[200q20v] Suspension rebuild and timing belt service

Bernie Benz b.m.benz at prodigy.net
Sat Jul 14 13:15:18 EDT 2001

Thanks for the response Taka,

Concerning serious matters such as this, it is hard for me to keep a
straight face, inasmuch as I have a reputation to uphold as the contranian.
Hard work, but someone has to do it, right?

In reality, I do pretty much follow my "Don't fix it if it ain't broke!"
philisophy.  When searching for causes of the excessive negative camber in
the front of the 44 chassis, I went so far as to remove a lower control arm
to inspect the inner bushing, because Bentley says that this is a problem
bushing.  No obvious or measurable problem.  To eliminate the possibility of
elastermeric creep, I removed the rubber bushing, rotated it 180 degrees
before reinstalling it.  Result: No change in a very accurately measured DIY
camber measurement.  At this point I forget if this was done on the 5K at
240K miles or the 200 at 110K, but both are still good 40 or 50K later.

I do not change timing belts at regular mileage intervals.  But I do inspect
them for fatigue cracks at the root of the teeth, the principle failure
mode, whenever I'm in there.  The TB industry made a tooth profile change
to improve this about 1990 which was reflected in the 200 models.

I could go on, but I don't want to diswade you from doing what makes you
feel good.  To each his own opinion!  You don't mind hearing mine, just for
fun, do you?


> From: "TM" <t44tq at mindspring.com>
> Date: Sat, 14 Jul 2001 12:18:16 -0400
> To: "Bernie Benz" <b.m.benz at prodigy.net>, "Phil Rose" <pjrose at frontiernet.net>
> Cc: "200q20V mailing list" <200q20v at audifans.com>
> Subject: RE: [200q20v] Suspension rebuild and timing belt service
> In all seriousness Bernie, how do you answer the concern of
> bushings that appear fine on the outside, but upon removal and
> inspection, have failed? This has been seen several times on these
> cars.
> The cost of removing and inspecting these bushings and then not
> replacing them is rather ridiculous, is it not?
> The reason I'm doing all of this at once is that I eliminate the
> possibility of it failing a short period after I do all of the other
> work. While this is, admittedly, a waste of time and money, it results
> in a virtually new car. Suspension bushings do wear out over time,
> and with me putting about 18k/yr. on the car, I don't want to deal with
> the problem on multiple occasions.
> Especially with heavier wheels and tires and stiffer suspension, the
> bushings are subjected to much greater forces than stock.
> If you're of the school that thinks that all OEM is fine and there is no
> need to do stuff until it actually breaks, fine. By performing preventative
> maintenance, I can control my expenses by doing work when I budget allows,
> rather than reacting to a breakdown, which may occur at an inopportune
> moment.
> You'll have to excuse me for posting such a simple request- I prefer to
> follow a much more extensive maintenance schedule than you.
> Taka
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