How to Easily Remove a Crankshaft Pulley from Your Subaru: Expert Tips and Tricks!

If you’re a car enthusiast or mechanic who owns or works on a Subaru vehicle, you might be familiar with the term "crankshaft pulley". This car part plays a vital role in the engine’s operation, as it transfers power from the engine to other components that rely on it. However, there may be times when you need to remove it, whether it’s for maintenance or repair purposes. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about removing a crankshaft pulley from your Subaru.

What is a Crankshaft Pulley and Why Would You Need to Remove It?

The crankshaft pulley, or harmonic balancer, is a device that’s connected to the crankshaft of the engine. Its primary function is to absorb vibrations that occur in the engine’s operation, ensuring that none of the components are damaged from the force. It’s also responsible for powering the various accessories in the car that rely on the engine, such as the alternator, power steering pump, air conditioning compressor, and water pump.

There are various reasons why you might need to remove the crankshaft pulley from your Subaru. These can include:

  • Replacing it with a new or improved version
  • Inspecting it for signs of wear and tear
  • Making engine repairs that require its removal
  • Performing general engine maintenance to keep it running smoothly
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Whatever the reason, it’s important to have the right tools and knowledge to remove the crankshaft pulley safely and effectively.

Required Tools and Safety Tips

Before you begin, you’ll need to have the correct tools to remove the crankshaft pulley from your Subaru. These include:

  • Socket set and breaker bar
  • Harmonic balancer puller tool
  • Timing cover bolt kit
  • Rubber mallet
  • Jack stands and hydraulic jack
  • Safety glasses and gloves

It’s also important to take safety precautions before starting any work on your engine. You should wear safety glasses and gloves to protect your eyes and hands from any debris or sparks that may occur. In addition, you should use jack stands and a hydraulic jack to support your vehicle while you’re working underneath it. Never rely solely on a car jack or attempt to work underneath a car that isn’t properly supported.

Step-by-Step Instructions on How to Remove the Crankshaft Pulley

Now that you have the right tools and safety gear, it’s time to remove the crankshaft pulley from your Subaru. Follow these step-by-step instructions to ensure a successful removal:

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable from your car battery before you begin work on your engine.
  2. Remove the outer drive belts that are connected to the crankshaft pulley. You may need to use a breaker bar or socket wrench to loosen them.
  3. Remove the bolts that hold the lower timing belt cover in place using the timing cover bolt kit.
  4. Remove the four bolts that are holding the crankshaft pulley in place. These are typically located at the front of the engine.
  5. Use the harmonic balancer puller tool to remove the crankshaft pulley from the engine. This will require some force, so be prepared to use a rubber mallet to help dislodge it if it’s stuck.
  6. Inspect the crankshaft pulley for any signs of wear and tear or damage. Replace it if necessary.
  7. Reinstall the crankshaft pulley and tighten the bolts to the manufacturer’s specifications.
  8. Reinstall the lower timing belt cover and tighten the bolts using the timing cover bolt kit.
  9. Reinstall the outer drive belts that were disconnected earlier.
  10. Reconnect the negative battery cable to your car battery.
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Congratulations, you’ve successfully removed and inspected your Subaru’s crankshaft pulley. If you encounter any issues during removal, don’t hesitate to take your car to a mechanic for assistance.

Tips and Tricks for Removing a Stubborn Crankshaft Pulley

Removing a crankshaft pulley from your Subaru can sometimes be easier said than done. If your pulley is particularly stubborn, here are a few tips and tricks that may help:

  • Use a lubricant such as WD-40 or PB Blaster to help loosen the pulley’s grip on the crankshaft.
  • Apply heat to the pulley using a heat gun or propane torch. This can help expand the metal and make it easier to remove.
  • Tap the end of the harmonic balancer puller tool with a rubber mallet to apply more force and break the seal between the pulley and the crankshaft.

Using these techniques in combination with the step-by-step instructions above can help you successfully remove even the most stubborn crankshaft pulley from your Subaru.


Q: How do I know if my crankshaft pulley needs to be replaced?
A: Signs of a damaged or worn crankshaft pulley can include unusual noises or vibrations from the engine, difficulty starting the car, or a loss of power in the accessory components that rely on the pulley. If you notice any of these issues, it’s best to have a mechanic inspect your pulley to determine if it needs to be replaced.

Q: Can I remove the crankshaft pulley without a harmonic balancer puller tool?
A: No, a harmonic balancer puller tool is required to safely and effectively remove the crankshaft pulley from your Subaru. Attempting to remove it without the proper tool can cause damage to your engine and put you at risk of injury.

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We hope this step-by-step guide has been helpful in explaining how to remove a crankshaft pulley from your Subaru. With the right tools and safety measures in place, you can successfully remove and inspect this important engine component for maintenance or repair purposes. Remember to take your time, follow the instructions carefully, and seek professional assistance if needed. Happy wrenching!

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Joseph Weaver

With a background in engineering and a passion for cars, Joseph brings a unique perspective to our blog. He's particularly interested in the technology and innovation behind Subaru's advanced safety features, and his articles on this topic are always insightful and informative. When he's not writing, he enjoys playing video games and spending time with his family.

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