Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: how to tell if timing chain is bad

asked by on

I have 220 psi of cyl compression not enough power to pull itself out of driveway have random misfire code

My car has 225000 miles.
My car has a manual transmission.

Hello and thank you for contacting YourMechanic. Misfires can be caused by sloppy timing chain, spark plugs and wires not working, injectors not working, or a problem within the engine. To check the timing chain, get a timing light and hook it up to the battery and hook up the inductive pickup to the number 1 spark plug wire. With the engine running, shine the test light onto the harmonic balancer and see if the timing light is steady or if it moves around. If the light moves around, then the timing chain is loose and it needs replaced.

Check the spark plug wires for any spark. Then check the spark plugs for any burn spots or if the spark plug has fuel on it. Check the injectors with the engine running by pulling off the harness to each injector one at a time. If the engine changes tones and stumbles then the injector is working. If there is no change, then the injector may be not working. If the compression to the engine is 220, then there is a good seal to the combustion chamber and it leads to the timing chain, ignition, and fuel to cause a random misfire.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. how to tell if timing chain is bad

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Extremely lean fuel trim

Hi there. After completing an error code download to verify if this is an electrical glitch first, the next step most professional mechanics would complete is the fuel pressure test. This tends to be the source of an across the...

Q: How do you know if its really a timing chain gasket? And how long does it take to repair?

It is more likely that the water pump is leaking from its front seal. The leak will show up from the center of the motor area and will drip off the bottom of the timing cover. The timing cover on...

Q: rough idle and misfiring at stops

Lets start with what the codes mean. P0060 - indicates that there is a network failure to the ECU. One or more control modules are not communicating. This is usually caused by a bad ECU, poor electrical connections from corrosion...

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.