Tag Archives: timing chain

2010 Audi A5 2.0 TFSI Timing Chain Fault.

This Audi A5 was brought into us barely running by a customer for our diagnosis.

We had to push the car into the Garage as it would no longer start! Firstly we carried out a diagnostic code read to see if that would point us in the right direction but there were lots of codes stored and it was hard to know what were old codes and which were relevant codes, however there was a code for ‘Camshaft and Crankshaft Incoherence‘ which normally means the timing chain has jumped teeth.

We decided to carry out a compression test before stripping the engine completely, the compression’s were all low but were similar across all four cylinders.

Once we had removed the front bumper, head lights, radiator and other ancillaries we could now access the timing chain cover. Time to remove the covers and see if the timing is out.

The timing was at least three teeth out on the exhaust camshaft which is more than enough to stop the car running and lucky enough not to cause any serious internal damage.

We check the timing using specific timing kits as shown below.

Timing Tool

This car also has two balance shafts which are ran by a separate timing chain which is also replaced as part of this job.

Balance shaft chain behind main chain

We need to lock both camshafts and the crankshaft into their timed positions using the timing tools before we start fitting the new guides and chain, once the chain is fitted we can release the new tensioner’s and remove any slack out of the chain.

Now we rebuild the engine using new gaskets where required until it is in a position to be turned over by hand, turn the engine twice by hand and recheck the timing marks all ok.

Next we replaced the oil and filter before building up the front end of the car (just in case we need to strip it again).

Time to start the engine, I don’t care how long you have been in this trade it is still a scary time when you first turn that key on a rebuilt engine!

But, first turn and it fired up and ran perfectly.

Now time to rebuild the front end top up coolant levels and road test, the engine ran beautifully and was returned to a happy customer.

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Nissan Pulsar Timing Chain Faults.

We have seen quite a lot of Timing Chain faults recently across different manufacturers from Nissan and Renault to Audi and Volkswagen.

The faults range from chains stretching and causing the Engine Management Light (EML) to come on to chains slipping and causing poor running and in some cases non start.

There is a lot of speculation as to why the chains in modern cars don’t seem to last as long as their predecessors such as poor oil quality, poor design, poor materials etc…..

What we can say is this problem is becoming more and more common and it is something you cannot ignore, if your engine starts to get a rattle that was not there before or your EML comes on and you have codes for ‘Incoherence between Cam and Crank Sensors’ make sure to get it into the garage to be checked out before it does any serious damage.

Here we have a picture of the timing chain cover from a 2016 Nissan Pulsar that had recently started to rattle, as you can see the chain was so loose it was starting to catch the top of the chain cover and wear it away.

Nissan Pulsar worn timing chain cover.
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Ford Transit 2.0 EcoBlue TDCI Wet Belt Problems!

The Ford Transit is probably one of the most common vans seen on the road today and is championed by tradesmen and delivery drivers up and down the country.

With the latest edition to the Transit range the 2.0 EcoBlue TDCI you get a Timing Belt in replacement of the old Timing Chain which Ford recommend to be replaced at 150,000 miles or ten years.

What we are seeing in the trade though is timing belt failures well before either the 150,000 mile interval or the ten year time frame.

We are recommending customers to get theirs changed around 60,000 miles or five years to prevent the chance of failure and a hefty bill for un-necessary engine repairs caused by the failure.

Transit Timing Belt



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Hyundai I20 Timing Chain Noise.

A customer brought their Hyundai I20 into us to check for an engine noise which they were concerned about.

As soon as the car drove into the workshop we had a good idea what the problem was, it sounded like the timing chain was trying to escape from the engine!

After having a good listen to the engine the next step was to strip off the timing chain cover to allow us to visually check the chain for condition.

With the timing chain cover removed we checked the timing chain, guides, gears and tensioner for wear, the chain tensioner was at full extension and the chain was still loose!

Whilst trying to turn the engine over manually to align the timing marks the chain actually started jumping teeth (it had only been the chain cover stopping this happening whilst driving).

