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Harmonic Balancers Keep your Engine Stable from Vibrations

A vehicle's harmonic balancer prevents vibration from overwhelming and excessively stressing important car parts. As cylinders fire in a vehicle's engine, they move up and down. This creates energy that is transferred to the crankshaft. The crankshaft translates the engine's energy into rotational movement. These vibrations are very powerful and can become too forceful for the crankshaft. When the engine achieves high speeds, the torque from the cylinders syncs with the vibration of the crankshaft and this results in resonance. This resonance stresses the crankshaft and can result in crankshaft failure. The harmonic balancer prevents this excessive vibration from wearing on the crankshaft.

The harmonic balancer is made up of two components. It has both a mass and an element that will dissipate energy. The mass resists acceleration of the vibration. The energy-dissipating element absorbs vibration. Over time, the harmonic balancer can wear. If the harmonic balancer pulley wears out or fails, the drive belt is another part that will likely be affected. Without a functioning harmonic balancer, the drive belt will likely be thrown. This thrown belt may be broken and necessitate replacement. If the harmonic balancer is not replaced before installing a new belt, the new belt may also be thrown and damaged. The pulley wheel will help to slow the progression of vibration in the engine. The belt system will also help to absorb some of the vibration.

A failing harmonic balancer can be diagnosed at home. A signal that the harmonic balancer is experiencing wear is rough engine vibrations, a cracked crankshaft, or a serpentine belt that falls off of its track. The harmonic balancer prevents these other major automobile problems from happening. These related auto problems can be a signal that your harmonic balancer has failed.

Installing a new harmonic balancer is relatively easy. It often involves removing major car parts like the bumper or radiator. Always consult your manufacturer's suggested guidelines for installing any car part. Basic steps for replacing a harmonic balancer begin with removing the belt from the crankshaft pulley. Then remove the harmonic balancer mounting bolt. A harmonic balancer puller is necessary to remove your current harmonic balancer. Use the puller tool to take the balancer off of the crankshaft. Install the new harmonic balancer then repeat these steps in reverse order to replace your vehicle's parts. Find a harmonic balancer for your vehicle and shop a great variety of high quality auto parts like automotive pulleys, timing chains, engine pulleys and more at Sears.