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Timing Belt Broke - Repair / Scrap?


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#1 SEP555

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 07:52 PM

Got a 02 1.6 zetec focus 92k that packed up the other day, doing 70 on m/way and it just stopped, no bang just glided to a stop on the hardshoulder. did have a sort of a clutchy burny smell but the recovery guy said it was the timing belt.

1. what simply test can i do to see which has gone wrong . belt or clutch
2.probably going to have to pay to tow to garage but what price for initial inspection to see what sort of valve/piston damage if any has been done.
3. is a 1.6 se zetec engine an interference engine and therefore guaranteed valve damage what price are we talking there?

so repair / replace engine / replace car?

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#2 STEADS

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 08:15 PM

Hi simpliest way to see if its the cam belt without causing any further damage is to take the cam belt cover off it should be self evident should be about 8 bolts holding it on shouldnt have to take it all the way take the top few out and you should be able to pull it clear enogth to see the cam pulleys if its snapped it will either be off completly or hanging loose if it is its a matter of weighing up the cost replacement engine or scrap i say replacement engine being the cheaper option than banging it in to have engine rebuilt especially if valves have hit the pistons engine change is realy no trauma if you can get a hoist do it in a day easily .that said you dont usually get a clutch smell when belt snaps so hopefully it is the clutch .
like i say gotta weigh up the cost .

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#3 btmaldon

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 08:44 PM

Unfortunately the engine wouldnt just stop if it was only the clutch that had gone. Its a real shame especially as its only just turned 10 years old and the belt would only have been just due for replacement.

As Steads says you may be better off getting a replacement engine as the cost of rebuilding these days is very expensive mainly due to the hourly rates. The valves will be bent, the pistons may well be damaged and in some cases the ends are damaged due to the shock of the pistons in the valves (this usually shows up a few thousand miles later though).

Good luck with it.

#4 STEADS

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 09:28 PM

dont be to disheartend theres bargains to be had out there got my lad a 1.8 engine with a genuine 12000 on the clock from a vehicle on the scrapage scheme 250 purrs like a cat got myself a 2.0 tdci engine for my 55 reg 450 usually sell for 1450 ish 42000 on it so worth having a look especially if you like the car and moneys tight i dabble a bit myself every now and again look for a spares or repair naff engines don,t bother me they can be replaced so long as body work is tidy cant do that .so have a look see whats available.

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#5 SEP555

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 11:05 AM

cheers guys yes it was a shame it went now as its due. The wife was driving so thats how she described it as a 'sort of clutchy smell'. The clutch also ironically was done just over a year ago beginning feb 2011. Also unfortunately been made redundant recently so its all of a bugger of a timing. So money is tight, im so unmechanically minded so wouldnt know where to start with the engine or going to a scrapyard for an engine. i kinda proded what you can see of a belt thats on the side of the engine (there that shows my level lol) and it looks ok. so the cambelt cover is to the left hand side and i should easily be able to unscrew the top ones to get a hand in to feel?

#6 rojariggs

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 12:34 PM

Have you had the damage to the engine assessed because I am pretty sure that the Zetec engine is non-interference which means there may be no damage and just requires a new belt/tensioner.

#7 STEADS

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 12:41 PM

Hi just had a quick look on the bay 1.6 engines range from 250-500 with varying mileage on pity your not closer could of helped you with an engine change in the middle of doing my 2.0 tdci at the moment i think getting a second hand motor and obivously oil and filter anti freeze you should get the job done for 600 or less as a foreigner maybe less might be worth approaching a local mech on the qt and ask him if he fancys the job cash in hand we used to watch customers walk away from the office shaking there head when they had been given a quote knowing that was the time to slip them your phone number as it would only be us who would of done the job anyway theres usualy someone in local areas who can recommend a mech who will do a good job but not charge the earth especially in these times .

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#8 SEP555

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 02:16 PM

Ive looked around on the net and there doesnt seem to be an absolute answer to whether its a non-interference engine. It would be nice to get an honest non-biased answer as to whether it is nor not. Ive asked around but noone got an answer to that other than £100 or so for assessment

#9 Stoney871

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 03:41 PM

You probably got the clutch smell because the engine stopped abruptly and most likely cooked the clutch too.

#10 rojariggs

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 04:06 PM

Ive looked around on the net and there doesnt seem to be an absolute answer to whether its a non-interference engine. It would be nice to get an honest non-biased answer as to whether it is nor not. Ive asked around but noone got an answer to that other than £100 or so for assessment

Everything I've ever read/been told is that Zetec engines are non-interference. However, without getting someone to have a look there is no way of knowing whether there is damage or not (non-interference still isn't a guarantee that there's no damage).

I would look at it this way, you've got to spend cash whatever you do so get someone to have a look. Worst case you're £100 worse off but at least you'll be able to make a much better and clearer decision about what to do next. Imagine it the other way round and you scrap an engine or even the car when it's relatively easily repairable!

Best case you find out you're OK, get the cambelt done and move on.

#11 SEP555

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 05:23 PM

So is this actually the fanbelt, cant you see the cambelt at all?

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I take it this is the cover and if i undo these top bolts i can see the belt inside?

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Also a lot of white crystals about, what could this be, something leaked, be the cause?

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#12 STEADS

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 06:18 PM

looks like the indication of a failed water pump which i,m not 100% sure runs off the cam belt on these have you any water loss did it over heat mind you even if its a head gaket /pump failure just a cheap if not cheaper to replace engine anyhow once youve had head skimmed new gaskets timing belt fluids filter labour not trying to put you off just the way it is cost wise was there any sort of rumble before hand from the engine maybe days before another way to tell if valves have hit the pistons in the event of cambelt failure is to manually turn the engine with a spanner/wrench on the crank pully out of gear of cause it should jam at a point if the timing has gone best done with the plugs out so no compression

#13 stef123

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 06:24 PM

the water pump on these engines is driven from the auxiliary drive belt - the pulley for it can be seen in the pics.

Im quite sure these engines are interference so unfortunately you more than likely will have bent valves - you have more chance of winning the lottery than no bent valves.

I was thinking of changing the engine in my 1.6 se as it was starting to burn lots of oil but i traded it in. its not the most complicated of engines or tight engine bays so its certainly a DIY job. I appreciate you are not mechanically minded and will be looking for someone to fix if you do decide to keep it.

#14 SEP555

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 06:58 PM

there was actually the day before, a whiney ticky sound lasted only a minute though. Had to do a run down to Preston so didnt get the opportunity to check it out unfortunately

#15 stef123

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 07:05 PM

there was actually the day before, a whiney ticky sound lasted only a minute though. Had to do a run down to Preston so didnt get the opportunity to check it out unfortunately


it could have been the first hint of the timing belt or tensioner failing if this is the case. you will need to get the timing belt cover off for a look

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