modifications > Balance Shaft Delete

Why did you delete the balance shafts out of your RS?

The in-line 4 cylinder engine is inherently unbalanced from a secondary harmonics level due to its design. To counteract that inbalance manufacturers typically install gear-driven balance shafts below the block (inside the oil pan). In the case of the Focus RS the balance shaft assembly consists of 2 shafts in a housing bolted to the bottom of the block, and driven off the crankshaft via a gear.

Although it hasn't been proven, there have been several Focus RS engine failures where connecting rods have busted through the engine case or oil pan. No firm evidence has been shown that the balance shafts contributed to the failure, but some think that they might. The assembly is heavy (~12 lb), and it adds parasitic drag to the crankshaft. Deleting the balance shaft assembly will free up some horsepower and lighten the front end of my RS (which needs all the help it can get at 60% front weight distribution).

I chose the Massive Speed System balance shaft delete kit. It includes a bolt and plug assembly to shut off the oil supply that fed the OE balance shaft assembly. Also included in the kit is a replacement oil pan baffle assembly that replaces the original. It keeps a pocket of oil around the RS oil pickup to prevent oil starvation due to high g cornering (like on Hoosier slicks). After the balance shaft assembly is deleted, the RS will require additional oil capacity. Instead of the original 5.7 quarts of oil, you will need to run 6.5 quarts total. Check your dipstick as your mileage may vary.

Date Completed:



- Massive Speed System Balance Shaft Delete Kit (
- Paper from MSS box to tape off rotating assembly from die grinder dust
- Motorcraft TA-30 RTV sealant + caulk gun
- Brake cleaner to clean mating surfaces
- Tons and tons of blue shop towels
- 5W-50 Motorcraft Oil + Wix filter (I used 6.5 quarts)
- Red Permatex / Loctite for bolts
- Masking + duct tape
- Nitrile gloves
- Sweet Tea (optional)


- 1/4" + 3/8" drive ratchets, various sockets (7mm, 8mm, 8mm Allen, 10mm, 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 15mm, 18mm, 19mm, T30)
- 1/2" breaker bar and 1/2" to 3/8" socket adapter
- 11mm combination wrench for ETS IC coupling clamp nuts
- 1/4" Torque wrench
- 3/8" Torque wrench
- 1/2" Torque wrench
- Die grinder with soft pads to remove factory RTV sealant from oil pan and engine block mating surfaces
- Pry bar + large flathead screwdriver for removing the oil pan (in the 2 correct locations!)
- Jack + Jack Stands
- 9,000 lb 4-post lift (optional, but highly recommended!)
*A friend for moral support is always optional. If friend isn't available Pandora will suffice.


1. Install takes 1 day + curing for the TA-30 sealant. I took my time because of taking pictures for this website.
2. Undertray removal is required. Duh.
3. Use a jack + jack stands or use a lift.
4. (3) wiring plugs need to be disconnected/reconnected for this swap (A/C compressor, air box sensor, harness on starter bracket).
5. Follow along in the pictures for removal/replacement process.
6. I did not use an A/C Compressor belt removal tool. I unbolted the compressor and wiggled the belt off. Reverse process to reinstall.
7. All of the transmission to engine block bolts need to be loosened so the oil pan isn't in a bind. (5) bottom + (3) top bolts.
8. I used a die grinder + soft gray pads to remove the factory RTV from the oil pan and engine mating surface. No metal scrapers on aluminum!
9. Torque specs = 81 lb-ft for (2 inner bolts) + 66 lb-ft for (2 outer nuts) on the front lower control arm brace, 30 lb-ft for (2) starter bolts, 35 lb-ft for (8) transmission bolts,
     18 lb-ft for (3) A/C compressor bolts, 18 lb-ft then 31 lb-ft (1) BalanceShaftDelete bolt, 177 lb-in for (13) vertical oil pan bolts, 89 lb-in for (4) pass side oil pan bolts + (2) oil pickup tube bolts.
10. The only bolts that I used red Loctite on were the BSD plug assembly bolt and the MSS oil pan baffle bolts.
11. I ended up adding a total of 6.5 quarts of oil after the BS delete. Your engine may be different.
12. Added oil and ran engine for 60 seconds. Checked for leaks. Wet spot from residue (picture 57). Wiped. Drove 75 miles. No issues.
13. Leftover parts = OE balance shaft assembly + (4) bolts, OE oil pan baffles + (1) bolt.
14. Looks stock underneath! :)
15. Reversible back to stock. But why would you?
16. Weights:
       OE oil pan + baffles + balance shaft assembly + (4) bolts = 22.20 lb.
       OE oil pan + MSS baffle assembly + balance shaft oil plug/bolt = 10.40 lb.
       Total weight reduction = 11.80 lb.