Engine Swap Process
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HT4100 4.1, 4.5, 4.9 Discussion, Engine Swap Process in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; Hey Guys, Back a few days before christmas, my Deville was diagnosed with a cracked block beneath one of the ...
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    Cristofo's Avatar
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    Engine Swap Process

    Hey Guys, Back a few days before christmas, my Deville was diagnosed with a cracked block beneath one of the head bolts that screws into the block. After searching and saving I found an engine with 45K miles on it. Went through Dutchers Inc in NY, they have a great BBB rating. This engine has been inside on the shelf since 2000. I finally received the engine today.

    My car: 1990 4.5 Sedan Deville (used engine came from a 90 coupe).

    Day 1: Removed water pump and cleaned the backing plate as best I could with a rag and degreaser. Step 2 I will use steel wool to brush it totally clean, before I replace with a new gasket and waterpump.

    http://s1094.photobucket.com/albums/i444/cristofo/

    Since I have the engine with NO obstructions, I want to replace anything that could give me issues down the road. Any ideas on what to look for?

    Thanks,
    Chris

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    the recluse is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    I don't see a distributor in that block, did it come with one? If not, how many miles on yours? When/if you pull it to swap, check the end play in the shaft and the drive gear. Too much end play is not good and bad drive gears can lead to seemingly monster issues later.

    Pay close attention to the motor mounts when you swap the engines, the torque on these motors love to beat up the mounts; a full set can run about $250.

    When you swap out the power steering pump, remove the supply line and change the rubber O-ring. Once you start wiggling that thing around, they have a tendency to leak 10 fold.

    Check your alternator bearings for noise and end-play. Although it's not hard to change it later, it sure does suck after you put the whole thing together and you've got to go back under the hood...

    Again, i don't know your mileage, and these things might be mute.

    Nice looking engine, though

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    cadillac_al is online now Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    Those water pump hoses are hard to get at in the car. I think they may be discontinued anyway. The power steering cooler/hose usually fails. It would be nice to have a new one if they are available. Exhaust manifold gaskets are next to impossible in the car but I don't know if I would take the chance of disturbing them. I would be really pissed if they leaked after I got the motor in though. I guess I would just make sure theree are no broken studs

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    Cristofo's Avatar
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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    1. The engine didn't come with a distributor along with many other accessorys (alt, p/s pump, a/c compressor or PFI) The engine in the vehicle now has 135,000 miles on the odometer but I have no idea how old the distributor might be. So lets say 135k, should I replace it or use the one I have?

    2. Today I removed the spark plugs and they looked fine with no obvious signs of problems. I'll be using new ones anyway (havent decided what kind yet).

    3. I also attached a hose to the inlet above the thermostat and flushed a whole bunch of nasty old "crud" through and out the holes of the water pump housing inlets. After that I used steel wool and a wire brush to remove any rust/corrosion and old gasket from the backing plate (see picture)

    4. Removed the old O2 sensor.

    5. Inspected the engine visually and only noticed one thing I'll need to address. The right (front) valve cover looks slightly crushed at the corner (see picture). On the opposite side (intake side) of where this is crushed, the intake thread that holds the corner valve cover bolt is broken (see picture). This is either from overtightening the bolt or whatever crushed the valve cover probably bumped and broke the piece off the intake.

    6. I also noticed that the one intake port hole is dirty (see picture)...can I just use carb cleaner and a rag and clean it out?

    7. My next step is to remove the crank pulley (still havent thought of the best way to do this). At the moment though I was able to rotate the engine freely with a wrench. This turned the flywheel fine.

    I'm not actually doing the engine swap myself, but I'm prepping the engine myself to save some money and I enjoy doing this, especially since I have no obstructions. Also, my vehicle ran perfect before the coolant leak which turned out to be the cracked block, so the condition of my old parts should be pretty good.

    More Pics http://s1094.photobucket.com/albums/i444/cristofo/

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    the recluse is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    1) The distributors on these cars are finicky at best; one little thing wrong with it and you can chase your tail following gremlins. You can probably use yours if the car was running right in the first place.

    2) I would just put AC Delco's back in place as they work good in the engine.

    5) The covers on these cars are magnesium which is not prone to bending well. If crushed, replace; especially if you see cracks.

    7) Why are you removing the crank pulley? If you're looking for clearance all you really have to do is remove the bolt and the pulley should clear. If you want to remove the crank pulley, get a pulley puller..you can "rent" one from an automotive parts house for nothing....

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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    Thanks for the advice!

    I'm removing the pulley to install a new timing chain set.

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    the recluse is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    Just for the sake of asking, why change the timing chain on a motor with only 45k?

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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    Fair question. I'm not to familiar with the reliability of the timing setup in these engines so I'm just thinking if it will need to be changed why not do it now. I've seen it recommended when reading about buying a used engine but that's not to say its the right thing to do. my only other concern is so I can check what everything looks like in regards to condition and where the cam and crank lineup. What would you suggest and how long does a timing chain last in this engine? Can a chain and gear slip out of adjustment like a tooth and belt setup?

    Also the timing set is about 50 bucks as opposed to a few hundred down the road. I'm a little picky when it comes to my cars and this is the nicest car I've ever owned. I do appreciate the feedback I'm open to as much knowledge as I can get.

    Thanks
    Chris

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    drewsdeville is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    The timing chains in these engines are good for the life of the vehicle. Even at 200k, they show minimal slack. The GM units are of great quality. I'd advise AGAINST replacing it, as you never know what you are getting with aftermarket. The GM timing setup is good for 300k, but the aftermarket might only be good for 100k...

    I think you should save that $50 for anything else that pops up during this swap.

    Concerning a post above, these engines did not come from the factory with exhaust manifold gaskets. The head and thick manifold flange were finished with a flat enough surface that gaskets were not required. Gaskets ARE available from aftermarket manufacturer...don't install any.

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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    Great new thank you! Should I leave the timing cover gasket alone and just do the water pump and wp gasket and inlet gasket?

    After reading up on everyone's issues on leaking gaskets, I'm gonna make sure everything sets perfectly. Having the room to do so is a major plus.

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    cadillac_al is online now Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    I agree with Drew on the timing chain. Yours is low miles already and they seem to last for the life of the engine.

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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    I'm going to go with your advice and leave the timing chain alone...I will be spending that money on a GM waterpump and carefully installing it as to not have any leaks.

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    the recluse is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    Quote Originally Posted by cadillac_al View Post
    I agree with Drew on the timing chain. Yours is low miles already and they seem to last for the life of the engine.
    x3^^ That's why I asked.

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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    I could tell by your question that you were about to tell me that. This is the kind of stuff that I love about forums. It's hands on results from fellow car lovers. You get well rounded answers that have no agenda behind them. I'm fairly new to the forum and I hope eventually I can start helping others. I've been browsing this forum and there is a specific type of poster that discourages people from commenting. I'm sure I don't need to tell you his name. but casper the friendly ghost isn't so friendly.

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    Re: Engine Swap Process

    If anyone has a chance to look at the new Photobucket pics i posted I have a question regarding the upper intake port holes.

    http://s1094.photobucket.com/albums/i444/cristofo/

    As you can see there's either carbon buildup or dirt in the uncapped port hole. Can I just spray that with carb cleaner? And should I avoid spraying directly into the metal tube in the center? There is carbon or dirt build up in there also and I used some q tips soaked in cleaner. I might be handling this with kid gloves when I don't need to.

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