Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?
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Northstar Engines and System Technical Discussion Discussion, Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for? in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; Hey everyone, you have answered so many of my questions in the past without me having to even ask them, ...
  1. #1
    blueandred is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): 2003 Seville SLS
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    Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    Hey everyone, you have answered so many of my questions in the past without me having to even ask them, I figured it's time to actually ask! lol. long story short, my seville is getting a salvage engine installed with a 6 month warrentee. (HG issues, best route). Before the "new" motor goes in, what should I pre-emptivly repair/replace to avoid large repair costs after it's installed....like maybe replacing the TCC solenoid in my trans while it's out...?

    Thanks!
    -Kevin

    2003 Seville SLS, 107,000miles

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    vincentm's Avatar
    vincentm is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Stud the replacement engine.., reseal it, replace CKP's, plenum duct, TCC solenoids and TCC seal.

    All hoses, including heater hoses too, at least, i would

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    blueandred is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    Thanks vincentm, for the plenum duct are you referring to the the plenum on the TB between that and the manifold?

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    vincentm's Avatar
    vincentm is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Quote Originally Posted by blueandred View Post
    Thanks vincentm, for the plenum duct are you referring to the the plenum on the TB between that and the manifold?
    Yup.

  6. #5
    blueandred is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    Thanks. it's on my to do list now.

  7. #6
    Ranger's Avatar
    Ranger is online now Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    The plenum duct is no big deal. That can be done anytime it fails without much work. Considering it's a 2000+ I would definitely replace the TC, seal and solenoid. It's almost bound to fail (or leak) sooner or later.

    Studding or inserting the replacement engine is up to you. Being a 2000+ engine it is less likely to fail, but there are no guarantees. Studding or inserting it will remove the possibilities of a future failure, but will add a good $1000 or more to the replacement cost. Tough choice.

  8. #7
    blueandred is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    Thanks Ranger. I replaced the plenum on my wifes DTS with no problems so that's no big deal, just wanted to make sure we were talking about the same thing. it's out so it might be easier to do but i wasn't that difficult in the car either. my 2000 SLS started having too many issues when it hit 190k so I decided to get my current 2003 but it ended up having HG issues so the dealer is replacing the engine at their cost (my Caddy mechanic though). definately gonna do the TCC and the rear mains.

  9. #8
    stoveguyy is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    How did u get dealer to replace ur motor?

  10. #9
    blueandred is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    stoveguy, i bought it on agreement but with no warrentee, to not have leaks, drips or HG issues. (106k miles) it overheated 20 miles from the dealer. thougth it was air bubbles from new water pump they installed. leaked the next day. they fixed that leak, overheated again, new leak now...they fixed that leak...overheated again. took it to my local mechanic who's a caddy mechanic with his own shop...diagnosed bad HG. Dealer is paying him to install a used, with warrentee, motor they are shipping to him. no arguments,ever, from the dealer. excellent folks. they got stuck with a bad HG on a trade, sold it to me and are fixing the problem. This is the type of dealer that will get my return business! (even if they are 110 mile drive!) Pfeiffer in Grand Rapids MI.

  11. #10
    stoveguyy is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    I know by 03 headgaskets were more reliable, but. How complete is new used motor? Coils, intake, accessories?

  12. #11
    blueandred is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    it's a complete assembly. inspecting it tomorrow when it comes in. I'll probabaly pull the new water pump off my engine and swap it and it'll get new plugs before it goes in. that's why I was getting opinions on what to replace. pretty much what I thought but I appreciate the suggestions for sure.

  13. #12
    Submariner409's Avatar
    Submariner409 is offline If it won't run, slap in a big stereo
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    I hate to say this off-the-cuff, but drop-in used Northstars can be a real crapshoot - with no 7's or 11's.

  14. #13
    blueandred is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    Submariner409, yup, I agree but it's basically a freebee and my mechanic can inspect it the best he can. it has a warrentee at least so it helps my odds. Better than money out of my pocket. We're gonna run the vin when it shows up and get a history (what we can) on the engine. I do know it's coming from a trusted source. Otherwise, the car is in perfect shape. Besides, I've never played craps. lol. I'll definately post the results after I've had it running for awhile.

  15. #14
    stoveguyy is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    If the exterior of motor looks good than that's all you can really inspect a motor on a skid.

  16. #15
    blueandred is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Replacing a Northstar in my 2003 Seville...what should I check for?

    yup. I agree but it's the best option I have and it's not costing me anything but time. I just figure to up my odds I would replace parts that have tendancies to go bad but require extensive work do to having to pull/access the motor. TCC, Main seal..etc. it's out so the labor for me will be minimal. parts are cheap for these fixes. Good or Bad, the motor will not have a HG problem when I get the car back. OTher wise it's a ton of cash lost that I can't afford. Never know, I might get the original motor back...give me a project to work on, learn from. What I'm looking for is just some insight into what I could replace to up those odds for me. Thanks.

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