Your Nissan’s engine may be equipped with either a steel timing chain or a synthetic rubber timing belt-check your owner’s manual to be sure. The timing chain is maintenance-free. The timing belt, however, is prone to wear and deterioration as the vehicle ages. Because the timing belt is under a protective cover, it is impossible to perform a visual inspection to determine its condition. It is therefore recommended that the timing belt be replaced as a part of a long-term maintenance program-usually between 96,000 km and 168,000 km.
The timing belt is a vital engine component that coordinates the internal operation of the engine. Should the timing belt fail, this internal coordination, or timing, is destroyed. The result may be that the intake and exhaust valves interfere with the proper functioning of the pistons and cause severe engine damage that could cost thousands of dollars to repair. Replacement of the timing belt at the recommended interval is one of t he most important maintenance items to perform.