Timing belt problems?

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SearchMaster

Diamond Member
Jun 6, 2002
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Car: 1998 Honda Accord EX, 2.2L 4cyl, 260K miles

The car is rarely driven now, but was a little overdue for a new timing belt/water pump. I do simple service and repair but this is out of my comfort zone. My wife took it a friend of hers who is no longer a mechanic by trade but has done hundreds of these in his past life as one. One thing to note: while the car is 17 years old and has over a quarter million miles, just about every person who has driven or ridden in it has commented on how smooth and well kept the car is. It has always had a very smooth ride and engine.

I went with my wife to pick it up and immediately noticed a change when I started it. It idled with a great deal of vibration and noise. Acceleration only exacerbated the problem...more noise, more vibration. We drove about a mile to have breakfast and after I voiced my concerns, she took it back to him.

I told her to have him check the front motor mount because I was pretty sure you had to remove it to do the TB service. He went ahead and replaced the FMM but said the timing belt was fine, and she drove it home that evening. She felt like it idled much better but said acceleration was still "off".

I drove it the following day (yesterday) and would agree with her assessment. It idles pretty much normally now but the acceleration is still noticeably harsher than it used to be. It doesn't sound like the engine is about to blow up or anything like that, just noisier with vibration.

Maybe the tensioner?
 

gururu2

Senior member
Oct 14, 2007
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I had a TB snap in my 95 integra at a stop light and it flat died. Don't know how it feels if it lost some teeth or something. I got into a habit of switching the belt(s) and WP out every 50k myself. Its not a hard job (the second time LOL). Could it be more along the lines of your fuel injectors?
 

jlee

Lifer
Sep 12, 2001
48,511
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Sounds like he might be off a tooth or two on the timing belt.
 

steppinthrax

Diamond Member
Jul 17, 2006
3,990
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81
Car: 1998 Honda Accord EX, 2.2L 4cyl, 260K miles

The car is rarely driven now, but was a little overdue for a new timing belt/water pump. I do simple service and repair but this is out of my comfort zone. My wife took it a friend of hers who is no longer a mechanic by trade but has done hundreds of these in his past life as one. One thing to note: while the car is 17 years old and has over a quarter million miles, just about every person who has driven or ridden in it has commented on how smooth and well kept the car is. It has always had a very smooth ride and engine.

I went with my wife to pick it up and immediately noticed a change when I started it. It idled with a great deal of vibration and noise. Acceleration only exacerbated the problem...more noise, more vibration. We drove about a mile to have breakfast and after I voiced my concerns, she took it back to him.

I told her to have him check the front motor mount because I was pretty sure you had to remove it to do the TB service. He went ahead and replaced the FMM but said the timing belt was fine, and she drove it home that evening. She felt like it idled much better but said acceleration was still "off".

I drove it the following day (yesterday) and would agree with her assessment. It idles pretty much normally now but the acceleration is still noticeably harsher than it used to be. It doesn't sound like the engine is about to blow up or anything like that, just noisier with vibration.

Maybe the tensioner?

Sometimes it can be off by a tooth and still run but idle poorly. If he said the belt is fine then it's fine.

Timing belt change is not too hard. Pull the timing cover off and rotate the crank. Check to see if the engine is "in time". If not then you see what happened. Also check the belt for cracks/missing teeth. You can go ahead and replace the belt while you are there. Also when doing timing belt service, it's a good idea to go ahead and change everything on that side of the engine.

I did a timing belt service on my 99 camry when it hit 100K. I changed the crank seal, cam seal, oil pump gasket, oil pump shaft seal, tensioner and ideler.
 

NutBucket

Lifer
Aug 30, 2000
27,034
546
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Sounds like he might be off a tooth or two on the timing belt.
Agreed. Or maybe the balance shaft isn't aligned correctly. IIRC the '98 should be have an F23 so there are two belts; one for the cam and one for the balance shaft.

If it isn't running smoothly but power delivery is normal then that's my best guess.

