Is it worth the risk? - Alfa Romeo Forum
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Is it worth the risk?

Hi guys!

I live in Sweden and will be bringing my Alfa over to the UK in September hopefully. I've owned the car for about 4-5 years now, haven't driven it over a huge difference in that time since at least 2 years of that. Unfortunatly aswell I do not have the full service history of the car so am unsure of when exactly it last had a cambelt change.

So I said to myself that I'd better get it changed before embarking on a 1500 mile journey, it needs doing anyway. Another thing that needs doing is changing the inner driveshaft CV boot which is a bit damaged. But now I got the quote from my garage. To change the belt and tensioners and stuff costs 1000!! And to change the CV boot (that I'll supply myself since Alfa don't) is 230 for the labour! Its not really that strange everything is expensive here. But then I saw that I can get a full 72k premium service from Autolusso including cam, tensioners etc and then oil change, spark plug change, water pump change (and more? Bit confusing on their website but seems that AC service is included which my car very much needs.) for 845 and I doubt they'll take 230 for the changing of a CV boot! So I've started to wonder if its worth the risk and maybe try to drive the car over and get it properly serviced in the UK

So What do you guys think? go? no go? I know there is a major risk involved but how fragile is the alfa cam belt to time rather than mileage? I know it won't give any guarantees but is there any way to visually check the belt?

Thanks a lot guys, look forward to increasing the UKs GTV population!
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We should run a sweepstake with the losers monies giving to you to fund the service (or recovery truck)....
Fiver says you'll make it.

So you know for sure it has not been changed in 5 years, possibly a fair bit more. Has the car been kept in a garage all this time or left outdoors?

Realistically you are going to be gambling with a saving of a few hundred pounds as that is what the difference will be, I'm not sure I think that gamble is worth it myself but would be interested to know the outcome....if you pull it off successfully, you should spend the saved money on lottery tickets!
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Make for an interesting trip working about every funny noise, reminds me I think I be on borrowed time.
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I think there's still a ferry from Esbjerg (Denmark) to Harwich, so it doesn't have to be too long a journey, depending on where in Sweden you are.
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Do it.

As long as you reach these shores (with breakdown insurance) you will be OK.

Our GTV threw a rod through the crankcase last January. We thought scrap.

My local indie sourced a secondhand engine, swapped the belts, tensioners etc. which had been replaced 3k miles previously (a slight risk I know), put a new clutch in (the original had done 130k miles). They swapped the starter motor which had also been replaced two months before.

I paid way less than 1000 for all that - parts and labour - including VAT.

Last edited by PaulR; 16-08-13 at 22:08. Reason: Clarity
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I bought a Spider last year that hadn't had a cambelt change in over 4 years. It was OK for mileage but I got it changed as I was worried about age. When it came off it wasn't in bad condition, a bit of surface cracking but fundamentally sound. Don't know if this helps but good luck anyway.
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As Redtop said. If you are really worried I would just take it on the ferry from Esbjerg to Harwich near London. I know its still a fair drive to Esbjerg since its on the western coast of Denmark but its still a hell of a lot shorter than driving all the way to the UK.

If you don't want to take the ferry then with all honesty, I would just give the car a thorough inspection (belts, tensioners, leaks etc.) and if everything looks good; then drive it over. With all honesty, you would be pretty unlucky for that occur and it probably is unlikely anything will seriously go wrong.

Though in saying that; it definitely needs changing soon

2000 Alfa 156 Sportwagon 2.0 TS CF3

2002 Alfa GTV 2.0 TS CF3
1983 Porsche 944
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You could also impose on yourself a reduced rev limit ( 4k RPM? ) to reduce stresses. Boring journey I suppose though.
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