Ford Timing Chain Kit Buyer's Guide
- A timing chain ensures the synchronicity of the camshaft and the crankshaft.
- A timing chain kit is a package that includes timing chain(s) and all other parts necessary for a chain replacement.
- A timing chain kit may include timing chain(s), cam phasers, washers, tensioners, guide rails, and many more.
- Ford has operated its own parts division named Motorcraft since the 1970s, after replacing its initial OEM parts manufacturer Autolite.
- Other Ford suppliers include Flex-N-Gate, NHK Spring, Valeo Electric and Electronic Systems, Autoliv, and more.
- Keep in mind that there are two kinds of timing chain kits you can find in the market: original equipment manufacturer (OEM) timing chain kits and original equipment (OE) replacements.
- OEM timing chains come from a company that received official authorization from Ford.
- OE replacement timing chains get manufactured by brands with no direct affiliation to Ford.
Considered as one of the world’s leading and biggest car manufacturers, Ford helped shape America’s land travel. The Blue Oval was founded in 1903 in Detroit, Michigan. Its success traces back to its earliest models like the Model A, which promised better means of travel with its distinct design and capability.
Now, Ford is very-much well-known for its strong presence in the truck and SUV segments. The F-Series trucks are a massive hit not just in the US, but in all other parts of the world. It also shares a heritage in the American car racing scene, even up to this day with its Mustang and GT performance vehicles.
No matter how powerful your F-150 or Mustang is, it won’t matter if the timing chain is loose or faulty as you could lose a considerable amount of engine power and efficiency. Here’s a guide to help you shop for Ford timing chain kits.
What is a timing chain kit
A timing chain ensures the synchronicity of the camshaft and the crankshaft. It is important that the crankshaft and the camshaft follow the proper timing to ensure optimum power and best fuel efficiency. A timing chain kit is a package that includes timing chain(s) and all other parts necessary for a chain replacement. This is a great deal as you’ll want to make sure you get the best out of your chain replacement by securing all other parts around it.
What comes in a timing chain kit
The parts included in a timing chain kit may vary depending on the price. A somewhat complete kit may include:
- Timing chain(s)
- Cam phasers
- Cam phaser bolts
- VVT solenoid gaskets
- Guide rails
- Tensioner arms
- Crankshaft sprocket/gear/cassette
- Timing cover seal
- Water pump
- Oil pump
Who manufactures genuine Ford parts?
Ford has operated its own parts division named Motorcraft since the 1970s, after replacing its initial OEM parts manufacturer Autolite. Motorcraft designs parts not only for Ford but also for Lincoln and Mercury. Apart from Motorcraft, Ford also has other main suppliers for other parts which are:
- Flex-N-Gate for door hinges and arms
- NHK Spring for suspension stabilizer linkages
- U-Shin for steering columns
- Valeo Electric and Electronic Systems for starter mechanisms
- Webasto Roof & Components for sunroofs
- Summit Plastics for instrument panel trims and components
- Dee Zee for running boards
- Warn Industries for axle assemblies
- Chaidneme for exhaust system components
- Autoliv for airbags
OEM vs. OE Replacement Ford timing chain kit
Are you looking forward to buying a 2006 Ford Expedition timing chain kit but don’t know which to choose? Keep in mind that there are two kinds of timing chain kits you can find in the market: original equipment manufacturer (OEM) timing chain kits and original equipment (OE) replacements. These two differ in terms of which company manufactured the parts.
OEM timing chains are those that come from the company that’s authorized by Ford. Only the parts from the authorized supplier receive the Ford brand label and usually go for much higher price tags than their OE counterparts.
On the flip side, OE replacement timing chains are parts manufactured by brands with no direct affiliation to Ford. These are independent brands whose expertise is to build close OEM-grade parts by examining the actual OEM components. The number of brands competing in the market makes the prices for OE timing chain kits lower and much more enticing for consumers.
Tips on How to Get the Right Ford Timing Chain Kit
The timing chain is among the parts that functions to make the engine run. The chain provides a link between the crankshaft and the camshaft as well as proper timing-which then prompt the movement of pistons and valves to power the engine. As time goes on, the chain may loosen from regular wear and will have to be replaced. It is important to pick the right Ford timing chain kit in order to match the performance of the original timing chain in your vehicle. Below are some tips:
Choose the right timing chain fit
Understanding the different construction of timing chain available in the market is a vital step when buying for replacement. You have to understand that every engine is different and auto manufacturers have their own specifications when it comes to the arrangement of elements within the engine compartment. For example, one model may have a different distance between the crankshaft and camshaft and thus will need a timing chain kit with different amount of links to cover such distance. Therefore, your Ford vehicle may need a different chain to achieve the perfect engine timing.
Know the difference between standard and racing timing chain kit
If your only concern is to replace a worn timing chain for your vehicle, then there's no reason why standard Ford timing chain kits should not be enough. However, if you have the money and want improve timing chain performance, you can always get racing timing chains. These timing chains are intended for use on racing and have several improvements over the standard ones. They are stronger and more durable, which helps avoid breakage or excessive wear even under stressful driving conditions. The chains have smoother and more accurate surface because of the more advanced manufacturing process involved. And a smooth surface on the chain means less friction during engine operation. In addition, racing timing chains used different designs for the links and bushing, which are less likely to stretch out. What you get is enhanced engine timing performance and chains that last longer.
Look for durable Ford timing chain kit with quality materials and workmanship
These are often overlooked when buying replacement timing chain kit. The best thing that you can do is to test and check the chain and its components using the proper tools and not just by eyeball test. One way to see quality is by checking the construction of other components like the sprocket. Usually, heat-treated products are the better option. These can withstand the high operating temperature inside the engine bay.
Be aware of your vehicle's timing reference marks
Before you buy replacement for your Ford timing chain kit, you need to look up the timing reference marks of your engine. Some engines have multiple timing marks and this could cause a problem if you don't know which one will work for your vehicle or how to line them up. You should also be aware of some special tools that may be needed when installing the replacement chain. In some instances, you will need a special camshaft positioning tool to hold the cams in place while the chain is being replaced.
Other things to consider:
If you are not sure whether it's time to hunt for a replacement timing chain, check your vehicle's manual. Most manufacturers recommend changing the timing chains at around 100,000 to 150,000 miles. However, this could be shorter if you live in an area with severe driving conditions.