Technical Car/Motor Issues > Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? Miscellaneous
Thread Author: Focusless Replies: 31

 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Focusless
My Focus is now 11 years old, although it hasn't yet done 70k miles. A brief google indicates that it's past the age, if not mileage, at which the cam belt should be changed.

It's just had an interim service, so how risky would it be to leave the belt change for another year? I think there are some other antique Focus owners on the forum - how much did your cam belt change cost approx?
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - zookeeper
cambelt changes are over rated .....they should be done if you cant sleep at night ....ive got a polo on its origanal cambelt and its done 95k 8 valve mind
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Arjades
>>cambelt changes are over rated .....they should be done if you cant sleep at night<<

I don't have any problem sleeping at night, but I've just had my cam belt replaced at 4 years/35k smiles :)
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Zero
Same car, 5 years 51k miles - not done yet.

Sleeping soundly at night. It will be done some time this year.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Arjades
Seems to be a simple enough job (compared to some) are you doing it yourself?
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Zero
Given the low price the local mitsi dealer charges for that job, nah its not worth the hastle and worth some form of guarantee,
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Arjades
The pain dealer I took mine to in Foulmouth yesterday charged me 97 labour, 44 for the belt, plus VAT.

= insurance + peace of mind!
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Dave_C220CDI
>> cambelt changes are over rated .....they should be done if you cant sleep at night

Nah... If I'm worried, I just sell the car ;)

I don't lie about it, if the buyer asks I'll tell them if I don't think it's had a belt change.
Last edited by: Dave_TDCi on Tue 20 Mar 12 at 20:38
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - VxFan
Generally cambelt changes are at a certain mileage or age (whichever comes first)

The rubber deteriorates with age as well as use.

The question is, do you want the worry of wondering if it will last another year every time you use the car or change it now for piece of mind.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - carmalade
Focus cam belt change is 100k miles or 10 years.It is often the idler/tensioner pulleys that break up before the belt snaps.Rarely seen a belt break on a Zetec engine.hth
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - swiss tony
>> Focus cam belt change is 100k miles or 10 years.It is often the idler/tensioner pulleys
>> that break up before the belt snaps.
>>

Very true.
Few years back I brought a Mondeo 2.0 ghia Mk 2, it had a new belt fitted 4k before.
Engine went bang, got it towed in, and stripped plastic had broken away from the tensioner roller, and dropped between crank pulley and belt.
all 8 exhaust valves bent.

Warranty company said 'NO. we aint paying - only the belt is covered, and that's intact.'

Ended up rebuilding it myself.... (cost me 500 in parts, labour would have doubled that easily....)
Last edited by: swiss tony on Sat 17 Mar 12 at 10:20
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - henry k
Spooky! A very very similar tale.

>>Few years back I brought a Mondeo 2.0 ghia Mk 2, it had a new belt fitted 4k before.
>>Engine went bang, got it towed in, and stripped plastic had broken away from the tensioner roller,
>>

I bought my 98 Mondeo 2.0 Ghia Mk 2 Jul 04 @83K, it had a new belt fitted 3K before (at 80K as per older engines ?)

@ 111K and engine not happy so straight to my indie for TLC.
Diagnosed as cambelt but no damage done!
The plastic on the tensioner roller looked as if it had some of the suface melted. When I handled it, the plastic skin fell off in two parts but the bearing seemed fine.

I suspect the earlier belt change did not include tensioner rollers.
Belt was not the original but was of course binned.
I sleep well :-)
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - swiss tony
>> Spooky! A very very similar tale.
>> I bought my 98 Mondeo 2.0 Ghia Mk 2 Jul 04 @83K, it had a
>> new belt fitted 3K before (at 80K as per older engines ?)
>> @ 111K and engine not happy so straight to my indie for TLC.
>> Diagnosed as cambelt but no damage done!
>> The plastic on the tensioner roller looked as if it had some of the suface
>> melted. When I handled it, the plastic skin fell off in two parts but the
>> bearing seemed fine.

You were VERY lucky by the sound of that....

Here's pictures of my pulley as removed from engine.....
s1267.photobucket.com/albums/jj559/swiss-tony/


Also uploaded piccy of one piston ALL 4 were like this... look at lower part - valve impact damage.
Last edited by: swiss tony on Tue 20 Mar 12 at 21:02
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - henry k
>>You were VERY lucky by the sound of that....
Indeed.
I also got away with a Mk4 Cortina 1.6L. The belt snapped so I kicked in the clutch and rolled silently into a carpark to thr confusion of those there.
IIRC the 1.6L was a non valve impact version so it was just a new belt.

Here's pictures of my pulley as removed from engine.....
s1267.photobucket.com/albums/jj559/swiss-tony/
Also uploaded piccy of one piston ALL 4 were like this... look at lower part - valve impact damage.
Not pretty!
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - swiss tony
>> s1267.photobucket.com/albums/jj559/swiss-tony/
>> Also uploaded piccy of one piston ALL 4 were like this... look at lower part
>> - valve impact damage.
>> Not pretty!
>>

From what i was told, it could have been worse - the exhaust valves got bent, but apparently the guides can get damaged, or even cracked heads....
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - L'escargot
Ford's recommendation is 100,000 miles or 10 years, whichever is the sooner. It's not worth risking a failure by not sticking to that.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - bathtub tom
It cost me around fifty quid to do the cam-belt and tensioner on my fifty-quid car and it's a non-interference engine.

