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You can have a look at the condition of the belt to gauge its condition. But you'll need to have seen quite a number of timing belts to be able to tell. The risk is that when a timing belt snaps, it damages your valves and pistons too. To fix that will require the engine be taken apart and the damaged parts replaced. It's not a cheap thing to do. Timing-...


The key to your mechanic's response about changing the timing belt and water pump "now" is that you have no real indication of the maintenance history of the car. You don't know if it's been changed or not. A timing belt could last for that long, but who knows. The mechanic is giving sound advice because he's trying to help you protect your interests. Do ...


The smoke and being down on power is a concern.. Firstly monitor the coolant level and oil colour on the dipstick and on the bottom of the oil filler cap very carefully. You're checking the coolant far any loss however small. And the bottom of the dipstick & oil filler cap for any white creamy sludge. A cooling system pressure test would be a good ...


If penetrating fluid, time and rocking (as described by Nick C) do not work, you may need to take it to a mechanic who can heat up the plug (usually with a torch) to get it out. With all of the plastics in a modern engine, you don't want to do this yourself as it can be tricky to keep for doing more damage than you are fixing. Good luck!

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