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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, I'm new to this forum. I just picked up my first 1.8T car, a 2000 NB GLX with only 34K miles. The original owner says the timing belt has never been changed. Recommended timing belt change interval is 105K miles. Some folks recommend changing at 60-70K to be safe. I'm at only 34K miles but the car is 12 years old. Should I change or can I wait? Is it safe for me to wait until the 40K major service? Thanks in advance.
 

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Hi and welcome to the org! If that were my car, I would have the timing belt changed ASAP. Even though it has only 34 k on it, you are living on borrowed time. I would bet that before the day is over there will be plenty of Orgers chiming in on this. :)
 

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5/23/10 <3
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x2. Definitely get it changed. You are correct, its 12 years on the components. An "early" timing belt job is much cheaper than the repairs from a timing belt failure!
 

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X3 Just because you only have 34K miles on the clock doesn't really matter because Rubber rots due to age and heat. I wouldn't trust that 13 year old rubber band to hold together much longer. When that belt goes so does your head and you will be looking at several thousand bucks to get that fixed.

Do yourself and your car a favor and change the timing belt, accessory belt, water pump, tensioner, pulley and if you can the thermostat. I would throw in a new (GREEN) temp sensor since you probably still have the old Black one which is prone to failure.

Here are the parts you need.

Volkswagen New Beetle 1.8T > Search > Timing Belt > ES#5954 ECS Tuning Timing Belt Kit - Ultimate Plus - 06B198479 V2WAF

Volkswagen New Beetle 1.8T > Search > Coolant Sensor > ES#264174 Coolant Temperature Sensor With O-Ring & Clip - 4 Pin - 078919501CKT

Attached is a PDF for the procedure for the timing belt. It's not brain surgery but it is a bit involved but doing it yourself can save you several hundred bucks. The dealer charges between 1300-1700 for this service.

Good Luck!

I have a better DIY but it's in WORD document and it won't let me post it on here. Says invalid format.
 

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x4 Do the whole kit.

The peace of mind is worth it alone.

Plus, it gives you a baseline for the next time!

That Bug needs to be driven... A lot!:)
 

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Change the belt soon.

The thing is you will need to change the belt either way, either a PM job or when it breaks. When it breaks it is no on your schedule and it WILL bend valves, so it will cost a lot more to repair.

I used this kit here - Vw Beetle Timing Belt - Beetle Timing Belt Kit - 1.8 Liter

Purchased a serpentine belt tensioner for another $20.

Put the thermostat in the car as well, it like needs one, they fail open or open too early.

You probably do not need the cam or crank seals, but it comes with the kit.

Also be careful of your dipstick tube, probably needs to be replaced along with some of the small check valves on top of the engine.

Make sure you use the correct oil, VW had problems with the oil pick ups getting carboned up and clogged. I just changed mine out at 75k miles running Mobil One synthetic with 5k change intervals!!

These motors can cook oil, but I also think the thermostat fail and the engines run too cold as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Really appreciate the great advice everyone! If I don't have time to do the work myself, should I buy one of those timing belt kits and bring to a mechanic or will most experienced VW mechanics know all the parts that should be changed (as supplied with the kits)?

Has anyone heard of a case where a timing belt broke before 40K miles regardless of time interval?
 

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Can't think of one specifically, but why risk it? Time plays a big factor on these parts. And its not just the belt, its also the tensioner, water pump, etc. Any one of those fail and you have problems.

I'd take a look here for a mechanic experienced with VWs. They are TDI specialists but most do work on gassers as well. And if they can work successfully on a TDI, then they will do excellent with your gasser. Trusted TDI Mechanics - By State - TDIClub Forums
 

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Really appreciate the great advice everyone! If I don't have time to do the work myself, should I buy one of those timing belt kits and bring to a mechanic or will most experienced VW mechanics know all the parts that should be changed (as supplied with the kits)?

Has anyone heard of a case where a timing belt broke before 40K miles regardless of time interval?
I have a friend that has a 2001 Audi TT with 1.8 engine and he only had 42000 miles on the clock when the timing belt broke. Actually, his tensioner seized up and made the timing belt jump several teeth.
Same results. Cost him over 3000 bucks to have it fixed. He too thought he had plenty of time. Back then his car was only 8 years old. So age does play a big roll not just mileage.
 

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Has anyone heard of a case where a timing belt broke before 40K miles regardless of time interval?
Yep. Age is just as bad as milage. Once a timing belt is 5 years old, replace it, no questions asked unless you like to gamble.
 

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If the hydraulic tensioner leaks or has issues, you are in trouble.

I was happy with Blauparts kit, it had EVERYTHING I needed and for the $250 I thought it was a bargain. I would NEVER replace the timing belt on one of these engines without a new tensioner, idler or water pump.

I found a shop that listed timing belt replacement for about $550 in the east coast.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Can't think of one specifically, but why risk it? Time plays a big factor on these parts. And its not just the belt, its also the tensioner, water pump, etc. Any one of those fail and you have problems.

