Car Guides

Does my car have a timing chain or a timing belt?

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The dealership said that I needed to replace the timing belt, but my local shop said that I have a timing chain, not a belt. Who should I listen to?

Q. I recently took my 2003 Honda to the dealership for a recall service, and while I was there, the advisor suggested that I replace the timing belt for $700. I then took my car to my local shop, and they said my car has a timing chain, not a belt. Who should I listen to in this situation?

A. If your Honda has the four-cylinder engine, it uses a timing chain, which should last the lifespan of the car. If your Honda has a six-cylinder engine, it uses a timing belt, which should be replaced at 105,000 miles. If your car’s engine does indeed use a timing belt, failing to replace it could result in engine damage.

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John Paul is AAA Northeast’s Car Doctor. He has over 40 years of experience in the automotive business and is an ASE certified master technician. Email your car question to [email protected].