: Broken timing belt

08-02-13, 11:01 PM
Hi all,
2000 catera. Bought the car in 02 with 15k miles. I have driven it to 240k miles loving every mile. I did the timing belt myself at 120k. Today it snapped. I pushed it too far. I repair all the cars in my family and coincidently just did timing belts on my son's civic and his girlfriend's neon in the past month. Also had to replace the fuel pump and tie rod ends on the cat in june so i have been busy. My timing belt was next, just didn't get to it in time. Anyway, can anyone lead me to a good thread or give me a detailed opinion how to proceed. I would assume bent valves, so will have to remove the heads. Any advice, detailed instructions or things to look out for would be appreciated.

Very happy catera owner for 11 years.

08-03-13, 01:18 AM
My opinion?
Worn out interference motor = Replace
Be warned that many times the new engine will kill the old transmission.
Looks like about 1200 for a used engine

08-03-13, 01:51 AM
Be warned that many times the new engine will kill the old transmission.
Um...no.....No they don't

08-03-13, 02:02 AM
You're looking at repairing/replacing both heads and their valves, maybe some pistons too. Lots of parts and labor. Your best bet is to swap the engine. CTS 3.2 liter engines are available and are practically an exact fit. You'll need to swap a few items from your Catera's engine to the new one and it'll have all the updates to our engine. Other than the extra 200 cc displacement they're identical.



http://www.ebay.com/itm/03-04-CADILLAC-CTS-ENGINE-3-2L-VIN-N-8TH-DIGIT-125534-/221210034687?pt=Motors_Car_Truck_Parts_Accessories&fits=Year%3A2003%7CMake%3ACadillac%7 CModel%3ACTS&hash=item33812541ff&vxp=mtr

08-03-13, 08:07 AM
Thanks for the advice folks, but the $, labor (time) and risk to replace the engine on a catera with 240,000 miles is questionable. I bet it would be 2 grand or more by the time I do the belt, gaskets etc. Also, as with all cats, there is other stuff I need to do to it soon, like control arms/bushings, rotors, pads. And who knows how long the tranny will last with 240k mile on it. I can buy a low mileage catera for <$2,000. So I am going to at least try to get some life out of this motor if I can get away with 4 or 500 bucks. (The car is basically in pretty fine shape). Lets see: HG-$35, timing belt kit $150 (without wp), water pump $35, head bolts $25, VC gaskets $35, EXH Gasket $8, 4 Cam Seals $20, Various sealants hoses and belts etc probably another $50. The wild card is reconditioning the head, how much valve damage and cost. This I would need to go to a machine shop. So lets figure $120 each ????? Cha-ching!!!!!!600 BUCKS which is an optimistic estimate. And that's doing it on the cheap, reusing intake gaskets etc. Add in another $500 for control arms/rotors/pads, and I am at $1100. Wow, so maybe I just figured it out. After 11 happy years, (yes, a lot of busted knuckles and tears too) may be time to say good bye......... I really have got to think hard about this.EX $150 HeaG

08-03-13, 07:18 PM
Well, decided it doesn't cost anything to look before deciding. Started the process today to get the heads off to bring them in for a quote. Almost ready to take them off with the intake, resonator, pulleys, tensioners, TB covers front and back, valve covers, cam sprockets all removed. I think I have 3 more things to remove before the heads, and I could use any advice. These next steps look pretty rough to do so please help with your experiences. It's 1) Long coolant pipe running to the rear on the passenger side. How do you attack it. 2)exhaust manifolds, disconnect from head as advised in shop manual (looks really tight) or disconnect at exhaust pipe and remove the head with manifolds connected as some have suggested. 3)that stupid thermostat pipe bolt that goes through the lift bracket. Almost impossible as I recall last time I did it. Can't remember if I removed the PS res and hoses. I hope to hear from the "experienced" souls who have removed their heads. Thanks

08-04-13, 01:46 PM
Could really use some advice here. Got the two coolant pipes off, and successfully removed the head on passenger side. Two valves definitely bent and stuck open. Small nick in the piston but looks OK. The rest "look" OK but won't know till they are pressure tested. Drivers side is a different story. I'm kind of stuck. I've disconnected the exhaust pipe, but unlike the right side, the air pipe bends around the PS pump and I don't think it will come out. So I removed the lower heat shield and 3 of the bolts on the upper. Another one is hidden behind the manifold. So I can't get at the air pipe bolts under the heat shield to disconnect the air pipe. What now? Remove the exhaust completely so I can get the HS and air pipe off and pull the head with manifold? Remove the PS pump and try to pull it as is with the air pipe attached like the right side? Please, someone must have done this.......Thanks

08-04-13, 03:39 PM
You're more courageous than me. I would cut my losses. If you've gone that long, consider yourself lucky.

08-05-13, 10:06 AM
Well, I guess nobody did this. Anyway, I figured it out. Took off the PS pump and disconnected the air pipe at the rubber hose. Driver side head came out with manifold and air pipe attached. Off to the machine shop. Hope this helps someone........KLM

08-22-13, 04:43 PM
Done. Replaced all 24 valves, seals, TB, tensioner, pulleys, WP, head gaskets, VC gaskets, plugs, drive belt, etc. Running "very" good. 190 lbs compression in all 6 +/- 5 lbs.
241,000 miles in, hopefully another 50-100,00.

08-23-13, 10:45 PM
Congrats on the repairs. I don't have a viable place to do something like that so I take my Catera from Catskill NY to the Bronx (a 2 hour trip one way) where my cousin has a repair shop. I buy the parts and he does the work. He's also a Catera Sport owner with a white 2000 so he's familiar with the troubles. He owned a maroon '98 too. So far he's replaced my timing belt and tensioner with all the pulleys, the radiator, replaced the front control arm and swaybar bushings with polyurethane ones, installed the '04 GTO brake calipers, and the repaired EBTCM.

When you're ready to do the suspension work read my posts regarding the suspension and brake upgrades. I'm referring to polyurethane bushings and dual caliper front brakes. They're just as labor as replacing the originals, cost fractionally more, and work better than stock. I figure if you're going to do the jobs anyway why not improve the car, right? Follow the links and learn more.


08-24-13, 12:48 AM
I really like stories with happy endings :)