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Old 07-02-08 Thread Starter
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156 cambelt failure

Hi,

I have an unwell S reg 136k 156 2.5 V6, which I need advice on.

3 miles from home I lost power and limped back at 30mph.

The car sounded like a tractor.

The AA diagnosed a collapsed cam belt tensioner and said that I would not know if the engine had been damaged unless I had this repaired and the cams retuned/realigned.

They said that this would cost several hundred pounds and the engine it might well turn out that the engine may not be viable to repair.

I love the car, but as it cost £1,750, I am reluctant to spend money if the engine is not repairable.

Does anyone have experience of this and have a feel for the chances of my engine being damaged beyond viable repair after 3 miles with dodgy cambelt?

How much would you expect the cam belt tensioner repair to cost?

How much might it cost to have an engine rebuild or a reconditioned engine fitted?

Not sure whether to scrap the car and buy another or repair this one

I hope I can save my much loved 156

Thanks

James
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

Sorry to hear about this, gutted for you. Someone will be along soon to offer you some sound advice.
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

I know you don't want to hear it but if the cambelt's gone then the very last thing you want to do is even crank the engine, let alone drive the car. Having gone even 3 miles at 30mph it's likely that all your valves will be mashed, and you may potentially have damaged the big end bearings. At the very least you'll be looking at two new/reconditioned heads and at worst (and you certainly can't rule this out unfortunately) a replacement engine.

It's not possible to tell where you stand until you've got the cylinder heads off and had a look at the valves, and the sump off to have a look at the bearings.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news

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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

I doubt a cambelt failure, happened to me some years ago, but the engine cut out immediately, when started it sounded like a turbine.
Also a broken tensioner and all valves bent ! repair on warranty , car had done 6k (2.0 TS) so I reckon yours has another failure... do not try to start it anyway !!! have a expert looking at it.
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

hi its hard to estimate a cost without seeing car, at worst there may be a few bent valves, the parts arnt crazy prices its the labour that's going to be a the biggest cost, witch area are you in ( I'm an alfa independent specialist ) could help save your loving 156 if your close,
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

This is what ive spent most of the day trying to prevent happening to me. See my post

https://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/gener...ion-again.html

Its not the belt snapping its the tensioners. Their not up to the job they were designed to do!!
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

no there not up to it at all ,but the v6 is much more reliable and is a solid metal structure, t-spark are a poor design
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

The boys at BLS have told me its worth trying a new belt and tensioner and retiming..unless the damage is obvious. They have saved a few this way..BUT YOU MUST NOT TURN THE ENGINE OVER in the meantime.

The odds are against you however, which is a great shame, and either way its not a cheap job to change the T belt..its the labour...then do you do the water pump..are the rollers in good nick..etc what are the engine mounts like..yes i've been through this with a 164 24valve...

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Old 07-02-08 Thread Starter
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

Quote:
Originally Posted by chickiboy View Post
hi its hard to estimate a cost without seeing car, at worst there may be a few bent valves, the parts arnt crazy prices its the labour that's going to be a the biggest cost, witch area are you in ( I'm an alfa independent specialist ) could help save your loving 156 if your close,
Hi I am in Kent, so Kilbride is a no go I am afraid! Thanks for the offer
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

ye a bit to far away, i have had one v6 that jumped teeth but only reset timing as a diagnosis engine was ok, just replaced belt kit and water pump. all was ok. good luck
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

Is it possible to drive a car with a broken belt? I can't see how. Barf says he drove home 3 miles, all be it at 30mph. With a broken belt I'm pretty sure the engine wont run. Is it possible its just jumped a few teeth and now the timing is out.
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Old 07-02-08 Thread Starter
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

Can anyone recommend an independent specialist in Kenet/East Sussex? I would like to at least have a go at saving it
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

I think that if one of your tensioners had collapsed you wonít have been able to drive the home, a second opinion is required in my opinion.

Ned
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

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Originally Posted by Barf View Post
Can anyone recommend an independent specialist in Kenet/East Sussex? I would like to at least have a go at saving it
If you are in the AA the independent does not have to be local you can get them to take it wherever you want.

Ned
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

If it was me, I wouldn't even consider an engine rebuild. If it doesn't run after re-timing (don't even know if its worth trying this tbh) just bin it and get a recon engine in:

alfa 156,147,166,gtv,spider, 2.5 v6 recon engine on eBay, also, Alfa Romeo, Car Parts, Cars, Parts Vehicles (end time 11-Feb-08 09:35:20 GMT)

Or

Auto Lusso - UK's Largest Independent New Alfa Romeo Supplier and Alfa Romeo Servicing

If the rest of the car is in good condition, recon engine is the way to go. Otherwise, stick it on eBay and you should get £500 for it.

Autolusso Penrith - UK's leading independent Alfa Romeo specialist with branches in Bedfordshire, Cumbria & Dorset

Wizard Exhaust systems available here

Tel: 01768 879 171
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

I am of the opinion that if his engine is running (even running like a bag of spanners) then the damage may not be as bad as it could be. Although I deffinately wouldn't even start it again before getting someone who has experience with Alfa's to come and check her out. Have a little patience and someone here will point you in the right direction.
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

A cam belt and tensioner is worth a try but a specialist will charge you around 500 to fit them.

If the cam belt has gone, and valves are bent a compression test will identify which banks are affected.

If valves are bent you're looking at a minimum of 500 to put it right in parts.
 
Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

TBH if you paid 1800 squid for the car and its got 139k on the clock, I wouldnt bother repairing it. Its going to cost you close to 1k to fix that. best case scenario is a new cambelt at £350-400inc labor. Even then, you dont know what else could have gone wrong internally especially if you continued to drive it.

IMO buy another 156. 2k will buy you a 2002 facelift these days. Remove the alloys and good bits and sell them on ebay, scrap the rest.
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Old 07-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

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Originally Posted by kamran View Post
2k will buy you a 2002 facelift these days.
I think thats a bit of an underestimation there. Maybe on eBay but most of the Alfa's that go cheap on there are dogs with £1k plus of servicing due and only a months MOT left..
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Old 08-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

It sounds to me as if the belt has jumped a few teeth, the fact that the engine is runningis a good sign. Is the tractor like noise a mettalic rattling sound, or it it a not mettalic chugging sound?

Fingers crossed here for you.
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Old 08-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

As soon as you take the cam belt cover off you will see if the problem is belt and tensioner related. If it is then a new set should sort it out. The fact that its running, however badly suggests that you don't have any valve damage.
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Old 08-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

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Originally Posted by Rockhopper View Post
As soon as you take the cam belt cover off you will see if the problem is belt and tensioner related. If it is then a new set should sort it out. The fact that its running, however badly suggests that you don't have any valve damage.
what I said !!!
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Old 08-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

And its not entirely correct.

Just because it runs, albeit badly, it does not mean there is no valve damage.
 
Old 08-02-08 Thread Starter
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

Quote:
Originally Posted by symonh2000 View Post
It sounds to me as if the belt has jumped a few teeth, the fact that the engine is runningis a good sign. Is the tractor like noise a mettalic rattling sound, or it it a not mettalic chugging sound?

Fingers crossed here for you.
The sound is more like a non-metallic chugging sound - is this good news?
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Old 08-02-08
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Re: 156 cambelt failure

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Originally Posted by Barf View Post
The sound is more like a non-metallic chugging sound - is this good news?
I would say it is good news, but I certainly wouldn't be running it until it has been looked at properly. If valves and pistons were colliding it would sound more of a metallic rattle.
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