Rick's Free Auto Repair Advice

Harmonic balancer replacement

Harmonic balancer replacement procedure

Most DIYers can replace a harmonic balancer themselves if they follow the rigth Harmonic balancer replacement procedurehave the right tools. Replacing a harmonic balancer is a three-step process. In many cases, the hardest part is removing the center crankshaft bolt. For that you’ll need the proper ½-in. drive size socket and an air, electric or battery power impact wrench. You can do this job without an air impact wrench, but it’ll be MUCH harder. That’s because the engine will rotate as you apply force to a large breaker bar. Worse yet, if the engine is fitted with a timing belt, you can cause it to turn backward, produce slack and skip a tooth.

The other option is to use a holding tool to prevent crankshaft rotation. One version screws into the existing bolt holes in the harmonic balancer. Another version is a large offset socket that fits into a hex slot in the harmonic balancer. The third option is a strap wrench designed to fit on the pulley portion of the harmonic balancer.

crankshaft holding tools

 

crankshaft holdlng tools

Step 1: Remove crankshaft center bolt from harmonic balancer

Step 2: Use the proper harmonic balancer puller to remove from crankshaft. THIS IS IMPORTANT! If your harmonic balancer doesn’t have factory drilled and threaded holes, do NOT use a jawed gear puller. That type of puller will simply pull the outer pulley ring off the rubber isolation ring. USE THE RIGHT TOOL.

If your engine doesn’t have threaded holes, you’ll need a different type of pulley that grabs the spokes of the harmonic balancer. See these models below.

Step 3:  Install new harmonic balancer replacement unit. Torque to spec

NOTE: If you’re re-using the old harmonic balancer and simply replacing the crankshaft oil seal, check for a wear groove on the harmonic balancer. If you see this type of wear groove, you have two options: replace the harmonic balancer with a new part or install a harmonic balancer sleeve.

Install a harmonic balancer sleeve

Buy a harmonic balancer sleeve repair kit and new harmonic balancer repair sleevecrankshaft oil seal from any auto parts store. You’ll get the repair sleeve, adhesive and an installation tool. Clean the wear groove and shaft with brake cleaner to remove all oil and dirt. Next, apply the adhesive to the shaft of the harmonic balancer. Then use the installation tool to drive the repair sleeve onto the shaft. Remove and replace the crankshaft oil seal. Lubricate the new seal and the outside of the repair sleeve with a light coating of clean engine oil. Re-install the harmonic balancer and torque the crankshaft bolt to spec.

repair sleeve©, 2017 Rick Muscoplat

Posted on by Rick Muscoplat

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