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Duramax, Installations

Pinning the Crankshaft in your Duramax

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When was the last time you thought about the dowel pin that holds the harmonic balancer in position on your Duramax? Let’s refresh your memory, and while we’re at it dive into why adding an additional pin to your crankshaft can be beneficial. 

The stock dowel pin can often be damaged or shear off. This can cause the harmonic balancer to spin on the crankshaft. This could result in excessive engine vibration, throw off the balance of the rotating assembly, and could even result in serious engine damage.  

Unfortunately, there are no warning signs that you’ll notice without visually inspecting the dowel pin. Don’t take the risk of your truck being out of commission, make sure it’s secure and correct. Keep your harmonic balancer secure and avoid issues with the XDP Duramax Crankshaft Pin kit. 

The Kit includes the necessary components to install an additional crankshaft pin, including a jig, a drill bit, and a dowel pin. You can drill and pin your crankshaft, making sure the harmonic balancer won’t move or spin on the crankshaft, throwing off the balance of your rotating assembly. These pin kits can be helpful in both stock and performance applications. 

If you’re preparing to add an additional pin in your Duramax’s Crankshaft, we have some words of wisdom from our technician Mike, “It’s a fairly straightforward job. I would recommend making sure you’re working with the correct tools to properly hold the engine while having to remove and torque the crank bolt. I can’t say how many times I have come across crank bolts not being properly torqued that cause these failures. It can’t be stressed enough that torquing that bolt down is a crucial part of this install.”  

“This job is accessible while replacing a water pump, radiator, and anything that would have the fan and shroud removed from the front of the engine. Belts, tensioners, pulleys, etc…” 


Make sure you have all the tools you need before getting started. When pinning your crankshaft with the XDP Duramax Crankshaft Pin Kit, you’ll need:  

  • Tape measure 
  • 12-point 36mm ½“drive shallow socket  
  • 22mm Socket  
  • Torque Wrench Capable of 300 Ft. Lbs.  
  • 90 Degree Drill  
  • Cutting/Drilling Lubricant 
  • Drill Guide & Bit (included in the kit 

Now that we’ve got our tools together let’s get started…  

Measure 1 3/4” on the supplied drill bit and tape this mark. This is the depth to which the crankshaft will be drilled.  

Remove factory crankshaft bolt, using a 12point 36mm socket.  

Place drilling guide onto the crankshaft. Clock the fixture 180 degrees from the existing factory key.  

Install the supplied bolt hand-tight with a ratchet or wrench. Do not overtighten!  

In a 90-degree drill, carefully drill the 1 3/4” hole. Go slow! Remember to use plenty of cutting/drilling lubricant. 

Inspect the hole and ensure that it’s clear of any debris and shavings from the drilling procedure.  

Remove the holding fixture and bolt from the damper.  

Tap or press the supplied dowel pin into the hole.


Once the pin is seated, re-install the factory bolt and torque to 278 ft-lbs. 

Now that you’ve got your new dowel pin installed, you can be confident in taking your Duramax to the max no matter what the situation. So have peace of mind knowing the harmonic balancer and crankshaft are safe and reliable in your Duramax. Visit today to shop for the XDP Duramax Crankshaft Pin Kit!