The flywheel is a mechanical device fitted in cars that utilize angular momentum conservation to store rotational energy. Its primary purpose is to smooth out pulses of energy from the combustion of cylinders.
Considering the intensity of forces that the flywheel experiences, it is secured to the crankshaft using a set of flywheel bolts. These flywheel bolts are designed to withstand extreme conditions and are stronger than most standard bolts.
Specific scenarios call for the removal of flywheel bolts. Examples include when you are replacing the flywheel or rebuilding an engine.
A question many car owners usually have when engaging in such projects is – can you reuse flywheel bolts? This is the focus of today’s discussion, and we will highlight several aspects regarding the reuse of flywheel bolts.
Table of Contents
- Are Flywheel Bolts Reusable?
- How Many Times Can You Reuse Flywheel Bolts?
- Is It a Good Idea to Reuse Flywheel Bolts?
- Do Flywheel Bolts Stretch When You Torque Them?
- Do Expert Mechanics Recommend the Reuse of Flywheel Bolts?
- Can TTY Flywheel Bolts Be Reused?
- What Happens When You Reuse Worn-Out Flywheel Bolts?
- Are Certain Flywheel Bolts Stronger than Others?
- Does Mileage Affect Whether Flywheel Bolts Can Be Reused or Not?
Are Flywheel Bolts Reusable?
Flywheel bolts are reusable, but you should exercise caution before doing so. As you may already know, many brands make flywheel bolts. Examples include ARP and Spectre.
Most flywheel bolts in the market can be reused as much as three times. Therefore, if you were replacing the flywheel or rebuilding an engine, don’t discard the flywheel bolts because you can reuse them once more.
But before you close your browser and rush to reuse the old flywheel bolts, you may want to read the following.
Just because flywheel bolts are reusable doesn’t mean you should do it without proper evaluation. Like other bolts, flywheel bolts can get worn out with time.
Therefore, before reusing a flywheel bolt, you should inspect its current condition. Check the threading and determine whether it’s in good condition.
When flywheel bolts are being torqued, they can stretch. And when that happens, the bolt is no longer reusable. It’s important to remember the amount of power experienced around the flywheel. If you reuse a flywheel bolt and it happens to be loose, the results can be catastrophic.
There are two tips you should follow when reusing flywheel bolts;
1. Torque them correctly – The recommended method of torquing flywheel bolts is by making a quarter turn a time until the flywheel is secured to the crankshaft. Then torque in the following three steps; 25 ft/lbs, 60 ft/lbs, and then 80ft/lbs.
2. Use Loctite – This is a threadlocker that ensures your flywheel bolts are securely fastened to the crankshaft. Using a threadlocker when reusing flywheel bolts is very important because it gives you peace of mind knowing that everything is held together.
Loctite is a special threadlocker that can withstand the vibrations of the flywheel. Always ensure that the flywheel bolts are clean before you apply Loctite. Should you want to remove Loctite in the future, you can always use a blowtorch to loosen up the adhesive.
How Many Times Can You Reuse Flywheel Bolts?
There are car owners who have reused flywheel bolts as much as six times, and they haven’t run into any problems. Nonetheless, not all situations are the same. Flywheel bolts can be reused as many times as possible. However, that usually depends on the condition they are in.
If the flywheel bolts haven’t yielded during torquing, you can always reuse them. However, if you spot any signs of wear, you should refrain from reusing them because that could lead to a much bigger problem. Remember always to use Loctite when reusing flywheel bolts.
Is It a Good Idea to Reuse Flywheel Bolts?
People have different opinions when it comes to reusing flywheel bolts. Some people are really into this idea. Others are extremely against it. We have already established that flywheel bolts are reusable. But is it worth it?
As long as the bolts are in good condition, there is no need to replace them. But the fact remains that there is a slight risk associated with reusing flywheel bolts. If you don’t know how to identify wear in flywheel bolts, reusing them may not be a good idea.
If you have any doubts, never hesitate to replace the flywheel bolts. They are usually cheap. You can get a set of 6 flywheel bolts for as less as $6.
Unless you want flywheel bolts from a brand such as ARP, then you will have to pay around $40. Whatever the case, you can’t compare risking using damaged flywheel bolts to buying new ones.
If you suspect your flywheel bolts are in bad condition, you can replace them. But after a thorough examination, and they still look good, you can reuse the ones you already have.
Do Flywheel Bolts Stretch When You Torque Them?
One of the reasons it may not be possible to reuse flywheel bolts is if they are stretched. If you are wondering how that happens. It’s probably because it has been torqued incorrectly.
There is a reason car manufacturers provide you with guidelines on how to torque flywheel bolts. If you over-torque them, that will lead to stretching. Once flywheel bolts stretch, there is no option but to replace them.
Do Expert Mechanics Recommend the Reuse of Flywheel Bolts?
Absolutely. It’s not just regular car owners who reuse flywheel bolts. This is something that almost everyone in the auto industry does. You will find professional mechanics reusing flywheel bolts, and the same applies to mechanics working in dealerships.
Therefore, the reuse of flywheel bolts isn’t just a DIY hack. It’s something that is practiced by a wide range of people. However, the number one rule is to check the condition before you can replace it.
Can TTY Flywheel Bolts Be Reused?
Before reusing these bolts, you must evaluate the type you are dealing with. Some flywheel bolts work on the mechanism of torque to yield. These are single-use bolts that, once you install them, you should forget about them.
What Happens When You Reuse Worn-Out Flywheel Bolts?
This is something that you shouldn’t do in the first place. But let’s assume that you reuse flywheel bolts, and the thread is worn out, or the bolts are broken. They will eat through the holes in the flywheel.
What happens is that loose bolts are unable to hold the flywheel steadily when it’s exposed to vibrations. As a result, the movement in the holes increases, leading to excessive damage to the flywheel.
Should the holes on your flywheel be completely eaten away by loose bolts, you will have no option but to replace the flywheel altogether, which will be a waste of time and money.
Because of this, I would like to emphasize the importance of checking the condition of flywheels before reusing them.
Are Certain Flywheel Bolts Stronger than Others?
As a car owner, it’s advisable always to be aware of marketing gimmicks. Every brand that makes flywheel bolts always praises its products for being durable and high quality. Though true, you need not take such claims seriously.
Some of the flywheel bolts known to be stronger than others are those made by ARP. For such flywheel bolts, you can reuse them as many times as possible. However, if you are dealing with other brands that are not well known, don’t over-reuse them.
Does Mileage Affect Whether Flywheel Bolts Can Be Reused or Not?
The longer the mileage, the more reasons you should not reuse flywheel bolts. However, these bolts tend to be pretty sturdy and can last for a hundred thousand miles if torqued correctly. It’s always a good idea to have a rough understanding of the mileage of your flywheel bolts before reusing them.