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CostHelper > Cars  > Replacing a Timing Chain

Replacing a Timing Chain Cost


How Much Does Replacing a Timing Chain Cost?

 
low costLabor: $75-$120average costTiming Chain: $50-$250+high costProfessional Replacement: $300-$1,000
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A timing chain is a major component used to keep an engine's timing in sync, and replacing it is often an essential part of automobile maintenance. Timing chains typically last longer than timing belts and are preferred by some automakers for their durability. Most experts recommend replacing a timing chain every 100,000 miles or so. Timing chains might need replacement if there is excessive vibration or if the vehicle's ignition timing seems off.

Typical costs:

  • Hiring a mechanic to replace a timing chain typically costs $300-$1,000, depending on the make and model of the vehicle, its age and whether the work is performed at a dealership or an independent shop.
  • Purchased separately, a timing chain typically costs $50-$250 or more. For example, Ford uses a timing chain on its 4.6-liter V-8, which is found in several popular models, including the F-150 pickup. A timing chain for a 2004 F-150 with the 4.6-liter V-8 costs $53 from national retailer Advance Auto Parts[1] .
  • Timing chains are often sold in kits which contain additional smaller parts that can be used in the repair. Prices for kits vary considerably, from $20 to $1,000,as replacement parts for some original equipment manufacturers simply cost more to build than for others. Some kits might be built using expensive materials, adding to the cost. For example, Iowa-based Northern Auto Parts sells the Buick High Energy Timing Set[2] , which fits various General Motors vehicles built from 1962-1980, for $26; online retailer Rockauto.com sells the CLOYES 90393SA[3] , which fits the 2002-2003 Jeep Liberty, for $406. One owner of a 1993 Nissan 240SX[4] asked an Internet forum what the typical cost for a timing chain for that car was, and the answers ranged from $200 to $400. By comparison, in a similar forum, an owner of a 2004 Cadillac SRX[5] was quoted prices of about $300.
  • Expect to pay $75-$120 per hour for labor, depending on whether the work is performed at a dealership or an independent shop. It depends on the model, but generally the job takes three-five hours. Costs can increase considerably, sometimes up to $700 or more, if the timing chain breaks before being replaced.
  • Timing-chain failure seldom occurs when the car is still under warranty, so customers will usually have to pay for the replacement themselves. Dealerships typically charge more, but their technicians are intimately familiar with the brand of cars they work on and they use factory parts. Independent repair shops may charge less, but they may use aftermarket parts, which are manufactured to factory specifications, but are not made by the automaker.
Related articles: Replacing a Timing Belt, Replacing a Water Pump, Replacing a Transmission, Replacing a Clutch, Car Battery, Car Rental

