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Engine Repair and Replacement FAQs

Engine Repair and Replacement

Provides explanation of terminology as well as other issues to help in deciding between engine overhaul, repair, and rebuilding vs engine replacement with a rebuilt or remanufactured engine

Is it better to repair an engine or replace it with a used or remanufactured engine?
To answer this question involves a number of factors, first and foremost being whether or not your vehicle is worth this level of investment as engine repair or replacement is generally expensive. Many of these factors are discussed in detail in two articles that can be found on the services page of our website.

If my vehicle’s engine fails, what are my options?
If your engine fails but your vehicle has enough value to justify the expense of major engine work, you have several options:

  • Repair your engine
  • Replace it with another used engine
  • Replace it with a rebuilt engine
  • Replace it with a remanufactured engine
  • Replace it with a new engine

What exactly is a “used” engine?
By definition, a “used” engine is one that is simply removed from a vehicle in a wrecking yard and sold “as is” without being taken apart for cleaning and inspection. It may have high mileage and may have an unknown maintenance and repair history. It could also be damaged from a collision since it is coming from a facility that stores and handles wrecked cars. Though a used engine from a wrecking yard may initially cost less to purchase and install than the price of a rebuilt or new engine, hidden problems can surface after the installation that may result in additional costs.

How is a used but “rebuilt” engine different than the “used” engine described above?
A rebuilt engine is a used engine that has been cleaned and inspected to replace damaged parts and possibly even some parts that are simply worn enough to warrant replacing. The skill of the mechanic who rebuilds the engine will determine the resulting quality of the engine.

How does a remanufactured engine differ from a new engine?
New engines are available for purchase from a manufacturer. The manufacturer is defined as the factory where the new car originated. Remanufactured engines are used engines that are rebuilt on a precision assembly line and reassembled with as many new components as are necessary. The result is an engine with tolerances and specifications that functions at or near its original performance when installed by the manufacturer.

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