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Balance Shaft - Routine Maintenance

 
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Old 09 Aug 2009, 01:02 am
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Question Balance Shaft - Routine Maintenance

Hello,

I have a 2001 PT with 2.4L (No Turbo) with about 166K and has been very well taken care and runs great. I am going to replace with a timing kit (tensioner, pulley, belt and water pump).

Is there a wear replacement schedule for anything to do with the balance shaft assembly? In particular, should the 18-tooth sprocket, chain, tensioner or guide be replaced at any particular time or mileage? Or do these items rarely go bad?

Any feedback, details or personal experiences are very welcome. Thank you in advance.
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Old 09 Aug 2009, 01:16 am
quicksilverdon's Avatar
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Default Re: Balance Shaft - Routine Maintenance

I know of no replacement schedule for the balance shafts. It's a chain, and in the oil pan, so should be good.
In fact, the only posts I've ever seen about the balance shafts is some have either taken the chain off or taken the shafts out to gain some horsepower - supposedly the idle stays pretty smooth, and once you give it gas, no difference....
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Old 09 Aug 2009, 11:15 am
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Default Re: Balance Shaft - Routine Maintenance

Ok, thank you. I just wasn't sure if the chain was ever known to get loose/stretched with high mileage or if the tensioner or guide were susceptible to wear.

I also wanted to make sure that if there was anything common to others that would wear or break I should go ahead and replace (cheap insurance). The only parts I see that are sold at the part stores are the chain ($18), 18-tooth sprocket ($14), tensioner (adjuster) ($7), and chain guide ($11). I really don't want to fuss with it if it's not a common issue and no replacement schedule like timing belt, etc.

There are no problems with it now, but wasn't sure. Thank you for the feedback.
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Old 09 Aug 2009, 12:23 pm
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Default Re: Balance Shaft - Routine Maintenance

The guides WILL wear but I'm confident that the lifespan is higher than any PT Cruiser will likely ever see. I just cut the chain out of my car last week and the plastic guide strips have noticeable grooves in them (small fractions of an inch but they're there) at 122,000 miles. I'm guessing another 120k miles and they MIGHT be half worn out.
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Old 10 Aug 2009, 06:21 am
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Default Re: Balance Shaft - Routine Maintenance

Thank you mopar_man. That will sum it up for me. Like I said, there is no current issue with the system, but was just concerned since the car has so many miles (currently 166,000 miles)... but it sounds like the only wear may be guides, which sounds like the life of the car away, like you said. Thanks again.
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Old 10 Aug 2009, 06:46 pm
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Default Re: Balance Shaft - Routine Maintenance

scusack71, here's a thread I found about removing the balance shaft assembly completely.

http://www.ptcruiserlinks.com/forum/turbo-performance/11502-balance-shaft-assembly-elimination.html


If you're down there and are willing to rebalance the engine, might be worth your time (and engine power) to lighten your load.
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Old 10 Aug 2009, 09:10 pm
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Default Re: Balance Shaft - Routine Maintenance

The engine DOES NOT need to be balanced after removing or disabling them. They have absolutely nothing to do with the internal balance of the engine. They are only there to cancel out vibrations. If you remove the shafts, replace the housing they came out of unless you install a windage tray. Otherwise, the oil pan is just like a big bathtub and the oil piles up in the corners and during braking and acceleration.
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1973 Barracuda
340/auto
Modifications: Too many.
2002 PT Cruiser
N/A 2.4L/5-speed
Modifications: Boogers, Maddog 80% STS, Auto throttle body, Airbox modifications, Eibach Pro springs, Energy Suspension control arm bushings & motor mount inserts, disabled balance shafts.
1989 Caprice Wagon
307/auto
Modifications: Lowered 2" front and rear, flat black paint, emblems and trim removed and filled, pinstriping, big 'n little tires.
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