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  1. #1
    jimbobery's Avatar
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    Cambelt, should it be changed

    Hi,
    got a quote for a cambelt change (with rollers, w/pump and aux belt) for Ł440 Inc vat as I thought it was time to change it.

    I've checked my history and it was done at 48k in Aug 06, I'm now on 89k. So is it pointless to change it after 41k and 3.5 years?

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  3. #2
    jojo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deece View Post
    Hi,
    got a quote for a cambelt change (with rollers, w/pump and aux belt) for Ł440 Inc vat as I thought it was time to change it.

    I've checked my history and it was done at 48k in Aug 06, I'm now on 89k. So is it pointless to change it after 41k and 3.5 years?
    ASN recommends Cambelt change every 5 years or 50k miles, whichever comes first. So I'd wait another 9k miles before getting it done personally. Do you have any sign that the waterpump was changed during the first cambelt change? That would be the part I'd worry about failing if you haven't.

    Also, Ł440 is quite expensive for the job, is that a dealer price? A local independant specialist should be able to do the job for around Ł350 all in including the waterpump.


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  4. #3
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    One thing I would add is that while the 'typical' cambelt change includes rollers the tensioner damper rarely gets changed at all and I have seen these fail quite often... this is just as bad as a cambelt failure as it will cause the cambelt to jump putting the timing out and at worse you end up with a head full of bent valves and a very large bill.... they aren't expensive (30 or 40 quid IIRC) and personally while everyone bangs on about changing the water pump during a cambelt change because of the possibility of failure I would be more concerned if the tensioner damper wasn't changed as well...

    Typical kit (as bought from VAG) includes a cambelt, tensioner roller and a tensioner damper roller... you normally have to buy the water pump on top as an exchange unit...

    If you go ahead with the cambelt change (and its a worthwhile thing to do for peace of mind) I would ask for the tensioner damper to be done too... A friend of mine has a 2001 S3 and the dealer insisted he didn't need the cambelt done each time he was in for a service or to get other work done... at 96k he had a failure which resulted in all the valves being best and required a new head and valves plus labour to fit... as it turns out it wasn't the belt that went, it was the damper as they (an Audi dealer) fitted the new head but shortly after driving the car away there was a mettalic rattle which was the tensioner roller bouncing off the now defunct damper... they hadn't even changed it when it was obvious the original cam belt hadn't snapped!!!

    Get it done

    <tuffty/>
    Silver 2001 AMK S3. Silver alcantara interior... now with added powarrrrrrrr, torques. VAGCOM + KII-USB. >> My build thread...

  5. #4
    martin g's Avatar
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    Yup, had my belt done recently and tensioner was in very bad condition, had it replaced, some mechanics may have overlooked that, isnt worth the risk. I dont think Ł450 is a bad price for all that, save Ł50 maybe down "Jacks Spanners" and if the belt pings no comeback? its worth Ł50

  6. #5
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    mine cost Ł236 from my local vag specialist. belts, tensioners and water pump. Your quote is almost double! have a look around mate

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  7. #6
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    considering the timing belt kit is Ł106 by itself from eurocarparts, then you have to add the pump, the other belt, other tensioner and other rollers
    ContiTech Timing Belt Kit

    Part Number: 348770525
    Ł106.93

    i doubt they did the whole lot, incl labout for Ł230something

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    i think deece's price seems about right, provided they used brand name parts

  9. #8
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    I concur... its an arse of a job on an S3, that alloy engine mount is work of the devil...

    I am sure that VAG techs have got it down to an art by now but the couple I have done have always been entertaining... I would imagine this is reflected in the price as labour...

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  10. #9
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    Audi charge Ł349 for the cambelt according to there website but doesnt say what this covers interms of parts.

    TT shop charge Ł299 for cambelt, tensioning roller, relay roller and metal impeller waterpump, they inspect the tensioning damper and if it requires changing they charge Ł86.63 (assume this is the part price) and recommend changing the aux belt which is an additional Ł34.37 so Ł420 all in (all OE parts). Jabba sport charge Ł405 for cambelt pump and damper.

  11. #10
    Welly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tufftybloke View Post
    I concur... its an arse of a job on an S3, that alloy engine mount is work of the devil...
    The mount isn't so bad, it's the back bolt of the three which is a ***** to get to and tighten/slacken, and actually getting the mount out thats the problem!

    I cheat and undo the gearbox mount so you can shift the engine over a bit. Makes the job loads easier.

    Still not much fun though....
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  12. #11
    jojo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tufftybloke View Post

    Typical kit (as bought from VAG) includes a cambelt, tensioner roller and a tensioner damper roller... you normally have to buy the water pump on top as an exchange unit...
    I've never bought a cambelt kit for VAG 1.8T that didn't come with the tensioner and additional roller bearing thing, I always get 'Gates' cambelt kits, as they make the OEM cambelts, but buying it aftermarket means they don't have the VW/Audi logos stamped on the belt. The waterpumps are under Ł25 to buy, kind of stupid not to replace this part whilst everything is off, never been offered exchange on this part though?


