Is a harmonic balancer a crankshaft pulley?

Asked By: Kenda Vavulin | Last Updated: 13th January, 2020
Category: automotive auto parts
4.7/5 (228 Views . 32 Votes)
A harmonic balancer is a front end accessory drive component that is connected to the crankshaft of an engine. Harmonic balancers do have many names, though, such as damper, crankshaft pulley and crankshaft balancer, among others.

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Thereof, what is a crankshaft harmonic balancer?

The crankshaft harmonic balancer is a device connected to the front of an engine's crankshaft, usually built into the crankshaft pulley. They are usually made of rubber and metal, which easily absorbs any harmonic vibrations that could harm the engine otherwise.

One may also ask, what are the symptoms of a bad harmonic balancer? Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Crankshaft Harmonic Balancer

  • Engine vibration. One of the first symptoms of a potential problem with the harmonic balancer is engine vibration.
  • Misaligned timing marks. Another symptom of a potential problem with the harmonic balancer is misaligned timing marks.
  • Separated harmonic balancer.

Just so, how do I know if my crankshaft pulley is bad?

Bad Crankshaft Pulley Symptoms

  1. 1) Engine Vibrations. The first symptom that will likely come up are engine vibrations.
  2. 2) Alternator Failure. The crankshaft pulley is responsible for powering the alternator.
  3. 3) Power Steering Pump Failure.
  4. 4) Transmission Damage.
  5. 5) Irregular Idle Engine Speed.

Can you fix a harmonic balancer?

It is not due to the seal being faulty. Instead, the groove allows for oil to migrate out. The good news is, the harmonic balancer can easily be repaired with a kit that usually retails for under $10.

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Can you drive with a bad harmonic balancer?

It's not okay to drive with a bad harmonic balancer. The bouncing crankshaft will wear on the main bearings. It can also tear up drive belts and possibly come apart posing a danger to people and property.

How do you test for a bad harmonic balancer?

Start your engine and check the harmonic balancer to see if it wobbles while the engine is running. Take a flashlight and shine it directly onto the balancer to see if it goes in and out while rotating. If it wobbles, the harmonic balancer is bad. Turn off the ignition.

Can a bad harmonic balancer make a knocking noise?

The harmonic balancer should not wobble at all. Before you condemn the motor for having rod or crankshaft knock you should have the crankshaft harmonic balancer checked for a broken one. If it is bad then it can cause a loud knocking noise.

Why does my harmonic balancer wobble?

Failure to do may cause misalignment and galling. Excessive belt tension. An over-tightened belt may cause crankshaft snout runout and harmonic balancer wobble.

Can you start a car without a harmonic balancer?


It will run, and you probably won't notice its missing. Its not a balancer, its a damper, and it keeps the crankshaft from experiencing large displacement torsional vibrations, which cause fatigue of the metal. Just don't run it too long. you must have at least the hub in place so that it will not puke the oil.

What happens if the crankshaft pulley breaks?

This resonance causes too much stress for the crankshaft. If this stress continues, the crankshaft will break and your vehicle will be inoperable. The pulley belt may slip causing your vehicle to backfire or misfire. The vehicle's ignition timing will be off.

How do you remove a crankshaft from an engine?

How to Remove a Crankshaft From Under the Car
  1. Remove the engine's belts.
  2. Remove the pulley which attaches to the harmonic balancer.
  3. Remove the harmonic balancer.
  4. Drain the radiator by removing the radiator's drain plug.
  5. Remove the water pump.
  6. Remove the timing chain cover.
  7. Remove the timing chain.
  8. Remove the oil pan.

Do you have to balance a new crankshaft?

All crankshafts must be balanced to your specific rod and piston combination. When a crankshaft is listed as "internal balance" or "external balance" this is stating how this crank is intended to be balanced. It can be balanced otherwise, but it is much more difficult to do so.

Can you drive with a bad crankshaft pulley?

Indeed, if it's the crank pulley and the harmonic balancer comes off with it and the engine continues to run that can damage the crankshaft. That would be very bad. Other pulleys could get distorted if a fastener is missing and in such condition could damage the drive belt riding on the pulley.

What kind of noise does a bad harmonic balancer make?


Loud Noise from The Engine Bay
A worn-out crankshaft harmonic balancer will also cause a lot of noise in your engine. You will feel this noise once you start to accelerate your car to higher speeds. If this noise is too loud, it is better to not drive the car and call a mechanic.

How do I know if I need a new harmonic balancer?

Signs that your crankshaft harmonic balancer needs to be replaced include:
  1. The engine is loud and you feel vibrations coming from your engine.
  2. The pulley belt may slip causing your vehicle to backfire or misfire.
  3. The vehicle's ignition timing will be off.
  4. The vehicle will not start at all.

How do you remove crankshaft pulley?

You may also use a bolt-removing tool on the bolt's head. You just have to place one end on the bolt-removing tool and slacken the bolt using an impact wrench. With the bolts included in your tool, you may now tighten the bolt remover tool. Keep doing this step until the crankshaft pulley is finally released.

How much does a harmonic balancer cost?

Cost of Harmonic Balancer Replacement
A factory replacement part costs about $261 and a Dayco part costs about $111. The total harmonic balancer replacement cost would be around $251 using OE parts and about $201 using aftermarket parts.

What does a crankshaft pulley do?

The crankshaft pulley (harmonic balancer) is mounted on the end of the crankshaft. Its purpose is to turn the drive belts that operate the engine accessories (alternator, air conditioning compressor, etc.)

What causes the crank pulley to wobble?


Perhaps when they were installed (or re-installed following service), some dirt was trapped under the pulley and/or they were torqued improperly, causing the wobble. With the fan-belt pulley removed you'll be able to examine the harmonic balancer more closely for damage.

What does a crank sensor do when bad?

Intermittent stalling
If the crankshaft position sensor or its wiring have any issues, it can cause the crankshaft signal to be cut off while the engine is running, which can cause the engine to stall. This is usually a symptom of a wiring problem, however a bad crankshaft position sensor can also produce this symptom.

How important is the harmonic balancer?

The harmonic balancer also serves several other important functions. As the name implies, the harmonic balancer helps in balancing the engine. Some have offset weights that provide balance to the crankshaft and other internal engine parts. It also has an even more precise function as a vibration damper.