How do I check if the timing belt has slipped on 1999 Chevy Venture 3400 sfi?


Asked by Jan 09, 2015 at 12:24 PM about the 1999 Chevrolet Venture 4 Dr LS Passenger Van

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 1999 Chevy Venture with the 3400 sfi.  Before work, I started the van to let it warm up, it started fine.  When I came back out to leave the van had stalled.  Now it won't run.  It cranks and attempts to run but idles very rough, severe misfiring, then dies.  It has spark and can hear the fuel pump engage when the key is turned to the on position.  I pulled 2 of the plugs and they smelled of fuel but weren't wet.  I don't believe it's flooded.  I have also tried to start it using the flooded engine procedure.  I'm afraid the timing belt has slipped.  How can I check this without tearing the engine apart? One last thing, it is extremely cold here in Indiana (thank you Polar Vortex II).  In case I'm fortunate enough that there is just water in the fuel, I just poured in a bottle of Heet.  Any thoughts on what it could be would be appreciated.

6 Answers

Your Chevy Venture has a timing chain .. ..and it is unlikely it has jumped a tooth unless the tensioner has failed. And sorry, but the only way to know is look. Click image

6 of 6 people found this helpful.

Thanks Ford. I had just found that out right before I read your response. I've since tried spraying ether directly into the throttle body and the engine still won't run. It still seems like a timing problem. Any suggestions on what I can check to verify this? Is the timing controlled by computer?

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

The ignition timing is, but the chain is the cam--valve timing.Do and OBDII scan. Many parts houses will do it free for you, and eliminate a lot of guesswork

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Opps, just noticed it won't run to get to parts house..but you can buy one, maybe rent a scanner


That's another thing. The check engine light isn't even on. I have a few things to check before I start removing parts to check the chain and tensioner; the other 2 ignition coils, the ICM and crankshaft sensor, at least. Any other suggestions? Also, I'll borrow/rent a scanner if I can pull a code without the CEL on.

did you ever figure out what the problem was? I have a 99 Montana that's doing the same exact thing. I tore off the entire front end of the engine to find the timing chain and all parts exactly as they should be. ?????

Your Answer


Looking for a Used Venture in your area?

CarGurus has 287 nationwide Venture listings and the tools to find you a great deal.


Chevrolet Venture Experts

  • #1
    Tom Demyan
  • #2
    John Carson
  • #3
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Honda Odyssey
308 Great Deals out of 33,307 listings starting at $1,900
Used Chrysler Town & Country
145 Great Deals out of 12,618 listings starting at $1,999
Used Dodge Grand Caravan
219 Great Deals out of 31,299 listings starting at $1,950
Used Toyota Sienna
282 Great Deals out of 19,604 listings starting at $1,695
Used Dodge Caravan
417 listings
Used Pontiac Montana
159 listings starting at $1,800
Used Chevrolet Astro
201 listings starting at $1,595
Used Toyota Avalon
183 Great Deals out of 10,000 listings starting at $1,995
Used Chevrolet Express
48 Great Deals out of 4,725 listings starting at $3,900
Used Toyota Camry
890 Great Deals out of 73,115 listings starting at $1,400
Used Chevrolet Impala
379 Great Deals out of 27,771 listings starting at $1,499
Used Nissan Quest
38 Great Deals out of 2,271 listings starting at $1,800

Content submitted by Users is not endorsed by CarGurus, does not express the opinions of CarGurus, and should not be considered reviewed, screened, or approved by CarGurus. Please refer to CarGurus Terms of Use.