I did it because the inconvenience of breaking the cam-belt outweighed the cost.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Dave_C220CDI
>> Ford's recommendation is 100,000 miles or 10 years, whichever is the sooner

I asked at the Ford dealer when my old Escort (with a 1.8 Zetec engine) was approaching 100k, the consensus among all the service staff was an 80,000 mile / 10 year interval. I still didn't get it done, and sold the car with 120-something thousand on it.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - L'escargot
>> >> Ford's recommendation is 100,000 miles or 10 years, whichever is the sooner
>>
>> I asked at the Ford dealer when my old Escort (with a 1.8 Zetec engine)
>> was approaching 100k, the consensus among all the service staff was an 80,000 mile /
>> 10 year interval. I still didn't get it done, and sold the car with 120-something
>> thousand on it.
>>

I asked the Service Advisor at a large Ford dealer (Ringways Garages Ltd in Doncaster) about my 1999 2 litre Focus and he said that the shortest mileage that they had seen a failure at was 125,000 miles. At the time mine had done about 85,000 and he said it would be wasting money to change it at that mileage.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - bathtub tom
>>I asked the Service Advisor at a large Ford dealer (Ringways Garages Ltd in Doncaster) about my 1999 2 litre Focus and he said that the shortest mileage that they had seen a failure at was 125,000 miles. At the time mine had done about 85,000 and he said it would be wasting money to change it at that mileage.

I had a rattle on my Focus. The local Ford dealer workshop foreman diagnosed it as drop link ball-joints on the front anti-roll bar. He then added "I don't know why they fit them, they're not necessary" in reference to anti-roll bars.

I've had other serious problems mis-diagnosed by other experienced, main dealer staff and no longer trust anything they say.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - L'escargot
>> I've had other serious problems mis-diagnosed by other experienced, main dealer staff and no longer
>> trust anything they say.
>>

So who do you trust?
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Dave_C220CDI
>> I've had other serious problems mis-diagnosed by other experienced, main dealer staff and
>> no longer trust anything they say.

Me too. Like you BTT I know what I'm on about with cars but main dealers seem to have a special way of being condescending whilst telling you in a roundabout way that your diagnosis is wrong and they know better. Then charging you for work that didn't need doing and hasn't fixed the problem.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - L'escargot
>> main
>> dealers seem to have a special way of being condescending whilst telling you in a
>> roundabout way that your diagnosis is wrong and they know better. Then charging you for
>> work that didn't need doing and hasn't fixed the problem.
>>

I've always found Ford dealers to be completely honest. When I enquired at my previous dealer about my previous Focus they told me it wasn't worth having the cambelt changed earlier than Ford's recommendations. My current dealer has told me my current Focus's sump is rusty (I've checked and it is) but it wouldn't need replacing until it actually starts to drip oil. I asked them about a rumbling that I thought I could hear from the rear and (after driving it with me as a passenger) they said it wasn't serious and was probably caused by worn tyres. They were right because when I eventually had new tyres on the rear the noise disappeared. When I have the car serviced I get free collection and delivery afterwards. I'm well pleased. And if you were thinking that I don't know anything about cars and would be easily conned, I spent a working lifetime in automotive R & D. (That's not bragging but merely making the point.)
Last edited by: L'escargot on Wed 21 Mar 12 at 08:50
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - crocks
My 1999 Focus had its belt changed at 11 years. As I expected to keep the car longterm I decided there was not much to be gained by delaying it any more.

It cost 220 in 2010 at my indy.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Focusless
Thanks for the responses; better find out how much it costs.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - zookeeper
Is there a cambelt guinness book of records of sorts? i know theres a geezer whos still running a volvo on 1000k or more but obviously nothing to do about cambelts ...is there a car superlatives website of any note?
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - madf
My son's 1998 Peugeot 106 is on its original cambelt. Inspected it last year : OK. SO left it.
62k miles of which he has done 40k in past 4 years.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - zookeeper
cambelts are a masterpiece of design for the motor trade, built in failure if you will...would such a device be found in the braking system i doubt it?
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Number_Cruncher
>>would such a device be found in the braking system i doubt it?

Late 80's / early 90's Ford used a toothed rubber belt to drive the ABS units - so, yes, exactly such a device can be found in braking systems.

 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - Zero
>> >>would such a device be found in the braking system i doubt it?
>>
>> Late 80's / early 90's Ford used a toothed rubber belt to drive the ABS
>> units - so, yes, exactly such a device can be found in braking systems.

Didn't lead to total unexpected brake failure tho did it.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - DP
>> My son's 1998 Peugeot 106 is on its original cambelt. Inspected it last year :
>> OK. SO left it.
>> 62k miles of which he has done 40k in past 4 years.

How can you inspect it properly without removing it? The cracks tend to form at the base of the teeth, and are invisible unless you can bend the belt back on itself.

The belt I took off my old Mondeo TD looked in really good nick, but upon closer inspection when removed, a couple of the teeth were quite badly perished and cracks had formed which, if left, would have resulted in the teeth peeling away from the belt. None of this damage was visible with the belt in situ.

It is also just as common for tensioners to fail as belts, and they can't be assessed unless the load is removed from them, and the bearings checked for freeplay and noise.

If you're going to go to these lengths, you may as well just pop a new belt kit on.
 Ford Focus - 01 2.0 cam belt change? - swiss tony
>> The belt I took off my old Mondeo TD looked in really good nick, but upon closer inspection when removed, a couple of the teeth were quite badly perished and cracks had formed which, if left, would have resulted in the teeth peeling away from the belt. None of this damage was visible with the belt in situ.
>>
>> It is also just as common for tensioners to fail as belts, and they can't be assessed unless the load is removed from them, and the bearings checked for freeplay and noise.
>>
>> If you're going to go to these lengths, you may as well just pop a new belt kit on.

110% agree.
Anyone who doesn't just take a look at the pictures I have posted.......
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