1997 Ponitiac

last week my car wont start, thought it was crank sensor, had it towed, mechanic called and said it was timing gear and chain after doing compression
check. Compression was 90/80/70/90 he fixed timing chain and is now saying it has bent valve. i heard this is non-interference engine! how could this happen. i dont have $1200 to fix this can i drive it like this?
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dreamweaverc

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You can drive it like that, with a couple of warnings. First, if the engine has a persistent misfire (the "check engine" light will probably come on in that case), don't drive it. You could damage the catalytic converter. Second, if the engine runs okay you can drive it but watch the oil level religiously. Check it *every* time you fill the tank, without fail, for at least the next 6 months. A bent valve can lead to high oil consumption either immediately or a while down the road. If an exhaust valve is bent, it will probably burn and start consuming oil like crazy. That isn't a fatal problem right away but can lead to running out of oil if you aren't watching carefully, and that means a lot more than $1200 to repair.
As long as the engine runs okay and you can keep the oil level up, you don't absolutely need to do any more. If the oil consumption starts rising over the next few weeks or months, the bent valve is burning and you will have to do something soon - it will get worse until the engine begins misfiring.
People in a Pontiac group will be able to tell you more.
Mike
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I've seen American rebuild engine for a lot less than this or pull one out of a junk yard for cheap.
My second car was a Plymouth Sports Fury (1966?) , it ran out of oil before it ran out of gas. That V8 was tough, keeps on going and consuming oil (before EPA or smock check, when gas was 25 cent per gallon!), didn't care bout bent valves either. Don't know about your four banger though.
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Hi thanks for all the advise. the engine is a 2.2 Liter can anyone tell me if it is a non-interfence engine? Pontiac 199
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dreamweaverc

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