1990 Buick Century 3.3 V6 Harmonic Balancer Replacement

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Old 11-07-06, 04:45 PM
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1990 Buick Century 3.3 V6 Harmonic Balancer Replacement

My wife drives a 1990 Buick Century beater with 148,000 miles we have owned since 1999 & 45,500mi.

On 12/8/01 at 101K, I had to replace the crankshaft's harmonic balancer due to failure at a stop light. (1 yr parts warranty)

On 7/16/05 at 135K, I had to replace it again (the rubber disintegrated and the pulley failed again). (1 yr parts warranty)

Now at 148K, I observed some noise when she started the car, and I noticed the HB was somewhat wobbly. When the AC was turned on, the HB became more wobbly. At faster engine speeds, the wobble is less noticable, but you can tell that it is still wobbling (seems like the centripetal force of faster rotation stabilizes the wobbling to some degree).

Q1: How much wobble is normal?

I picked up a new harmonic balancer ($118 plut tax, manufacturer Dorman #594-044
UPC 0 19495 02034 9). (1 yr parts warranty)

The 2 prior HB replacements were done by me purchasing the HB from Autozone, then having my mechanic remove the old one, and installing the new one.

I attempted to remove the old one this time. What a PITA this became on Sunday. "Waste of time." I like to accomplish things that I set out to do and after 3 trips to area auto stores and about 4 different puller tools, I am still unable to get this HB removed.

The problem is that access to the upper half of the HB is blocked by the body of the car, so no chance for a 3 claw puller. Only possibility is a 2 claw, but I tried several and for one reason or another I just couldn't get it.

Also when I tried to remove this HB, the usual 3 bolt holes you would think you could attach 3 bolts to and use your puller on, only 2 of the holes are threaded! The third hole is smooth! Unbelievable.

Q2: If anyone has any insight on removal of the HB from a 1990 Buick Century 6 cyl 3.3L I would love to know specifically what tool was used.

Q3: Finally, can anyone recommend a quality & honest harmonic balancer manufacturer? The failed HB manufactured by Dorman, well let's just say, is not the manufacture that will be sitting on the end of my crank anymore.

Thanks!
 

Last edited by PepZ555; 11-07-06 at 05:04 PM.
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Old 11-08-06, 09:56 AM
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I managed to get some pictures to help illustrate the problem:
http://thealdens.org/misc/1990buickcentury/harmonicbalancer/default.htm

thanks all
 
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Old 11-10-06, 06:02 AM
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Since I am unable to figure out how to get the HB off, my mechanic will be doing it tomorrow.

Anyone?
 
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Old 11-10-06, 04:26 PM
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if you take off the tire and the plastic covering underneath the car i think you can get to the hb.
 
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Old 11-10-06, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by ALLABOUTDALE
if you take off the tire and the plastic covering underneath the car i think you can get to the hb.
I believe he has a forward space issue. I think his below clearance is ok.
 
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Old 11-10-06, 05:07 PM
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the balancer should be facing the passenger side so if you take all that stuff off you could take the two carriage bolts loose or out you might get the clearance.
 
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Old 11-12-06, 07:56 AM
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Had my mechanic pull off the confirmed bad wobbly harmonic balancer, and put a new one on.

Case closed. Thanks all.
 
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