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  13. #12
    jimbobery's Avatar
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    Cheers for the responses.

    Even though I could leave it a bit longer I'm getting the feeling I should do it soon, even just for peace of mind, and I've got the money to do it at the moment, but I don't have the money for a cambelt failure!

    The Ł440 quote includes cambelt, cambelt roller and tensioner, water pump, coolant and aux belt, so I dont think the tensioner damper would be included but I'd definately get it done.

    The quote is from APS (autops.co.uk), I've not used them before but I've only heard good things. Their quote is quite similar to The TT Shop then (only Ł20 difference) who I have used before and can recommend, but they are a bit of a trek for me to get to.

    Waiting for Audi Northampton to come back with a quote so I can compare, and I'll find out what their Ł349 cambelt change actually includes (not much I'm guessing)...

  14. #13
    jimbobery's Avatar
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    Parts on my quote comes to Ł182 (cambelt, cambelt roller and tensioner, water pump, coolant and aux belt), that doesn't sound too bad if the basic cambelt kit is Ł106 from eurocarparts

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    the complete cambelt kit from ECP is Ł106, all rollers and tensioners for the cambelt

    after that youd need the aux belt/tensioner/rollers too and water

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    Quote Originally Posted by deece View Post
    Cheers for the responses.

    Even though I could leave it a bit longer I'm getting the feeling I should do it soon, even just for peace of mind, and I've got the money to do it at the moment, but I don't have the money for a cambelt failure!

    The Ł440 quote includes cambelt, cambelt roller and tensioner, water pump, coolant and aux belt, so I dont think the tensioner damper would be included but I'd definately get it done.

    The quote is from APS (autops.co.uk), I've not used them before but I've only heard good things. Their quote is quite similar to The TT Shop then (only Ł20 difference) who I have used before and can recommend, but they are a bit of a trek for me to get to.

    Waiting for Audi Northampton to come back with a quote so I can compare, and I'll find out what their Ł349 cambelt change actually includes (not much I'm guessing)...
    As the price doesnt include the damper and is Ł20 more doesnt that make the trek to TTS worth while? Best thing to do is go back to APS and tell them the price TTS are doing it for and do the same with Audi Northampton too if they want your money they should try to match it, How far from Northampton are you as TTS is only 20-30 mins from there.

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    for reference, the tensioner damper on my S4 was 114k miles old (or 115k... cant remember) it wasnt doing much tensioning at all when i took it off

  18. #17
    <tuffty/>'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jojo View Post
    I've never bought a cambelt kit for VAG 1.8T that didn't come with the tensioner and additional roller bearing thing, I always get 'Gates' cambelt kits, as they make the OEM cambelts, but buying it aftermarket means they don't have the VW/Audi logos stamped on the belt. The waterpumps are under Ł25 to buy, kind of stupid not to replace this part whilst everything is off, never been offered exchange on this part though?
    Just to clarify things... the tensioner itself is a big roller held on with a 8mm allen bolt..


    The tensioner damper is this bit...


    All the kits I have seen from Audi or TPS come with belt, tensioner and the silver roller for the damper (see above) Water pumps from VAG are exchange and none of the kits I have seen or used (from VAG or GSF, the only suppliers I have delt with) come with the damper or the pump...

    Audi dealers will only supply and fit the aforementioned parts plus a water pump (typically though not always) and no car I have worked on that has had a VAG fitted kit has had the damper changed...

    This IMO is a serious omission even more so than the water pump... and while on the subject of water pumps I am not a subscriber to the 'must have metal impeller' theory as on the few cars I have seen fitted with metal impeller pumps, all leak from the pump shaft... prematurely.... granted plastic ones have broken and I have seen those but typically only on cars that didn't get them changed at the same interval as the cam belt... VAG only seem to supply plastic impellers now and tbh the 1.8t has been around long enough now for them to have got it more or less right by now...

    So, in summary.. (phew) if you are due a cambelt change, make sure both the water pump and tensioner damper get replaced as well and don't get too hung up on metal impellers either...

    My tuppence...

    <tuffty/>
    Silver 2001 AMK S3. Silver alcantara interior... now with added powarrrrrrrr, torques. VAGCOM + KII-USB. >> My build thread...

  19. #18
    jojo's Avatar
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    I got a tension damper with my kit, so I got that changed thankfully.


    99' Audi S3(APY) - Brilliant Black Click>>>Going Sideways vid!
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  20. #19
    <tuffty/>'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jojo View Post
    I got a tension damper with my kit, so I got that changed thankfully.


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    that clarifies nothing. these things have various names but..
    "the tensioner itself is a big roller held on with a 8mm allen bolt.."


    thats not true. thats just another roller. the tensioner roller. to tension, a verb, that thing does not tension.




    Quote Originally Posted by tufftybloke View Post
    Just to clarify things... the tensioner itself is a big roller held on with a 8mm allen bolt..


