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Possible timing belt break?


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Hi all. Well I’m finally back in a 2000 Esprit V8. This is the second one I’ve owned. The car has right at 20,000 miles. So the issue is today I’m driving along about a mile from my brothers house and I hear a noise from the engine. Not quite a clacking but more like a loud clicking. The temp is fine no other lights except an engine light that has been coming on and off since I got the car. I get to his house and there is burning rubber smell and light smoke coming from the front of the engine. I turn off the engine and the smoke dissipates. I wait about 15 minutes and see if the car will start (it did not shut off on me when I was driving). It’s starts right up and running smooth no tick or clacking or rough idle or anything maybe just a slight squeal.  Could this be maybe a serpentine belt or something worse. Would it start up smooth if it was  timing belt? Won’t be able to taking it in till Monday. 


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Welcome to TLF Mike. :welcome:

If your timing belt has broken, the engine won't start at all. If you are getting some sort of smoke and rubber smell from the engine, don't run it. If you are taking it in on Monday, I would even look at getting it trailered there unless it is just around the corner. You do not want anything to break. Just ask @Barrykearley.

There are several belts at the front of the engine. I presume you don't have the facilities yourself to get under the car to have a  look?

Anyway, hope it all turns out ok.

You should duck over to the Introductions section and say hi in there as well. :) 

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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Thanks for the reply! I was kind of thinking the same thing, that it wouldn’t turn over if it was the timing belt or much less run smooth and have steady idle. I did look at the top of the serpitne belt and one side does look a bit freyed. Maybe a siezed pulley or something? Definatley will have it towed. 

Edited by SAMike
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Hi Mike, 

Get it straight into a workshop, the smell of burning rubber and smoke would ring alarm bells with me,  not sure how technically minded you are, but anything that would raise alarms bells on the V8 engine i would get it checked out straight away, even consider trailering it to a workshop. 

The V8 engine is extremely ex[pensive to repair is the cambelt fails, also although your car has only done 20,000 miles, the cambelt has an age limit also, so do not just thing oh it has hardly any miles so it will be fine,  as the rubber in the cambelt deterorates over a period of years, een more so with a car with low miles as the belt will of sat in the same postion for long periods of time, this makes the belts conform to the shape of the camsprockets and crank toothed pulled etc, which in turn is not good for the cambelt.

Hopefully it is just an auxilery belt, but please get it checked out, for the sake of a few hours labour and the cost of a new cambelt and sepertine belts, the outlay if you you leave it will be far worse cost wise in parts and other repairs that come with a V8 Cambelt failure. 

Search the forums as i think the last well documented V8 failure on these forums was Alex, who works on cars for living and it still turned out expensive even without labour due to parts prices. 

Good luck and hope it turns out to be something simple, but get the cambelt done pronto imo :)

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  • Gold FFM

Don’t start that car up again.

check the cam belt covers - it may be one of those has come loose and is rubbing on the pulley. You need to investigate exactly what’s going on there. 

If you break that cam belt - seriously you will spunk $10-15k on parts and labour.

use blue belts from Jae - they are far superior items.

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Only here once

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  • 2 weeks later...

UPDATE: Well finally had the chance to take the car in today. Definatley not a timing belt issue. Looking like a seized AC Compressor. But I am having the timing belts, water pump, etc.. service done (since I don’t have  any service records showing that having been done or when the last time it was done if at all) as well as new ac compressor and all the related parts. Will keep you up to date 

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The best compressor I found for my car was from rock auto. Was not a rebuilt and a direct drop in for the v8. Was able to take it out without even lifting the engine. Look at Rock Auto and use part number CS0052.

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