What should be included:
  • A timing chain kit should include the kit itself; any necessary seals, bolts and sprockets, and any other necessary accessories. A mechanic will be expected to remove and replace the chain, along with the aforementioned seals, bolts, sprockets, and accessories.
  • If possible, it is best to get an estimate before approving any work. However, if the timing chain has failed, the car will not run and this might not be an option.
Additional costs:
  • The water pump is sometimes replaced along with the timing chain. Normally, water pump replacement is typically about $300; however, since the technician is already replacing the timing chain, labor costs may not be charged, and the customer would only be charged for the part, which is typically about $100.
Discounts:
  • Some repair shops might offer a discount on repairs for regular customers, usually about 10%.
  • Discounts can also come from the manufacturer itself. For example, Ford offers periodic rebates[6] on a variety of routine maintenance.
  • Timing chain replacement is a difficult job best left to professional mechanics or those with advanced auto-repair experience. Those who choose to do it themselves will need to set aside two-six hours. A certified master technician provides a step-by-step guide[7] to replacing a timing chain.
Shopping for replacing a timing chain:
  • The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, a non-profit trade group for technicians and other automotive service professionals, has a searchable directory[8] of certified shops.
  • Several online retailers, including TechChoiceParts.com[9] and RockAuto.com[10] , sell timing chains. Timing chains are also available at national retailers, including Advance Auto Parts[11] and Napa Auto Parts[12] .
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments
hhr 2011
Amount: $1,500.00
Posted by: carolynboyd in athens, TN.Posted: December 3rd, 2017 09:12AM
Brand: hhrMechanic: independnet
Hours of Labor: not sure
is this to high for timing chain in 2011 hhr with 82000 miles
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timing chain and gears
Amount: $1,300.00
Posted by: felix in lehigh acres, FL.Posted: November 7th, 2017 09:11AM
Brand: gmMechanic: self
Hours of Labor: 10 hrs
I did it my self with help from a friend,spend $900.00 in parts,plus $400.00 paid to my friend
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Timing Chain Replacement
Amount: $500.00
Posted by: [email protected] in San Leandro, CA.Posted: November 6th, 2017 04:11PM
Hours of Labor: 5
Done by mechanic who often charges lower prices for the area
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f250 ford 5.4 engine
Amount: $1,600.00
Posted by: a user in syracuse, NY.Posted: June 23rd, 2017 09:06AM
Brand: Mechanic: independent shop
timing chain plastic guide broke off. $1,000 labor $430 for timing chain kit, $30 oil change and the rest in tax.
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Variable Valve timing solenoid ( V V T Solenoid)
Amount: $73.00
Posted by: Charley the home mechanic in Danville, IL.Posted: April 12th, 2017 04:04AM
Brand: NAPAMechanic: Self
Hours of Labor: 1 hour
My 2006 GMC Envoy with 4.2 engine and 185,000 miles on it started making a knocking sound and research indicated it was the V V T Solenoid was bad and that the screens on it were plugged with oil sludge. It is the least of the expenses when replacing a timing chain is considered. Not all noises of upper engine in GMC 4.2 are not a bad timing chain. First time replacing the V V T Solenoid on any car or SUV so it was a learning experience but the folks on YouTube videos were very helpful in teaching me how to replace the Solenoid. It was a learning curve for me since I am 68 yrs old and don't work on cars much anymore.
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Timing chain replacement
Amount: $1,980.00
Posted by: Mcmooju in Lansing, MI.Posted: March 15th, 2017 06:03PM
Hours of Labor: 3+ days including time to get parts.
2008 Saturn vue
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nissan 2.4 k
Amount: $150.00
Posted by: Patrick Thedford in pensacola, FL.Posted: January 20th, 2017 06:01AM
Brand: Domestic GasketsMechanic: Patrick Thedford
Hours of Labor: UN GODLY
I am putting a timing chain kit in GF altima it and replacing some bent valves,plan on lapping the valves my self ( Unless you have a extremely well tooled garage please do not attempt this t home!!)
I could have swapped motors easier
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2005 mustang gt. Timing chain
Amount: $2,000.00
Posted by: [email protected] in Glen burnie, MD.Posted: December 17th, 2016 02:12PM
Hours of Labor: 1 day
Did i get rippd off ? Being a girl, im wondering
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toming chain replacement
Amount: $1,150.00
Posted by: a user in Houston, TX.Posted: November 29th, 2016 10:11PM
Brand: 2003 dodge ramMechanic:
Hours of Labor: 4 days
A friend charge $600 labor parts $550.00 helped him a little
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Timing change replacement
Amount: $1,500.00
Posted by: Starbuoy in Bronx, NY.Posted: September 20th, 2016 02:09PM
Hours of Labor: 3 day
Engine want dead
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Timing Chain Replacement
Amount: $1,800.00
Posted by: BJ Pe in Bethlehem, PA.Posted: July 10th, 2016 10:07AM
Brand: chevy HHRMechanic: Dealer
Hours of Labor: pretty many 10 < >
