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2010 Camry XLE
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Discussion Starter #1
I am trying to change the timing belt on our 2003 Highlander V6 and almost immediately got stuck while trying to take the crank bolt off. I bought a pulley holding tool and second 18" breaker bar to use with it, but it won't budge. I was even laying on the ground with my feet on one bar and pulling on the other (like doing a deadlift at the gym). I am hesitant to use the method where I wedge the breaker bar and bump the engine, but think I may have to. So with that, I have two questions:

1) What is the easiest way to ensure the engine doesn't start when I bump the starter?

2) Would putting anti-seize compound on the thread and flange when reinstalling be advisable or even work?

Thanks for all the advice you have given me in the past and hopefully for this one as well!
 

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I don't remember mine being that tight, I just jammed a screwdriver in the teeth on the ring gear and used a breaker bar to loosen that bolt. I used never seize on the bolt and crankshaft surface the next two timing belt changes without any issues, and the pulley comes off almost by hand the next time around. you could always try a pipe on the end of your breaker bar, or as vangm25 says, an impact should make quick work of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
:D I was trying to avoid that expense as from what I have seen on YouTube, I would probably need a 3/4" electric. No compressor at home. I think the last shop that took off the nut 10 years ago over torqued it.

Thanks Mgeorge for your experience using never seize. Very helpful!
 

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last time I needed to bump the engine to remove the crank bolt was on an '84 Supra. I was advised to cover the breaker bar with a bunch of towels before bumping the starter so as to protect the radiator if the breaker bar took a trip when the bolt released....that was good advice. The yoke on the breaker bar was sprung by the technique, but it did break the bolt loose.

One way to prevent the engine from starting when you bump the starter is to pull the fuse for the fuel pump...
 

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I’ve got to start with this- make sure you are trying to turn in the right direction. Being in an awkward position can be disorienting.
Next, a lot can go wrong with the bump method. Not recommended.
If you are not using a 3/4 drive breaker and 6 point socket, it’s too small. You may need about a 30 inch handle. Wear thick gloves and eye & face protection in case the yoke breaks.
Use a penetrating oil. Seafoam deep creep is one of the best.

I know some people like to use an impact gun, but that is pounding against the thrust bushing. I would avoid it if possible.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I’ve got to start with this- make sure you are trying to turn in the right direction. Being in an awkward position can be disorienting.
Next, a lot can go wrong with the bump method. Not recommended.
If you are not using a 3/4 drive breaker and 6 point socket, it’s too small. You may need about a 30 inch handle. Wear thick gloves and eye & face protection in case the yoke breaks.
Use a penetrating oil. Seafoam deep creep is one of the best.

I know some people like to use an impact gun, but that is pounding against the thrust bushing. I would avoid it if possible.
C R, thanks for the advice. I really didn't want to try the bump method since I can see so many things that could go wrong as well. Didn't even think of a 3/4 breaker bar. Will have to get the car another foot off the ground though. I read or heard somewhere that an impact is not recommended by Toyota and now I know why. Thanks again!
 

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2003 Highlander
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Oh, you guys are so chicken.....just find a socket that fits tight. A 15 inch long breaker bar will lay flat on the subframe with the handle end pointed towards the front of the car. Chirp the starter. Chirp it again. On-off, quick wrist. Have dogs and children stand clear. Yee Haw!
 

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08 Toyota Camry 2AZ-FE R9K Tuned
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Generally speaking, the more you struggle with it the more likely for something to break compared to other methods. Think, think, think, think vs the answer is obvious.

A while back my cousin had to get new wheel studs. We did not at all have any power tools and we had to replace like all of them. It took us probably two hours just to do barely get one wheel stud installed. Then his mom offered to pay and we got an electric impact gun and got the job done is less than one hour.

When you keep on struggling even though the answer is obvious is when things can go horribly wrong. I would also not use the "starter" method since to me it is the same as an impact gun. "A sudden force of movement" to break the bolt lose except you are not using the engine to do it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks everybody for your input! Please keep it coming. Luckily, we have our Camry back from our daughter so I can take all the time I want on the Highlander.