I'd take a look here for a mechanic experienced with VWs. They are TDI specialists but most do work on gassers as well. And if they can work successfully on a TDI, then they will do excellent with your gasser. Trusted TDI Mechanics - By State - TDIClub Forums
One of the shops on this list in my area charges $900-$1000 for a timing belt service which includes: timing belt, tensioners, dampner, rollers (if applicable), water pump, serpentine belts. Does this sound like a reasonable price to pay?

Looks like the overwhelming opinion here is to replace the timing belt. I'll start planning for this. Thanks again folks!
 

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timing belt kit

Everyone here is correct you need to replace those original dealer parts asap cause the water pump has a plastic empeller and usually go's or slips from the shaft or the fins break and jams the water pump and then the timing belt jumps a few teeth, KAPUUT- engine down the drain or Pay 3k to rebuild. The second interval you can get away with a few more k miles before changing. good luck man
fyi- MJM Autohaus has a pretty good kit
 

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$900-$1000 sounds really high??

Even at $100 per hour, giving 5 hours to do the job, and the Blauparts kit at around $260, you are only at $760.

Not sure what the book time calls for, but I think it took me about 7 hours. BUT this was my very first time tearing into one of these motors, included lunch, about an hour trip to the dealer to pick up the metal turbo water line that connects to the body, removing and installing the metal turbo water line, overly cleaning parts as it is my daughters car and I want to be able to see leaks easily, digging through my electronic Bentley manual for torque specs and following a somewhat generic and inaccurate procedure.

I would expect an experience VW mechanic to be able to do the job in 3-4 hours, but if the book time say 8-9 hours, this is what they will charge you. Also note that book time may involve dropping the engine, but this is not required. You do need to remove the lower engine torque strut and jack the engine up, but I just used my floor jack and a scrap piece of wood.

Warning to all, watch these shops and their double dipping labor rates. Many times shops add up the labor for a water pump, timing belt, radiator drain and serpentine belt replacement, when a water pump replacement covers the labor for the timing belt and serpentine belt and radiator drain.

I am fine with shops making money, but when the charge for a engine removal and do the job without removing the engine, this is just straight theft in my opinion. Reasonable minds need to prevail as I am not going to fund crooks.
 

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That does sound high, but then again you're in Cali and everything costs more there :p

Have you contacted anyone else on the list? $800 is a better price, and that's on the high end of what I usually see for a 1.8T.
 

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One of the shops on this list in my area charges $900-$1000 for a timing belt service which includes: timing belt, tensioners, dampner, rollers (if applicable), water pump, serpentine belts. Does this sound like a reasonable price to pay?
I think you can do better as far as price goes. When I was thinking of having it done a couple of months ago I called around and everyone in my area was $750-800 for the 1.8T engine for the complete service which does include the timing belt, accessory belt, water pump with metal impellar, tensioner, pulley and G12 coolant. Now I would also recommend swapping out the thermostat and thermostat housing but most shops charge extra for this since it takes them another hour to get it done. I ended up doing it myself and saving about 500 bucks. I shopped around and the most complete kit out there is the ECS tuning Ultimate Plus kit. It includes everything the other kits include PLUS it does come with the needed New Motor Mount Bolts which most other kits don't include and it also comes with 2x1.5 liter bottles of G12 coolant which again is something that the other kits don't have. Right now the ECS tuning kit is on sale for 238 bucks which includes everything you need to perform the timing belt service. A good shop can install these items in about 4 hours so if you buy this kit and have a shop install it then don't pay more than 4 hours of labor which equals to about $400 dollars. If they do the Thermostat perhaps 5 hours or $500 dollars MAX. Don't pay 900 or 1000 dollars that is way too high unless you go to a dealer than that's a bargain ;) since they charge you double of what anyone else will.

Volkswagen New Beetle 1.8T > Search > Timing Belt > ES#5954 ECS Tuning Timing Belt Kit - Ultimate Plus - 06B198479 V2WAF

Also free shipping on their timing belt kits.

Good Luck!
 

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prices

My local Mechanic who had done that same kit before quoted me $250 if I brought the parts, I just did it myself for the experience and fun, fun, fun..:D
 

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My local Mechanic who had done that same kit before quoted me $250 if I brought the parts, I just did it myself for the experience and fun, fun, fun..:D
WOW, for $250 bucks I would have let them do it. :p
I can imagine a lot of things that are more Fun than installing a timing belt :p
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Sounds like there is some money to be saved by buying parts on my own and asking a shop to install it. Are most independent shops friendly about installing self supplied parts by the customer?
 

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diy

Sounds like there is some money to be saved by buying parts on my own and asking a shop to install it. Are most independent shops friendly about installing self supplied parts by the customer?
There are several diy threads around here that give you step by step with pictures on how to do it yourself and save even more. Highly recommanded and a good learning experience if you plan on keeping the car a long time this way you'll know how to do it for next time around. The more repairs you do yourself the more you learn about these cars. good luck and welcome to newbeetle.org newbie. LOL
 
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