: Fix the engine, (HG), replace the engine?



jamie1
04-13-14, 01:33 PM
My son's '98 STS just lost the HGs. There are two re-manufacturers, both seem to have the ability to produce a good product. I don't know the price for one, (they are about to resume selling engines), the other I do. Figuring the price for just doing the HGs, I can't use either product without pulling the engine, at that point doing a complete engine makes sense. If I do it in the car, I go with the inserts, no point in NOT reworking the heads, (the engine has 133k miles), I'm cheaper but the lower end is what it is mileage wise and 16 year old gaskets and seals. New engine comes with warranty, (3yr, unlimited mileage on one, 5yr, 100k mileage for the other). If I had the time and access to a lift, I'd do the whole job, including the studs, myself. I have neither, so at this point I'm leaning towards the re-man engine, any thoughts from those that have done it either way?

Submariner409
04-13-14, 01:58 PM
Personally, I'd locate a reman engine that used studs for the cylinder block thread repair. As with all blind, online or telephone transactions, go with the company that gives the best warranty, post-sale service and advice, and seems to give an honest assessment of the pros and cons pertaining to the actual work and expected service life. There IS something to be said about a shop that is fairly local - either the original builder or one of their installers - because shipping engines back and forth for warranties is somewhat inconvenient.

As with all retail transactions, you pays your money and you gets your goods. Jasper Engines is a national rebuilder - I have seen some of their SBC and BBC work, none on the Northstar.

EDIT: IF, and only if, the engine in question has been well maintained, you probably don't need a total rebuild. These engines, yours especially, respond well to a stud job and cylinder head/cam/valve lifter overhaul without going into the lower end - UNLESS there are significant oil pan and/or halfcase seal leaks.

Ranger
04-13-14, 05:31 PM
One thing to keep in mind is that the weak link is the head bolt threads. The heads and lower end and timing chains are almost bullet proof (unless you have a leaker).

04GrandAmGT
04-14-14, 10:34 AM
One thing to keep in mind is that the weak link is the head bolt threads. The heads and lower end and timing chains are almost bullet proof (unless you have a leaker).

THAT ^

The only thing you might want to look at is the lower timing chain tensioner they have tendencies to wear out.