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joshuambenhase 02-02-2012 08:27 PM

Timing Belt/Water Pump
Purchased a 2004 Sienna in beginning of December '11 and it has rode beautifully and no problems. It had one previous owner who put 142,000k on it and from the carfax seemed to do routine maintenance but it did not say anything about timing belt being replaced. Is there a way to check it without having to go in there and take everything apart?

r2d2 02-02-2012 11:45 PM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
You could go to a toyota dealer service advisor, show them that you're the new owner of the van and ask him if he has in his record the last time the timing belt was replaced.
This of course if the previous owner had it replaced in a toyota dealer.

ybre 02-03-2012 01:31 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
Or you register with Toyota, enter your VIN and check the service history online.
This is if the service was performed by a Toyota dealer.

happycamper 02-03-2012 07:28 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
Check the condition of the serpentine belt. Usually, the serpentine belt is replaced when the timing belt is replaced. Also, are the spark plugs original? If the previous owner hadn't changed the spark plugs, then it is unlikely that the timing belt has been changed.

joshuambenhase 02-04-2012 08:53 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
Ok, I looked at the serpentine belt and it looks relatively newer for the mileage on this van. Next, dumb question, where are the spark plugs? Do I need to remove stuff to see them?

brian_bp 02-05-2012 12:58 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump

Originally Posted by happycamper (Post 68811)
Also, are the spark plugs original? If the previous owner hadn't changed the spark plugs, then it is unlikely that the timing belt has been changed.

If the "142,000k" is 142,000 kilometres - typical for a 2004 - then the first spark plug change has not come due (it is at 192,000 km), and the first timing belt interval is just arriving, so there's no implications to original spark plugs. If it was supposed to be "142k" meaning 142,000 miles, then it would be overdue (by 22,000 miles) for the plugs, but the previous owner could certainly have changed the timing belt (even twice) to prevent engine damage and not bothered with the plugs as long the ignition was still working fine.

If it is in kilometres the vehicle is presumably in Canada, and the corresponding owners' web site is Club Toyota.

joshuambenhase 02-05-2012 07:59 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
Well, what I am getting to is I am trying to figure out if there is an semi-easy way I can check the wear on the timing belt? If there is a cover I can take off easily and if needed other components to be removed to get to it. It is 142,000 miles and it was not stated in the carfax that it was done but it could have been done by the one previous owner themselves or a mechanic that does not report to carfax. I have been going to my mechanic for quite some time that does not report to carfax and does phenomenal work for low cost. I wanna check it before I take it to him though. It looks like the previos owner took good care of the car maintenance wise for seven plus years and as I stated, the serpentine belt is rather new for that mileage. Thanks in advance!

jc 02-05-2012 03:50 PM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
31 Attachment(s)
You would have to remove the top timing belt cover to see the top half of the timing belt. Then you could attemp to crank the engine over by hand with a ratchet to see the bottom half of the belt.

If you are not comfortable with major jobs then I would not attempt this. You would need to remove the motor mount to get at the rear bolts. Maybe a toyo tech could do it without doing this, but I cannot recall if this could be done without removing the motor mount.

I changed my own Timing belt and WP on my 98 Sienna. It was a PITA (Pain in the A$$), but I was able to get it done in three days. I removed the cowl to do so and I changed spark plugs and flushed the brake fluid at the same time with my motive power bleeder. I figured I have everything apart, so it would be easier to do it now.

Some things are not clearly documented in the service manual and you need the know how and proper tools. For instance a common issue is the motor mount bolts siezing and breaking during removal. I had this issue and I spent a good hour saying a few cuss words as I figured out how to remove the broken bolt. Then accidentally I leaned on the bracket and it popped off in my hands which is what I wanted to happen! LOL.

Given your comments, I believe it would be easier to just go ahead and get the timing belt and WP changed by your mechanic. If he is reasonable, then this job shouldn't break your wallet. You can save yourself some money by buying the
OEM parts online and getting them shipped to you even to Canada for cheaper than what your local Toyota Parts dept would be charging you. I paid $140 US for the Timing Belt and WP, where the water pump itself in Canada would be over $200 alone with taxes.

Regards, JC.

jon 02-17-2012 09:46 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
I too purchased an 04 Sienna with 150,000 miles, and found no record of the timing belt ever being replaced. The fear of it breaking and causing catastrophic damage made the decision to replace a necessary one. I have a great mechanic in the Family living in SE Wisconsin, and i'm from IL. i took it up for a weekend and had the timing belt, serpentine belts, pulleys, tensioners, water pump, seals, spark plugs, the works all replaced. i have to say she has never run better. Just bite the bullet and get it done. it will be the last time you have to think about it. I plan on putting 100,000 more miles on this van, and have every intention of driving her into the ground, hopefully 7-8 years from now. Good luck.

joshuambenhase 02-18-2012 10:28 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
Well. We took it took our mechanic and he is taking care of it now. I know it will come back in awesome condition. Just had a quick question for anyone who has done this. When working down into the area and when he got to the "front motor mount bracket," he had an issue getting off. In short, it was like really on there and they could not get off so he had to bust it off and have it replaced. Is this a common problem? I know he knows what he is doing, been doing it for 60 years, just wondering if that was a common problem.

jc 02-18-2012 10:54 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
31 Attachment(s)
The front motor mount bracket is known to have the bolts sieze on there. When I was trying to remove the front mount on my 98, the bolt it broke off. I started cursing and saying to myself WTF!

Then I accidentally leaned on it and then it popped off. Luckily I took the bracket to my buddy's shop and he heated it up and removed the broken piece. I went to the dealership and paid something like $18 for one bolt. I've heard stories of people having to replace the entire bracket for a new one. I got lucky.

Regards, JC.

joshuambenhase 02-21-2012 09:56 AM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
Okay. A little update on our situation. We took our van in this past Thursday to our mechanic to have the water pump and timing belt replaced. Well, we call Saturday to check in on it and he stated that the front motor mount bracket was not able to come off and he had to bust off and replace and could not get part from dealer till Monday. Okay, no big deal. He quoted us about $500 in the beginning and we received a huge shock when he called yesterday stating the vehicle was ready to go. Considering the extra part he needed to replace as gonna be an extra $100, we figured obviously $600 or so. We asked him what the total bill was so we could right a check out and he quickly replied, "$362.86." We were in absolute shock because we don't have the money to do this and had the $500 set aside. So, what do you think? Is this a reasonable price?

jon 02-21-2012 02:28 PM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
Wow, that is cheap. What all did he do. My bill was $600 in parts and $100 in labor. Got to love my uncle, he took a loss for me on labor charges, and gave me his discount on parts. job would have been almost $2,000. I got everything changed, plugs, belts, pulleys, water pump, seals, etc. Be glad you got it all done, now drive that beast for 100,000 miles only changing oil and tires.

happycamper 02-21-2012 06:46 PM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
If he had to bust out the motor mount bracket, then he likely had to deal with broken or siezed bolts. This would be followed by grinding or drilling out the remaining bolt in the tight engine compartment. I don't think $260 labor is unreasonable.

veron 02-21-2012 11:33 PM

Re: Timing Belt/Water Pump
I'm looking into getting timing belt and water pump replaced as well,Toyota quoted me $1200.00 parts and Labor.

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