me question the logic of DIY for high risk parts. In the prior case, the new OEM tensioner failed a few months after changing which destroyed the top-half of the engine. Manufacturer refused to cover the failed part or damage caused and it just wasn't worth the legal fight. I saved ~$700 DIY and then spent $2,000 in parts and far too much of my spare time rebuilding the top of the motor. If I had paid the dealer for that repair and then it failed, I would have had a much better legal case, but most likely the dealer would have just taken care of it. Plus I value my time more these days so 6 hours in garage plus research plus special tools....not worth it for something that is only needed once every 5 years in my case.

For those comparing prices, my dealer replaced timing belt, tensioner, water pump, coolant, and serpentine belt for $985.


If you make good money on your regular job why bother DIY?!? Pay the dealer to get the jobs done.


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If you make good money on your regular job why bother DIY?!? Pay the dealer to get the jobs done.
Not everyone DIYs to be cheap. I've DIY'd some jobs and actually spent MORE than I would have just taking it to a dealer.

DIY allows me to:

  1. Use the parts *I* want to use. For some, this means saving money with less-expensive parts. For me, it means being able to select the part I feel is the BEST.
  2. Learn (About the car, engineering in general, and even myself)
  3. Take the time to ensure the job is done to my satisfaction. I'm not racing a clock like a dealership tech. And I've got skin-in-the-game so I have a vested interest to be careful, not cut corners, and do things properly.
  4. Sometimes I get to buy a cool tool/gadget :)
 

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Mainly just posting for others debating whether to do this themselves or let a dealer/independent do the work. I could do this myself if I desired....I've done it before and have the garage space and most tools. However, I was also burned on a DIY timing belt change years ago and that has made me question the logic of DIY for high risk parts. In the prior case, the new OEM tensioner failed a few months after changing which destroyed the top-half of the engine. Manufacturer refused to cover the failed part or damage caused and it just wasn't worth the legal fight. I saved ~$700 DIY and then spent $2,000 in parts and far too much of my spare time rebuilding the top of the motor. If I had paid the dealer for that repair and then it failed, I would have had a much better legal case, but most likely the dealer would have just taken care of it. Plus I value my time more these days so 6 hours in garage plus research plus special tools....not worth it for something that is only needed once every 5 years in my case.

For those comparing prices, my dealer replaced timing belt, tensioner, water pump, coolant, and serpentine belt for $985.
I changed my own timing belts, water pumps, throw out bearings, piston rings, bearings, etc when I was a poor student. If you have more time than money, then do it yourself. If you have more money than time, then take it to a mechanic. Now that I have graduated, all work is done by my dealer.

I also use to do DIY because I am anal and want to make sure the job is done right.

I am friendly with my dealer, service manager and mechanic. So if I want, I can hang around in the shop and watch them work on my car. Sometimes I supervise if I have the time.
 

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Doing it with the dealership is also not a Guarantee...
For example lets say you are not capable of doing the T-Belt Job so you seek a dealership to be sure but you take Non-OEM PARTS? They wont warranty the work at all. Lets say you buy everything from the dealership? they can still mess up since the technician is going against time to do the T-Belt Job.

So using the dealership? is not a 100% Safe thing to do either.
If you are capable of performing the job? you can triple check everything and take all your sweet time to do it. You will probably do a better job than any performed in a dealership just because you have time to spare.

Now parts failing after installing? Nobody in this planet can assure you a Hydro Tensioner wont fail after installation even if it does under a dealership? You wont be having a very nice time fighting over who will pay for your stuff, it WONT BE Hassle Free for sure.
 

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Planning to do the timing belt on my X when I get back home. I had enough fun time fixing my mom’s 007 TL. It would cost about $3000 at the dealer for all the parts and labor fixing on her car. $335 was the total for parts and fluid for DIY on a busy street in Boston! People were passing by looking at me what are you doing in the freezing temperature (25-30 deg F)


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