In 2013, Volkswagen (VW) reduced the interval (both kilometres and time) recommended to replace the timing belt on VW vehicles.
On certain engines with overhead camshafts, the timing belt has a limited lifespan. The timing belt is an essential component of the engine. It turns the camshaft(s) at exactly ½ the speed of the crankshaft whilst maintaining precise engine alignment and it’s responsible for adjusting the engine’s valve operation. The timing belt effects the fuel consumption and emissions.
During timing belt replacement, the water pump is also changed therefore the cost of labour involved on replacing these parts are incurred only once.
If you have purchased a VW that does not have a recorded or known history of the timing belt being replaced, we strongly advise that you undertake this important maintenance item. Failure of the timing belt (if it breaks) can cause catastrophic engine damage and lead to a very costly repair.
The above information is an overview only and intended for awareness purposes.
Source: Volkswagen Australia website