Crank pulley key broke = engine replacement ?

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by Eddy Celis, Sep 15, 2004.

  1. Eddy Celis

    Eddy Celis Guest

    My teenage son's 1993 Honda Del Sol SI made an horrible sound one
    night and when he checked under the hood, the belt going to the
    powersteering pump had come off and had wrapped itself around the
    other belts and the pulley block. He removed the belt by cutting it
    off, thinking he would be able to make it home without powersteering.
    And the engine ran fine for a couple of miles. Then another noise came
    from under the hood and the car died a minute later, with an empty
    battery. We towed it home and later to a local Honda dealer to have it
    The diagnose was a broken key on the crankshaft pulley, damaged pulley
    block and crankshaft. The service manager said the best way to go
    would be to replace the engine by a newer one (the current one has
    125K miles on it) for an estimate of 3600, plus tax.

    A couple of questions for the technical people on this newsgroup;

    1) We had this car serviced by that dealer about three months ago and
    had the waterpump, timing belt and all the other belts replaced. Could
    this service, if done wrong, have caused the current problem ? The way
    I looked at this problem, the powersteering belt jumped off the
    pulley, wrapped itself around the pulley, blocked it and because the
    crank still wanted to spin, the key broke.
    2) When I asked the service manager if this previous service could
    have had anything to do with it, he claimed that the only way this can
    happen is that my son had "gotten on it" and "blew" the engine. So
    no... and the belt coming off was the last thing that happened he
    claimed and had nothing to do with the problem. From my pov, he uses
    the fact that a 17 year old drove the car as a way out. I don't there
    is any way you could ever break the pulley key by "getting on it", or
    is there ?
    3) Is it better to replace the engine then trying to get this fixed ?

    $3600 for a used (same) engine seems like a total rip-off. I found
    used engines on the net for $800 and a local performance shop will put
    it in for $300.
    I was looking at buying an S2000 at that dealership next year (for
    myself), but can I still trust this service department ?

    Eddy Celis, Sep 15, 2004
  2. Eddy Celis

    jim beam Guest

    very likely. but /your/ problem is proving it. even if your son is not
    a racer, the dealer will have a real good go at shouting you down on
    this one.
    sounds plausible, but for a key to break??? have you any idea of the
    shear force necessary to break one of those things? if the diagnosis is
    accurate, you'll have to replace the crank & pulley block, with all the
    labor that involves. i've seen that kind of thing done with the motor
    still in the car, but it's a real pita, especially for a transverse
    motor like a honda, so i'd say replacement is the quickest solution,
    unless you're ambitious & know what you're doing.
    probably. check prices with a reputable independent.
    unless that's a remarkably hopped up motor, yes it is.
    for the si?

    personally, i'd go to a different dealer & tell them /you/ were driving
    and see if they have a different story. interesting to compare notes.
    jim beam, Sep 15, 2004

  3. Used engines direct from Japan are available for generally less than $1K
    and usually have under 5K on them not to mention they come with a
    warranty. There are a couple of companies that provide these engines
    from low mileage cars in Japan.

    Don't bother with the dealer unless you can make them replace it for
    free and it looks like they may be at fault...
    Grumpy au Contraire, Sep 15, 2004
  4. OH yeah.
    Elmo P. Shagnasty, Sep 15, 2004
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