Has anyone ever snapped the head off the crank pulley bolt?
 

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Thanks everybody for your input! Please keep it coming. Luckily, we have our Camry back from our daughter so I can take all the time I want on the Highlander.

Has anyone ever snapped the head off the crank pulley bolt?
Ways to prevent that would be PB Blaster, penetrating oil, HEAT HEAT HEAT HEAT and a impact gun. If it is that stuck, either it is just that rusted in or SOMEONE had to use red loctite....
 

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I too used a 1/2" electric impact gun to remove it. It did it pretty effortlessly. One just like this:

 

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イリジウム
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Is that the 3.0L 1MZ engine? Check out a crank pulley holder tool from Schley #64300 (there are different ones for different engines).

I had to use a 5-6’ cheater pipe. Put on safe goggles, I use a 1/2”-drive breaker bar w/ extension and understand the risks of doing that and take responsibility, work carefully.

The bolt tends to get tighter with the length of time it’s on there. Not comfortable? take it to a shop, have them loosen it, lightly tighten it back for the slow drive home as some members did.

On reinstall use Permatex medium blue threadlocker. No anti seize as that reduces friction and can cause the bolt to snap at the specified torque. And I don’t know about torque recalculations.

Just wire brush the bolt threads clean. If you have a smaller brush clean the threads in the crank too (I didn’t).
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Is that the 3.0L 1MZ engine? Check out a crank pulley holder tool from Schley #64300 (there are different ones for different engines).

I had to use a 5-6’ cheater pipe. Put on safe goggles, I use a 1/2”-drive breaker bar w/ extension and understand the risks of doing that and take responsibility, work carefully.

The bolt tends to get tighter with the length of time it’s on there. Not comfortable? take it to a shop, have them loosen it, lightly tighten it back for the slow drive home as some members did.

On reinstall use Permatex medium blue threadlocker. No anti seize as that reduces friction and can cause the bolt to snap at the specified torque. And I don’t know about torque recalculations.

Just wire brush the bolt threads clean. If you have a smaller brush clean the threads in the crank too (I didn’t).
JohnGD, Yes, it's a 3.0L 1MZ. I have a pulley holder that looks exactly like the one you listed, a Sunluway, which seems to hold very securely, but wish I had seen the Schley first. It is a couple dollars cheaper and made in the US vs. China.

Thanks for the tips. I will wire brush the threads, male and female. I probably will take it to a shop to have them break it loose like you suggested. If it breaks, at least it is at a shop that should be able to fix it!
 

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Threadlocker also works as a lubricant and will affect the torque.
I always use a new bolt.
 

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2003 Highlander
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Boys....the direction of the engine causes the bolt to tighten. A tiny-tiny amount of blue threadlock is fine, then just torque it up solid.
If you don't believe, go back after driving a few miles the bolt will be tighter than you left it. True.
Best wishes, Haya....
 

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イリジウム
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My use of blue threadlocker is more for corrosion prevention than to lock the crank bolt.

The factory uses a higher strength threadlocker, so OP might want to try a heat gun but be aware the rubber layer in the crank pulley. The crank seal I’d replace after that.
 

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Bump method has always worked for me, except once when working on a seized engine for obvious reasons... everyone I worked with at the dealership did it that way too. Really it's a lot safer than smashing your elbow in to the ground when hanging off a breaker bar. Just make sure it's only a bump, like as quick of a hit as you can give it. I've never worried about pulling a fuse, but if you rely on that to keep the engine from starting make sure it's the EFI fuse (which may also be the fuel pump fuse, but if they are separate remember there is still fuel in the rail)
 

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6 point socket, air impact gun w/175psi compressor (need more than 100psi compressor....even 125psi??? maybe)
The pulley bolt is not going to break.
Using the starter in a pinch, but leave a bit of space so the crank can get turning before the "sudden takeup" and hold the breaker bar on with a 2x4 so it doesn't fly off.
 
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