Have 120,000 on a Chevy HHR want to keep it as long as possible. Decided to get timing chain replaced before it broke. I heard a little rattle when I would start her up. I did not want to be a day late and a dollar short. $ 1,200.00 just timing chains and labor in a GM kit. I said do the water pump also. HOLY #[email protected]& final bill $1,800.00 with the 10% taken off. OK first major bill on it
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timng chain replacement
Amount: $2,000.00
Posted by: genevieve fabela in marysville, CA.Posted: March 19th, 2016 07:03AM
Brand: toyota corollaMechanic: some guy off of criags list
Hours of Labor: 16
#1 i sent $1000 dollars to this i had never met to go look at these cars to see if they were any good.
#2 he bought the 2001 toyota corolla for $700 with the remaining $300 he boght timing chain and water pump
#3 at the time of purchase the SELLER said the car didnot pass smog it needed a catalyc contertor. that part is $250-$505
#4 bottom line is this guy wants to charge me $1000 for labor and those few items... is that far the chian nor the water pump did not ned to be changed . and i just smogged my car it didnt neeed a cati either....
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Water pump and timing replacement
Amount: $300.00
Posted by: sherena in dallas, TX.Posted: February 24th, 2016 04:02PM
Hours of Labor: 72
I don understand why it would be $300 but I guess its because the make and model of my car 2001 Pontiac.
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Timing chain replacement and gasket
Amount: $3.00
Posted by: [email protected] in North Brunswick, NJ.Posted: February 14th, 2016 05:02AM
Hours of Labor: I'm sure at the dealership
I had a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder and watch the oil pressure sensor was going to loan while idling I brought it into the dealership and they had replaced though oil sensor as soon as I got it back I noticed that the oil pressure went again to low I brought it back and they informed me that it was the timing chain and gaskets but the job was going to cost 2000/2400 to do
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2004 Ford F150
Amount: $350.00
Posted by: José33444 in Seattle, WA.Posted: February 12th, 2016 11:02AM
Brand: FordMechanic: My self
Hours of Labor: 24
Bought the timing chain on ebay for 200 i had to pay 150 for the tools to replace it
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Timing chain replacement
Amount: $2.00
Posted by: Spark Plug in Beckley, WV.Posted: December 30th, 2015 05:12PM
Hours of Labor: 17
1500.00 to 2000.00 is a reasonable price.
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timing chain and water pump replacement
Amount: $1,700.00
Posted by: pooya in Dearborn, MI.Posted: November 19th, 2015 11:11AM
Hours of Labor: 12h
2007 Cadillac sts
Mileage 104000
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233,000 miles and timing chain kaput
Amount: $2,500.00
Posted by: Randy Craftmyer in Berkeley, CA.Posted: July 9th, 2015 12:07AM
Brand: ToyotaMechanic:
Hours of Labor: 2 days
Had one quote at $1400.00 Two others at $2,400 and $2,500.00.
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Engine Replaced Due to Timing Chain Break
Amount: $3,400.00
Posted by: TX DEDA in Dallas, TX.Posted: January 8th, 2015 09:01AM
Brand: Ford F-250Mechanic: Personal Friend-Mechanic Shop
Hours of Labor: 1 week
I had bought a 2005 Ford F250 brand new gasoline engine truck. AS of May 2014, engine blew. Ran great minimal maintenance done on it however. Timing chain broke so engine had to be replaced. Replaced engine. Bought used engine from a parts house. Cost 2,200.00 for engine, $754.00 for misc. parts and for replacing, and 450.00 to rental of a car for 2 weeks. All in all, VERY COSTLY repair! To boot, this engine did the same thing. Same amount needed to replace again!! I'm done gotta let her go.
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timing chain replacement
Amount: $2,000.00
Posted by: Chris Clingshoff in Discovery Bay, CA.Posted: September 24th, 2014 03:09PM
2001 F150 timing chain, I'm getting quoted a grand more everyone on this site, why is that?
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Engine replacement of 1995Honda Prelude Si
Amount: $2,000.00
Posted by: Carter in Fort Worth, TX.Posted: August 22nd, 2014 08:08AM
Brand: MfgMechanic: Honda
Hours of Labor: 16
My question is if you get a engine replaced why would they want to charge you again to replace the timing chain?
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External Resources:
  1.  shop.advanceautoparts.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_Timing-Chain-S-A--Gear_1828...
  2.  www.northernautoparts.com/ProductModelDetail.cfm?ProductModelId=16058
  3.  www.rockauto.com/catalog/raframecatalog.php?catalog=47&partnum=90393SA&a=FR47-90393SA-6...
  4.  www.cadillacforums.com/forums/cadillac-srx-first-generation-forum-2004/215891-2004-timi...
  5.  www.cadillacforums.com/forums/cadillac-srx-first-generation-forum-2004/215891-2004-timi...
  6.  owner.ford.com/servlet/ContentServer?pagename=Owner/Page/ServiceCouponsPage
  7.  autorepair.about.com/cs/doityourself/a/aa042702a.htm
  8.  www.ase.com/Landing-Pages/Car-Owners/Find-a-Repair-Shop.aspx
  9.  www.techchoiceparts.com/categories/engine-timing/timing-belt-or-chain-kit
  10.  www.rockauto.com/catalog/raframecatalog.php?catalog=47&partnum=90393SA&a=FR47-90393SA-6...
  11.  shop.advanceautoparts.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/PartSearchCmd?storeId=10151&catalog...
  12.  www.napaonline.com/Catalog/Result.aspx?Ntt=timing+chain&Ntk=Keyword&Nty=1&Dn=0&D=timing...
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