Hi all, I'm getting roped into (against my wishes!) 2 seperate disputes about the plastic crankshaft pulley on a 406 and a 306 HDi. (2 guys at my local pub, only discovered similar problem-different garages, when we were chatting at bar - I retired@65 last year). So far both disputes are at the informal stage, and I'm a go-between. I never learn!
406:manuf2000 65k miles, very gentle low mileage until heavy taxi use in last 3 months. T-belt replaced by good reputation garage, on their recommendation, they "often recommend" new pulley (£90) but didn't press it home.
600 miles later, ticking/rattling for a mile or so, then crank pulley splits. =3 bent valves but not bad otherwise (!) - exchange head cures, no more problems in last 2 months of taxi use. Owner argues garage should have "forced" him into pulley replacement.
my advice to 406 guy: pay up for pulley next time, but he's determined to go to Trading Standards on what constitutes "timing belt replacement and any bits that go with it"
306: manuf2000 50k miles, ordinary use, mature driver, some daily urban commuting as well. Prudent T-belt change suggested by garage after 48k service, he needed car for holiday so returned 1 month later for belt.
Tickety-click 100 miles later going up a hill from a cold start. Irate customer returns to garage, who replace PS pump and aux belt. 400 yards later driving away (typical) from fitment crank-pulley shreds and throws belt. Exhange complete unit due extensive damage top and bottom. £3k bill paid under duress, car released to owner, who claims T-belt change (charged 84 quid) should have spotted dodgy plastic pulley. (note this fitter has since demonstrated to me correct use of belt tension by thumbs and finger etc, and he seems to be OK, so I doubt it was overtension - no noise etc)
My advice to this owner - probable valid claim against garage- PS pump rarely goes, but crankshaft pulley is known HDi weakness and should be changed with every belt change as matter of course. Garage didn't suggest it, and charging for perfectly good PS pump / belt (since recovered and checked out OK) was just morally wrong.
Note: Owner reported the failing pulley's characteristic tick with bonnet closed in writing when returning car, this is the classic sign that you shouldn't miss!
Turn the wheel to left lock, closed bonnet, rev at pedal. Sounds like a loud injector tick. Engine otherwise runs/starts fine. Note it quickly deteriorates into lathe chewing metal noise. This is a tow-in, not drive-in, job once you hear it.
I've had lots of pulley failures in taxi fleets, mainly 406's, but 306's now showing same trait as they approach the 1st belt change. Pug HQ has been insisting crank pulley change at belt change for how long now?
Most stories I've heard on this problem usually involve the 1st garage getting a bad name for belt because the customer invariably goes elswhere, pays same again £80 for pulley and poo-poohs original fitter.
I've never met a customer who didn't throw a wobbly being quoted £15 for a t-belt and £90 for a plastic pulley
I run a 306 myself, now on 3rd belt and 3rd pulley, all fitted together. smooth as silk.
now then, any discussion/comments/suggestions? (other than don't get involved, that is, too late now!)
I thought that once the pulley has been changed for the later redesigned version, you dont have to replace it again. Why are you on your 3rd?
I think case 1 with the 406 who didnt have the pulley changed even though it was suggested should admit defeat; he declined at the time.
Case two, well the garage missed the original fault and misdiagnosed. If I were him I would press for the return of original PS pump and refund for new item. I agree with you that he does have a case.
>Why are you on your 3rd?
a/ I got 5 for nowt (wink wink)b
b/ I trust no-one and no-thing
c/ it adds only 5 minutes to the job
I have heard the new pulley is different, but I wasn't convinced before I retired. Most taxi owner-drivers insist on a pulley now anyways. They're thinking of the missed fares!
The 2nd garage, to their credit, fished the original PS pump out of a bin and let me have a look at it. They also offered to knock the PS cost off the final bill as a "gesture". I ran it on a rear-ended 206 HDi (retirement project) in my back yard for a hour with no probs. (Identical engine as far as I can see, maybe different chip?)
I suppose the PS looked easier to change that the placcy pulley....
I'm looking for a way of convincing customers to just damn well pay the price. It's the familiar story.
How about pricing the belt at at £90 and the pulley at £10. Reverse phsycology?
306 HDi that I dealt with that had shred its cambelt at 78K only suffered from a few smashed rocker arms.....fairly cheap repair in the end.
groups.msn.com/honestjohn - Pictures say a thousand words.....
As someone who has a marked aversion to timing belts, and who much prefers chains, I am always amazed by these debates. The truth of the matter is that all componants have a lifetime use embodied in them, but it is variable. Very variable with these belts. If some componants fail, e.g. a door handle, its annoying but no big deal to fix. Nothing much hangs on it.
Timing belts are very critical and locked into this 'variability factor'.
Where does this leave one? The only sensible thing is to replace the lot. Belt, pulleys tensioners and water pumps if needed. The cost difference isn't much in the grand scheme of things, and one must see that worrying about it for years to come is pointless. On most cars pay £70-100 more, and do the lot.
Why garages who are vunerable to unset customers don't insist in doing the lot amazes me. They should insists, and get the customer to waiver their 'winge rights' if they don't.
Best buy a chain car, do oil changes at 6K, and then relax.
The garage new about crank pulley fault(why suggest timing belt change) . Its is on most bulletin boards for citroen and PUG cars . The timeing belt need not be changed till 100,000 miles . The garage has misdiagnosed .My 2.0 hdi xsara made the noise , I looked it up on the internet , advised get crank pulley changed (my car at this point was on 80,000miles). Done this all ok .Car is now on 89 and getting ready for belt change during the summer nearer the 100,000 mark. Timing belt usually never fails unless the metal from Crank pulley gets into the timing belt covers. 45000 miles for for belt change ,was this a HDi .(i think in manual it says something like 100,000 miles or 8years I think)
2nd garage should be sued for mis diagnose .Seems these two garages are incompantent.
HDi belt = 100,000 miles this belt I have never heard of failing on own.
Crank Pulley 30,000 miles to 80,000 these do fail ,which can cause failure of timing belt.
The question is . PSA/Citroen now about this , should the manufacture do a recall ???
Moved my 306 into the drive with the temp display showing -1 celcius and could hear a ticking/rattling noise (Never heard it before but I keep an ear out after reading threads like this)
Went to the shops later on when it had warmed to 3 celcius (!)(There was more cloud cover, and the ice had melted. It wasn't my display mucking about.) and the noise seemed to have gone, well I couldn't hear it when I got back...