dropping cradle: what would you replace preemptively
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Northstar Engines and System Technical Discussion Discussion, dropping cradle: what would you replace preemptively in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; 96 Concours, 170K miles, all in northern California. HG cracked, leaking coolant, overheating so I'm going to have the engine ...
  1. #1
    spotty is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): 96 Concours
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    Oct 2006
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    dropping cradle: what would you replace preemptively

    96 Concours, 170K miles, all in northern California.

    HG cracked, leaking coolant, overheating so I'm going to have the engine dropped and replaced with a GM reman (&@%! those aren't cheap!). It's a bigger project than I feel comfortable tackling on my own so I'm outsourcing to a local shop.

    While the engine is out, what other things should I have replaced? (recently done: radiator, a/c compressor, alternator)

    In order to drop the engine, I believe the a/c has to be evacuated. Should I have the evaporator core replaced? Do they corrode, or should I expect the existing one to go another 100K?

    I think the heater core comes out from the dash, but the FSM says it needs to come out to do the evap core. If I don't need to worry about the evap core, I'll do the heater core later.

    I'm definitely having the plastic blower case (inside the engine compartment just behind the engine) replaced because it's brittle and cracking. Also going to have new heater pipes (2 run behind the engine) put in.

    I think there is a short in the main engine wiring harness between the shield of the LF WSS and some other wire (can't tell which). Not sure where the harness is damaged, hoping I'll be able to spot it visually once it's out and off the old engine. I have wired a workaround for the WSS, but am worried that there might be other damage waiting to manifest itself. GM doesn't sell the harness anymore, so it's either fix this one or find a used one (advice welcome here: has anyone installed a used N* harness? How could you be sure it didn't have problems beforehand?)

    I'm also having struts replaced; at 170K they are showing signs of age. Planning on using aftermarket passive struts, maybe from Arnott. Can anyone comment on the durability and ride of the Arnotts or any of the other passive replacements?

    Anything else I should consider doing while the engine is out?

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  3. #2
    Ranger's Avatar
    Ranger is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): White Diamond '03 DHS (with DTS floor shift)
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    Re: dropping cradle: what would you replace preemptively

    In order to drop the engine, I believe the a/c has to be evacuated. Should I have the evaporator core replaced? Do they corrode, or should I expect the existing one to go another 100K?
    I think the compressor can be disconnected and left with the car without opening the system.

  4. #3
    tateos's Avatar
    tateos is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
    Automobile(s): 1997 ETC (GAVE TO STEPSON 2011), 2000 DTS (RIP)
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    Re: dropping cradle: what would you replace preemptively

    Why not replace the struts with used struts in decent condition from a junkyard and keep your car riding like it was designed?

  5. #4
    misfit6794 is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
    Automobile(s): 1996 Deville (sold), 2000 Mustang GT
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    Re: dropping cradle: what would you replace preemptively

    Short answer, everything you can afford to. Anything that may fail soon would be a good idea to get out of the way, while its so easy to get to. Especially any seals that look sketchy.

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