The handbook for my 2002 XG350 states that the service interval for timing
belt is 60,000 miles and then there is as asterisk by it (*) stating that
this service is recomended but not necessary in California. Anyone know
what this is all about? All I have to do is move to California and my
timing belt won't break? I always liked California, but I didn't realize it
had mystical powers.
There are probably better people to respond to this than me, but I think I
know what happened here.
A number of years ago, as people started learning (most of them the hard
way) about this relatively new and expensive item known as the timing belt,
Honda became the first auto company to call this a maintenance item and make
it a required part of standard maintenance. They were also the first to
steadfastly refuse to pay any repair bills that had to do with a broken
Hence, they were also the first to get into trouble with the California AG's
office about complaints about this, since it drove the cost of scheduled
maintenance astronomically higher.
With many other auto makers going to this belt and the problems it was
causing, my guess is that the state of California passed a law not allowing
auto makers to make a timing belt a required maintenance item. That is why
it says what it says in most owners manuals.
But it does not change the fact that, required or not, the belt will break
at some point, and needs to be replaced from time to time. And if you have
an interference engine, required or not, you are looking at a serious repair
bill to rebuild an engine destroyed by such a broken belt.
Just my hunches on this.
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