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eddielasvegas

This Whole Timing Belt Change Thing At 90,000 Miles...

35 posts in this topic

I have a '98 LS 400 with 82,000 miles which is why I started this thread here.

I know this has been discussed at length, but after reading much about the changing of TB's, I started thinking (that usually doesn't get me too far) about the Lexus recommendation of changing at 90,000 miles or 6 years.

What if the belt failed at 89,000 miles or 92,000 miles or 5.5 years? Is Lexus going to cover it under warranty? Of course not.

My point is, especially given this is such an expensive item, is that inspection may be be the key to maximizing the life of the belt and also not spending dollars on unnecessary maintenance. Maybe the belt tensioner and water pump makes this a moot point and these would need replacing before the belt anyway.

Any thoughts on this by others with way more Lexus seat time than me?

Eddie

P.S Does anybody know why Lexus used a belt versus a chain? Possibly a quieter engine or less power loss?

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you are right, quiter engine for the most part, i changed mine at 120k. the belt itself was just fine, but one of the pulley bearings started to whine. there is no warranty on the car unless your car is CPO and lexus recommends to change it at 90 while i would not recommend you to do so, all parts are still have a lot of life in them at this rather small mileage:) remove one of the covers and take a look at the belt, check if its cracking and if it is flexible. that should be pretty much it.

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It appears from the service records that the timing belt/water pump were done at 120K on my 98. The previous owner apparently felt it was worth the risk to wait. It's undoubtedly true that the chance of failure was small. But keep in mind that if your belt fails you'll likely have catastrophic engine damage. Though an inspection can see some problems, some mechanics say you can't always tell by an inspection how close a belt or pulley is to failure.

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1uzfe is a non interference engine, so there is going to be no catastrophic failure. your valves are not going to touch the pistons. all you going to have to do is to put the new belt up while keeping the timing settings.

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It appears from the service records that the timing belt/water pump were done at 120K on my 98. The previous owner apparently felt it was worth the risk to wait. It's undoubtedly true that the chance of failure was small. But keep in mind that if your belt fails you'll likely have catastrophic engine damage. Though an inspection can see some problems, some mechanics say you can't always tell by an inspection how close a belt or pulley is to failure.

The 1UZ-FE engine is a non-interference engine and will not destroy your engine if the timing belt fails.

Being a mechanic, I totally agree regarding the inspection. Although alot of time you can tell the condition of a belt by how flexible and "rubbery" it feels, you cannot see any cracks that are out of sight, or hidden against pulleys. the best inspection you can do without taking everything apart would be to do a check where you can see the belt, mark the spot you see with a small dot from a paint or grease pen, and then crank the engine and repeat the process, inspecting every bit of the way, until you always see a dot (one that you marked) every time you crank the engine.

Hope that helps!

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As I understand it, based on the reports here and elsewhere, the 98-00 engine is an interference engine. There is some controversy over whether the 95-97 is also an interference engine. I'd be glad to see some truly authoritative resolution of this, as I've seen "authorities" cited on both sides. I'd think the repair manual or an experienced Lexus tech would be good sources, if anyone has access to them.

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Lexus, like other manufacturers, plots the time-to-failure on the belts, and sets a point at which almost no belts fail as the interval. Of course many will go past that interval before failure - almost all of them in fact. That's no reason to ignore replacement intervals. Just because you miss an oil change or two doesn't mean the engine will blow up either. But we change oil regularly anyways.

There is no accurate or objective means of "inspecting" a belt. At the same time the belt in my 98 GS was obviously past it's prime at 100k kilometers, or about 62k miles. I changed it because the 7 year limit had been reached, and I'm glad I did.

I have changed hundreds of belts in my time. I have replaced belts that looked good, and many that looked terrible.

The Vvti engines are interference. Have one of them fail, and you'll be crying for weeks.....

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Lexus, like other manufacturers, plots the time-to-failure on the belts, and sets a point at which almost no belts fail as the interval. Of course many will go past that interval before failure - almost all of them in fact. That's no reason to ignore replacement intervals. Just because you miss an oil change or two doesn't mean the engine will blow up either. But we change oil regularly anyways.

There is no accurate or objective means of "inspecting" a belt. At the same time the belt in my 98 GS was obviously past it's prime at 100k kilometers, or about 62k miles. I changed it because the 7 year limit had been reached, and I'm glad I did.