Timing chain cover where the chain had been rubbing!

On inspection of the parts we could see everything was worn to excess and the customer had been very very lucky the chain didn’t slip whilst driving as that would have caused serious engine damage.

Once the timing chain kit had been replaced and the engine rebuilt the car purred as it should.

We later found out the Hyundai I20 had not been serviced for several years and thousands of miles leading to this problem.

Regular servicing using the correct lubricants will prevent premature wear on all engine parts especially chains, guides and gears.

Aarons Autos car service garage.

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Vauxhall Corsa D 1.2 (A12XER) Timing Chain Rattle.

We had this little Vauxhall Corsa 1.2 booked in with us for a ‘really bad engine noise’.

Once the car was in the workshop it became apparent very quickly what the noise was, the Timing Chain was rattling so bad we were surprised it hadn’t jumped a tooth and caused engine damage!

When we were stripping the engine down to put the Timing Tools in place we could see just how badly stretched the chain had become, the crank locking pin went straight in but both cam shafts were out by quite a lot.

There are several variants of the Vauxhall timing chain engines most of which requiring different timing tools which we have, 1.0 – A10XEP, 1.0 – A10XER, 1.2 – A12XER, 1.2 – A12XEL, 1.4 – A14XEL, 1.4 – A14XER, 1.4 – A14NET to name just a few.

Timing Tool A is for the Camshaft Position Rings, Tool F is for the Camshafts.

After removing the timing chain cover we could start to see what had caused the problem, the oil was very black and there was a lot of burnt carbon oil inside all the covers.

All engines require regular servicing to keep them in tip top condition but especially modern engines that run a timing chains rather than a timing belt, we are seeing more and more engines requiring timing chain kits prematurely due to a lack of servicing, poor quality oil or the wrong spec oil.

Once we had replaced the timing chain kit and re-aligned all timing marks it was time to clean all off the engine casings and refit, replace the oil and filter and refill the coolant.

When we removed the oil filter this gave us another indication of what had caused the problem, the middle of the oil filter had been sucked in, caused by the paper element of the filter being completely full of oil carbon and struggling to allow fresh oil through it, which in turn starves crucial parts of the engine of oil (timing chain) allowing them to wear, over heat and stretch.

On this particular car we advised the customer that over the next 20,000 miles they should have several oil and filter changes to help remove carbon deposits that we couldn’t see or get to whilst doing the job and this will help increase the life of their engine.

Aarons Autos car service garage.

Your friendly car garage in Derby

Give us a call at Aarons Autos for more info.

Audi A1 1.4 TFSI Timing Chain Fault.

This Audi A1 TFSI came into us with poor running, noisy and the engine management light was on! We carried out a diagnostic code read to find the reason for the EML light to be on which gave us several codes relating to an incoherence between the cam and crank shaft sensors.

The next step was to partially strip down the engine on the Audi to access the timing chain, once stripped we were able to see if the timing marks for the chain lined up with our specialist timing tools, then check for any signs of stretching or damage to the chain and gears.

In this case it was quite obvious, once the timing chain cover was removed we could see that the chain had stretched so much that even at full extension the chain tensioner couldn’t tension the chain, thus causing the timing marks to be miss aligned.

We sourced a new timing chain kit and tensioner for the A1 and fitted it making sure to check all timing marks were lined up as per factory settings, then rebuilt the engine using new gaskets, oil filter and some fresh oil.

After the rebuild we cleared all the existing codes relating to the timing issues and tested the engine which sounded nice and quiet compared to when it came in to the garage, the engine management light stayed out and all sensors read as they should.

Lastly we carried out a long road test before handing it back to a happy customer.

This seems to be a common fault on this 1.4 TFSI engine which is fitted across the VAG group of vehicles, VW, Audi, Seat and Skoda.

If you would like any more information give us a call on 01332 205070 or drop us an email at dave@aaronsautos.co.uk