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Crankshaft Pulley Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Crankshaft Pulley Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

1.5 hours

Tab:

$150

Talent:

****

Tools:

Phillips head screwdriver, E10 external Torx, floor jack, jack stands, wheel chocks, safety glasses, torque wrench

Applicable Models:

MINI Cooper (2007-11)
MINI Cooper S (2007-11)

Parts Required:

Crankshaft pulley, pulley bolts

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine

Performance Gain:

Proper belt drive function

Complementary Modification:

Install lightweight pulley

The harmonic balancer is one of those items on the MINI that seems to be a when it fails, not if it fails item. When the balancer fails, it separates into two pieces, causing all of the accessory items driven by the serpentine belt to stop spinning. The harmonic balancer on the MINI Cooper has been updated twice since the introduction of the R56 model so improve on the design. If your pulley has never been replaced, it's not bad idea to install a new one to prevent a failure.

People tend to swap out the harmonic balancer and replace it with either a lighter or different sized pulley. While this does work to free up power from the engine, it often comes at the expense of no dampening being engineered into the design. With the inherent imbalance of an inline four cylinder engine, this will eventually lead to wear on other parts of the engine. If you want to use a lighter, different sized pulley, be sure to use one that has dampening built into the design.

In this article I will describe how to replace the crankshaft pulley (harmonic balancer) on MINI R56 models.

Keep in mind that when your car was serviced before, parts may have been replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have, so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches.

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If you're working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Do not work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Vehicle models change and evolve, as they grow older, so the vehicle shown in our illustrations may vary slightly from yours. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Do you have questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

Lift and support your vehicle. See our tech article on jacking your MINI.

Remove the right front wheel well liner. See our tech article on wheel well liner replacing.

The crankshaft pulley is mounted to the right side of the engine and bolts to the timing chain / pulley hub flange using three M8x16mm E10 Torx bolts (red arrow).
Figure 1

The crankshaft pulley is mounted to the right side of the engine and bolts to the timing chain / pulley hub flange using three M8x16mm E10 Torx bolts (red arrow). When replacing, the hub flange remains installed and tightened to the engine, removing the hub flange center bolt will result in mistiming the engine. The pulley is insulated using rubber (green arrow). This is the trouble area. Cracks develop as shown in the images, eventually resulting in the pulley becoming detached.

Once the wheel well liner is removed, remove the drive belt from the engine.
Figure 2

Once the wheel well liner is removed, remove the drive belt from the engine. See our tech article on the drive belt replacing. Then, remove the A/C line support (green arrow). Start by removing the 10mm fastener (red arrow).

Next, unclip the line (red arrow) and remove the support from the engine.
Figure 3

Next, unclip the line (red arrow) and remove the support from the engine.

Remove the three E10 external Torx fasteners (green arrows).
Figure 4

Remove the three E10 external Torx fasteners (green arrows). Do not loosen the large center bolt.

Then, remove the pulley from the pulley hub.
Figure 5

Then, remove the pulley from the pulley hub. If stuck, use a soft-faced hammer and lightly tap the perimeter of the pulley to free it.

Remove the pulley from the hub.
Figure 6

Remove the pulley from the hub. Clean the hub using emery cloth. Then reverse the steps to install the new pulley. If the E10 fastener heads are rusty, replace them. Otherwise they may be hard to get out in the future.

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