Will cranking a car without harmonic balancer cause damage to motor?


Asked by Apr 26, 2013 at 05:30 PM about the 1991 Mitsubishi 3000GT 2 Dr SL Hatchback

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Narrowing down my oil leak.  With motor running It is pouring from behind the balancer
and timing belt cover. Possibly oil pump, oil pan gasket, front main seal, cam shaft seals
or valve cover gaskets.  Removed balancer and timing belt cover and still cannot
determine where it's coming from due to oil everywhere.   Will it cause any damage to
start and idle the motor for a short amount of time without balancer on in order to see
exactly where it is coming from?

15 Answers


I think you should run at idle speed with no damage. I'll go see what I can find.

2 people found this helpful.

The only things that will not be running is alternator, a/c and power steering. But was unsure if it might cause any other issues that I was over looking.

4 people found this helpful.

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_does_a_harmonic_balancer_do --- http://www.howstuffworks.com/harmonic-balancer.htm ----

2 people found this helpful.
Best Answer Mark helpful

Thanks tenspeed. Sure glad now I didn't just try it. Would hate to jar my teeth loose or worse. I will put it back on without guards or belts and attempt to see behind it with my mirror.

1 people found this helpful.

there's a puller, they aren't too much money. twist that bad boy (harminic balancer) off of there, screwdriver off the bad seal off and install a new one with a big socket from a big socket set~

1 people found this helpful.

they are like cheep, 'round twenty or less, just a casting and couple 0 bolts~

1 people found this helpful.

Taking it off not the issue. Comes off by hand. Just could not see behind it while engine running to locate leak. And with it off can't tell where the gusser is coming from to much oil spray everywhere

2 people found this helpful.

seals...look a little different than imagined but voila~

2 people found this helpful.

might have trouble finding a socket this big!

tappa tappa tappa with a ball-peen is the only recourse now~


Yes replaced it about 30000 miles ago. And that's why I want to see the oil come out before I replace

2 people found this helpful.

Ok we now have a winner. It was the front main seal. Without guards in place and with use of mirror was able to find it for sure. Due to being a cheap a$$ old man I opted to buy an inexpensive complete gasket and seal set on line back when I was doing the heads. This makes the third one of that set to start leaking since they were replaced. Ok I have learned my lesson. Will only use felpro or other high quality gaskets/seals in the future. Going to go ahead and replace all but the head gaskets and cam seals while I got it apart. When one of these goes I will replace them all also. Reminder to self--all because they say its the same quality does not mean that it is-- Thanks to all for your help and input.

2 people found this helpful.

My fellow mechanic would put a tiny bead of rtv around the outside prior to installation....don't know if it was for lubrication, sealing or "glue-ing" them in~ but never had any trouble with his seal replacements~


just go OEM dandyoun cant beat that

2 people found this helpful.

I learned my lesson.

2 people found this helpful.

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