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Yaris T Sport Broke Down - Poss Cam Chain Failure


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Hello

My girlfriends T sport broke down on the M1 the other day. AA came out and said the cambelt has gone, but I was under the impression the car has a steel chain (unlike a rubber belt on my Honda).

The car lost power around 70-80MPH, before coming to a complete stop, there was a high pitched whining noise then the engine began to whirr, before losing all power. The car doesn't start any more.

The car itself is a 2001 model, with full FTSH and has only covered 49k miles.

Is the engine a non-interference model?

Any advice or relevant info is appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

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Most Toyota engines run with a cam-chain these days due to the reduced maintenance required. Normally designed so even if the tensioner fails for some reason then the chain can't skip. Would just lead to noise and excessive wear.

If the cam chain went you'd lose all power immediately (without the cams turning the valves will be competely out of sequence and the pistons will be chewing on the valves)

Sound unlikely but not impossible. If the cam chain has gone I would have guessed it was a secondary failure caused by something else but not too sure. How was she driving it before it failed? Caning it or cruising?

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Pretty sure it's got a belt.

Didn't think many car's, if any, ran cam chains.

More car manufacturers are now going to timing chains, the Yaris being one of them. Maintenance free and more reliable.

I’d be surprised if it was the timing chain, I’ve never heard of one ‘going’ before.

To be sure, a trip to Mr T may be in order as it could be something totally different.

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Bad luck... Timing belt went on a mate's Alfa 147 the other week (well before it was due to be replaced on the service schedule) - he was over a grand to fix it but his engine just died with a crunchy, rattly noise. The was quoted over 2 grand by our local alfa dealer :eek:

I'm not trying to scare you, just let you know that the sound of his and the sound of yours were different (as described).

Let us know how you get on!

Alan

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Thanks for the replies.

She wasn't red lining the car at the time, just cruising in fifth@ around 80 MPH.

We will find out on Wednesday, sounds like you could be right, the chain is very unlikely to break (the Toyota technician said this to). The car doesn't turn over at all.

I'll post a what the technician has to say when we find out.

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I was going down the M6 around 80ish and the cam belt went on my clio (P-Reg, My 1st ever car!) Glad I was in the RAC as they towed me home. The engine was in a bad state and it cost me (Well my parents!) £500 :P , a few weeks later white smoke was pouring out of the back. There was a crack in the Oil thingy (Very technical I am! :P ) So the guy at the garage said to get a new car which I did and it my YARIS!

It's a quality car, I was just a little miffed that I only had my other car for 3 months before it knacked up!

A great start to motoring hey!!

I just hope that the yaris can last a little longer :thumbsup: !

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It'd be difficult to tell without being able to fiddle about with the engine but my gut feeling tells me there's been a seizure high up in the engine (cylinder head). The cranks still turning the chain wich is still trying to power a seized cam-shaft (?) which is what was causing the lack of power initially noticed. Eventually the tension on the chain is too great and the chain snaps.

Couple of queries that puzzle me:

1) Engines done nearly 50,000 miles before failure but the failure mode is striking me as a fast failure.

2) The engine failed from fairly constant speed.

The failure is sounding like a maintenance problem or caused by some sort of abuse at the time or shortly before. From what you describe above she was driving at constant speed which rules out an abuse problem.

Was the car due for a service or just been in for one?

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Here's an update, mechanics said cam is fine (What was the AA man diagnosing?!!)

Black Knight, you may be right. Garage said there was no water left in the coolant tank, they tried putting water back in and starting the engine, but they said water was sprayed back out, maybe its due a new head gasket now they said...

The car was serviced by Toyota back in May 2005.

Another update will come tommorrow.

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This brings back bad memories!

My wifes Daewoo Lanos! had a major problem like this and ended up having a new top end fitted, they admitted part of the problem and charged no labour but it still cost us about 500 quid i think for parts! Yours is a different problem i am sure but i still remember the gutted feeling we both had. Its ok now.................she has a Corolla GS :-)

Good Luck with it and hope the Dominican Republic gets to see you :-)

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Here's an update, mechanics said cam is fine (What was the AA man diagnosing?!!)

As mentioned in previous posts, the chances of the cam failing are slim to none (thank goodness for chains)

Never heard of a head gasket going on a Yaris, a Rover yes, but not a Toyota. Maybe it does happen!

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engine "could have hydrauliced" when gasket goes water from the water jacket fills the cylinder, enough untill the piston goes up and cant compress the water :P poof goes your con rods... a maybe though........

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Right this makes things a bit clearer.

How many miles had it done since it's service in May and has it done any long distance runs between then and failure.

I'm almost willing to bet money that when it was serviced they screwed up replacement of the LLC and got an air-lock in the coolant system. This will have meant that when it cleared there would be almost no coolant in the engine. The water temp sensor won't even be in the coolant so won't be able to flag up an overheat. The temperatures will have got so high that the cylinder head has warped and the gasket's no longer sealing.

This is where the high pitched whirring noise came from since there'll be next to no compression on the engine.

Sounds like they'll have to change head and gasket.

Not your fault but a lesson for next time is always check your fluid levels after servicing. I've had some dreadful experiences with Rover dealers in the past

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Hey guys, what's happened is there was a leak somewhere, yet to be pin pointed. They are waiting for the head gasket to come before reassembling and finding out there the leak is.

Thankfully, no valve or piston damage was done. Will need a new heaad gasket now. The mechanics said that the water loss had casued the block to overheat, thus losing all compression ergo no power.

£400 to fix, majority of this is labour, they said they had difficulties in getting the valves to sit right but will have everythingback to new next tuesday.

Black Knight - The car has done no more than 3000 miles since the last service.

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The head gasket is being replaced, the head is being milled slightly.

Even more bad news today, they finally put everything back together but the car had a lumpy idle.

After closer examination on the bottom end, the piston rings have been distorted from the heat, now they need replacing. It's turned into a ~£600 job now.

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  • 3 months later...

This explanation fits my Yaris diesel symptoms exactly. As I am facing a huge bill to rectify, I would really appreciate some advice, particularly if negligent servicing could be the cause. The story is still unfolding, and I can post this later, but for now I really need some help in understanding the following:

- what is LLC? and how could this replacement be 'screwed up'

- what is the difference in probability between: coolant loss from a leaking water pump leading to overheating, then head warping and gasket failure, versus: gasket failure leading to pressurisation of the cooling system, leading to water loss, then to overheating and head warping?

- I would advise that no steam or water loss was ever noticed (the water header tank remained full) and the high water temp warning light didn't show, but the in car heating has not worked since the last service in the summer (though this was only apparent from October). The engine seemed to run as normal (done 80,000 miles, less than 4yrs old) - but journeys are mostly less than 15 miles a time.

Many thanks for any insights.

Right this makes things a bit clearer.

How many miles had it done since it's service in May and has it done any long distance runs between then and failure.

I'm almost willing to bet money that when it was serviced they screwed up replacement of the LLC and got an air-lock in the coolant system. This will have meant that when it cleared there would be almost no coolant in the engine. The water temp sensor won't even be in the coolant so won't be able to flag up an overheat. The temperatures will have got so high that the cylinder head has warped and the gasket's no longer sealing.

This is where the high pitched whirring noise came from since there'll be next to no compression on the engine.

Sounds like they'll have to change head and gasket.

Not your fault but a lesson for next time is always check your fluid levels after servicing. I've had some dreadful experiences with Rover dealers in the past

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