    The tensioner damper is this bit...


    All the kits I have seen from Audi or TPS come with belt, tensioner and the silver roller for the damper (see above) Water pumps from VAG are exchange and none of the kits I have seen or used (from VAG or GSF, the only suppliers I have delt with) come with the damper or the pump...

    Audi dealers will only supply and fit the aforementioned parts plus a water pump (typically though not always) and no car I have worked on that has had a VAG fitted kit has had the damper changed...

    This IMO is a serious omission even more so than the water pump... and while on the subject of water pumps I am not a subscriber to the 'must have metal impeller' theory as on the few cars I have seen fitted with metal impeller pumps, all leak from the pump shaft... prematurely.... granted plastic ones have broken and I have seen those but typically only on cars that didn't get them changed at the same interval as the cam belt... VAG only seem to supply plastic impellers now and tbh the 1.8t has been around long enough now for them to have got it more or less right by now...

    So, in summary.. (phew) if you are due a cambelt change, make sure both the water pump and tensioner damper get replaced as well and don't get too hung up on metal impellers either...

    My tuppence...

    <tuffty/>

  22. #21
    <tuffty/>'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt82 View Post
    that clarifies nothing. these things have various names but..
    "the tensioner itself is a big roller held on with a 8mm allen bolt.."


    thats not true. thats just another roller. the tensioner roller. to tension, a verb, that thing does not tension.
    Whats your point?

    <tuffty/>
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  23. #22
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    Ok... so there is no ambiguity I will clarify my clarification....

    In ALL cambelt kits I have had experience of from VAG/TPS/GSF (as these are the places I have dealt with) and anybody or any car I have had dealings with that has had a 'kit' fitted at a dealer, when they reference a 'tensioner' within the kit it refers to the large tensioning roller..


    None of these 'kits' or dealer cambelt changes I have had experience of come with a tensioner damper...


    ...only the roller for the tensioner damper...

    There is a kit sat on a shelf at Badger 5 ordered direct from VAG and is a genuine VAG cambelt kit... this does not come with a damper just the damper roller...

    The damper and the large tensioner roller together form the tensioner for a 1.8t cam belt...

    Make sure when you have yours done it includes both the large tensioner roller and the tensioner damper as the damper is prone to failure...

    Hope thats a bit clearer....

    <tuffty/>
    Silver 2001 AMK S3. Silver alcantara interior... now with added powarrrrrrrr, torques. VAGCOM + KII-USB. >> My build thread...

  24. #23
    jimbobery's Avatar
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    Audi are also 440 for cambelt including aux belt and water pump. The 349 deal doesn't include aux belt and water pump. I need an oil service and a haldex oil and filter change too and Audi have quoted ok for this too.
    I've gone for Audi, they pickup and drop off my car and they've given me something nice to drive when I've used them before. TT shop isn't too bad to get to except there isn't a decent main road there, APS is a trip down the a43, but with either one I need a half day off work at least.

    I know the benefits of independents but Audi is convenient and they haven't let me down (yet).

    This tensioner damper then, I think I'd best give Audi a call back and get them to do this too!

  25. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by deece View Post
    Audi are also 440 for cambelt including aux belt and water pump. The 349 deal doesn't include aux belt and water pump. I need an oil service and a haldex oil and filter change too and Audi have quoted ok for this too.
    I've gone for Audi, they pickup and drop off my car and they've given me something nice to drive when I've used them before. TT shop isn't too bad to get to except there isn't a decent main road there, APS is a trip down the a43, but with either one I need a half day off work at least.

    I know the benefits of independents but Audi is convenient and they haven't let me down (yet).

    This tensioner damper then, I think I'd best give Audi a call back and get them to do this too!
    I can definitely rate APS for the quality of the work and customer care. They did my Cam belt service ~18 months ago, plus my clutch replacement in September. Excellent service, and Ed even game me a lift home and picked me up later on (in an RS4 no less!!) while the car had it's clutch and slave cylinder work done.

    Cheers,
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  26. #25
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    id say the tensioner damper is a must. the S4 has almost exactly the same thing bolted to its block. when i took mine off it really wasnt tensioning much at all and it had only been on the car for 114k miles. that thing keeps it all in check

    if that belt goes slack then it can end up skipping teeth

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    and FYI, the tensioner damper that came in the Conti kit that i bought was made by NTN (a top component brand) so no quibbles about putting that on my car

  28. #27
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    No major roads to TTS? M1 to J13 then A421 from Northampton or A428 and take the new Bedford western bypass round to Kempston.

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    [QUOTE=tufftybloke;961279]There is a kit sat on a shelf at Badger 5 ordered direct from VAG and is a genuine VAG cambelt kit... this does not come with a damper just the damper roller...[QUOTE]

    does bill do cambelts?
    looking to get mine done soon, mainly for peace of mind and am looking for someone who knows their stuff but wont charge audi prices?

 

 

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