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Removing front crank seal--'01 Corolla

I’ve got to replace a leaking front crankshaft oil seal, and I can use all the help I can get. :slight_smile:

Haynes shows using a steering wheel puller with the two bolts installed, but without the center screw. Insert a socket and extension through the center screw hole. Hold the body of the puller with an adjustable to keep the crank pulley from turning while you loosen the pulley bolt. I’ve got an air impact. Would that hammer the pulley bolt loose without having to hold the pulley? I’ve also got a chain vise-grip, but I’m not sure yet if it would clear the other pulleys.

Assuming I get this far, should I pry out the seal with a flat screwdriver wrapped in tape? Would it help to cut the rubber out of the seal first?

Thanks for any invaluable tips you can offer! :slight_smile:

The impact is key for removing the pulley bolt. It should save you tons of aggravation. I always hold the pulley anyway, but it doesn’t take much since you don’t really need to be able to put the same kind of torque on it.

For removing the seal, the set up can vary so I can’t say anything specific. but when I was once having difficulty with one, Tester (a regular & experienced mechanic on these boards) showed me this tool:

As for the crank pulley bolt…Your impact gun SHOULD be able to loosen it, but this is not reccomended as it stresses the T-belt and T-belt tensioner…people do it all the time, but again not recommended. Many times we in the shop will take note of which direction the engine spins…if it turns CLOCKWISE…you can use a time tested old trick. Install the proper size socket…preferrably 1/2 in drive…and put a breaker bar on the end of the socket…then brace the breaker bar in a position where it cannot possibly move itself out of the way. Then disconnect your coil or disable your fuel injection so the engine will NOT start. Then use your key to jolt the starter and the breaker bar setup and it will easily break that bolt loose…it happens very quickly and is an easy trick to loosening the bolt.

When it is time to tighten the bolt make sure you use red locktite on the bolt threads and then run it in with your gun…I know not recommended but if you dont hammer on the bolt with the gun nothing should be damaged…and I have a gun that WILL damage things and I dont have any issues using this method.

The seal will pop out easily with a screwdriver inserted into the soft spot of the seal and prying out being careful not to scratch the engine or crank nose. That should do it for you…

Hey, HB - I’m just wondering so that I know (b/c I don’t) - in my own head using the starter & using an impact are doing the same thing. So I’m wondering why the impact can be a problem for the timing belt set up but not the starter.