P4120112.JPG
 

SearchMaster

Diamond Member
Jun 6, 2002
7,792
114
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Sounds like he might be off a tooth or two on the timing belt.

That was my initial thought but a quick Google seemed to indicate the symptoms would be even more severe than I'm experiencing...but I don't know what "bad" timing sounds/feels like.

The TB and water pump were definitely replaced, I'm not sure about the tensioner (my wife is checking with the mechanic), but I assume it was as well (I'm pretty sure the service schedule calls for it and this guy is "by the book").
 

gururu2

Senior member
Oct 14, 2007
686
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That was my initial thought but a quick Google seemed to indicate the symptoms would be even more severe than I'm experiencing...but I don't know what "bad" timing sounds/feels like.

The TB and water pump were definitely replaced, I'm not sure about the tensioner (my wife is checking with the mechanic), but I assume it was as well (I'm pretty sure the service schedule calls for it and this guy is "by the book").

its definitely included in the kits for a timing belt change. I had something happening during acceleration on my 2000 elantra but not as bad as your sounds and that also flat out died after a while. Ended up being a crank position sensor.

http://www.doityourself.com/stry/warning-signs-of-a-bad-crankshaft-position-sensor#b
 

steppinthrax

Diamond Member
Jul 17, 2006
3,990
6
81
That was my initial thought but a quick Google seemed to indicate the symptoms would be even more severe than I'm experiencing...but I don't know what "bad" timing sounds/feels like.

The TB and water pump were definitely replaced, I'm not sure about the tensioner (my wife is checking with the mechanic), but I assume it was as well (I'm pretty sure the service schedule calls for it and this guy is "by the book").

You can buy a timing kit on ebay for like 80 bucks. It contains everything on that side.
 

bamx2

Senior member
Oct 25, 2004
483
1
81
It does seem to appear that the belt might be a tooth off.




For those those who need to replace their Honda timing belts - Replace all of the timing belt components and water pump with Honda factory parts or Aisin brand (a Honda supplier) only . Don't use anything else (I've been there). You can buy the Aisin brand Timing belt kits at Amazon or Rock Auto .

BTW- Getting that crank pulley ( harmonic pulley) loosened on a CCW Acura / Honda can be very difficult . Search around the web for tips before you start so that you atr prepared for it.
 
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silicon

Senior member
Nov 27, 2004
886
1
81
Car: 1998 Honda Accord EX, 2.2L 4cyl, 260K miles

The car is rarely driven now, but was a little overdue for a new timing belt/water pump. I do simple service and repair but this is out of my comfort zone. My wife took it a friend of hers who is no longer a mechanic by trade but has done hundreds of these in his past life as one. One thing to note: while the car is 17 years old and has over a quarter million miles, just about every person who has driven or ridden in it has commented on how smooth and well kept the car is. It has always had a very smooth ride and engine.

I went with my wife to pick it up and immediately noticed a change when I started it. It idled with a great deal of vibration and noise. Acceleration only exacerbated the problem...more noise, more vibration. We drove about a mile to have breakfast and after I voiced my concerns, she took it back to him.

I told her to have him check the front motor mount because I was pretty sure you had to remove it to do the TB service. He went ahead and replaced the FMM but said the timing belt was fine, and she drove it home that evening. She felt like it idled much better but said acceleration was still "off".

I drove it the following day (yesterday) and would agree with her assessment. It idles pretty much normally now but the acceleration is still noticeably harsher than it used to be. It doesn't sound like the engine is about to blow up or anything like that, just noisier with vibration.

Maybe the tensioner?
recheck the timing belt..maybe off by a tooth as has been mentioned. or find a new mechanic.
 

C1

Platinum Member
Feb 21, 2008
2,316
77
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Better get to the bottom of it & have the engine checked by a dealer or shop. If it does not have full power because it is not timed properly (eg, not able to use fully the fuel energy; ie, throwing it out the tail pipe), then it may not pass SMOG (ie, repair bites you in the ass down the road).
 
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