I have changed hundreds of belts in my time. I have replaced belts that looked good, and many that looked terrible.

The Vvti engines are interference. Have one of them fail, and you'll be crying for weeks.....

Thanks for this thread, it reminded me I need to do my belt/pump, which has been easy to ignore because I have such unusally low mileage for a '98 (under 34K). But last time I had a 5K service (about 3 mos ago), my mechanic, who I do trust, suggested I change TB/WP due to the time that has elapsed. He did a visual inspection, said it LOOKED OK from what he could see, but as stated here, you can't trust a visual inspection. Techinically speaking, I'm way overdue.

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agree with above, 2uzfe and 3uzfe are interference engines while 1uzfe engine, which was installed on LS models from 90 to 97 is a non-interference engine and belt failure is not going to destroy your engine

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What am I missing here, VMF? I never heard of a 2 uzfe or a 3 uzfe engine! What would you find them in?

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2uzfe is in 98-2000, and 3uzfe is in 2001-2006 models

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Let me add my 2 cents here! My 20 year old son is driving a 1999 ls 400 because some one didn't replace their timimg belt at 90,000 miles. It broke at 95,000 miles. It ruined the engine!! The owmer didn't have the money for a new engine. So he sold a perfect looking ls400 to me for 1500 dollars. I put in a low mileage engine from the wrecking yard for 5000 dollars. My son is very happy with his car.

Timeing belts can go for 100,000 miles or more!!But the can break early also!! Rare,I must agree!! But how much a gambler are you? That's the guestion ? Good luck!

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agree with above, 2uzfe and 3uzfe are interference engines while 1uzfe engine, which was installed on LS models from 90 to 97 is a non-interference engine and belt failure is not going to destroy your engine

Interesting. I was under the impression that 95-97 were interference engines.

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95-97 have the same engine as 90-94 LS, just a lil extra power, but no vvti

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95-97 have the same engine as 90-94 LS, just a lil extra power, but no vvti

thanks for the confirmation. i see you have a ls400 and an ls430. do you think there's a big difference in basic quality between the two? i know the 430 is more luxurious and has a few more bells and whistles.

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95-97 have the same engine as 90-94 LS, just a lil extra power, but no vvti

disregard my last post. i saw the string where you discussed this. u confirmed what i suspected; the basic car is unchanged.

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http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums/index...showtopic=43039, check this thread out:)

btw I used to live in bethlehem:) nice scenery over there.

You reverse migrated from Bethlehem to NYC? Now that's a change as it's usually the other way around(i.e. NY & NJ to the lehigh valley). I'm a former Jersey resident and moved here about 6 years ago.

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attended lehigh university for a short time:)

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attended lehigh university for a short time:)

Ok. Good school.

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SBGUY said it all.. Why gamble? if your timing belt breaks while you are driving your engine will be seriously comprimised. It is not worth the risk...

It ia a rubber belt.. It is not a question of IF it is a question of WHEN....

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95-97 have the same engine as 90-94 LS, just a lil extra power, but no vvti

Dang this is bugging me -- my mechanic has a book that says my 1992 LS400 is an interference motor but I read everywhere the 90-94 (and above 90-97) are non-interference motors.

If it is truly a non-interference engine (1uz) in my 1992 then I will probably just drive it till it or the water pump goes before replacing it. No problems there other than being stranded for a bit right? I really don't know why I am posting this rather than for warm fuzzies as I have read many people posting the same question and receiving the same answer.

This is my first Lexus and I picked up a pretty worn out 1992 LS400 for $3.4k and will be attempting to bring it back into decent shape with my very rusty back-yard mechanic skill set which began with my first car, a 1959 Morris Minor which had something new broken or needing attention nearly every day. From what I read the LS400 has a reliability rating orders of magnitude better.

I picked the LS400 for its comfort, reputation of reliability and because I've always loved V8s. :)

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it really is non interference engine, when the belt snaps, engine just dies.

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attended lehigh university for a short time:)

What department are you in? I'm getting my Master's in Mechanical Engineering.

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You reverse migrated from Bethlehem to NYC? Now that's a change as it's usually the other way around(i.e. NY & NJ to the lehigh valley).

lol

"reverse migrate"...hahaha

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