Cadillac Owners Forum banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
2008 Cts 3.6 DI
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So just recently my 2008 CTS DI engine locked up just a few days ago. When I was driving the car, the engine simply shut off. So I had the car towed to the dealership to find out that the car was low on oil causing the engine lock up. (Please don't blast me in the comments but no check engine light nor indication alerted us that the car was low on oil) Now the quote I've received back came around 8 grand and some change not including labor to get the engine replaced. Some people and the dealership are telling me to get a new one. But we want a car note and we've become pretty attached to this particular car. Mostly because it is hard to find another 2008 CTS DI (Hot Lava). This is my mother's car and she has worked very hard to get it, and I don't want her to spend any additional money on top of everything. So I want to do the Engine Swap myself with absolutely not that much experience with working with cars. But It is not a hard concept for me to learn. I'm not asking for someone to hold my hand give me step by step directions. I just want to be pointed in the right direction, like things I should look out for or keep note of. I have access to all of the tools needed. Hopefully, you all can help me. Thanks!
574310
 

·
Registered
08 CTS DI
Joined
·
2,301 Posts
Welcome to the forum and sorry to hear of such misfortune. Your experience is one not unheard of before as well as a danger many were fortunate enough to arrive here on this forum early enough to learn to protect against with routine oil level checks, as some motors use oil and and some circumstances can develop over time that could cause a motor to start using oil where it did not before.

Since you have the tools, your investment will be time. Since you do not have experience with such a task, you need a good shop manual, original, or aftermarket to source for details. Try ebay for a set of GM shop manuals, or another source that provides replacement instructions. It is not impossible, but it can be a tedious process, especially if you're in a rush.

Car-part.com is a good source to look for a used low mileage motor at a very good price and some auto salvagers will install them, there are also remanufactured motors, but in my experience and opinion, a known running when shelved GM original, is a better risk cost wise unless the motor is coming from GM. Make sure you get the correct motor in accordance with the VIN number, direct injected vs. port injected.

This is the most recent thread I'm aware of involving engine replacement and there is a video linked to in it as well;


Spend some time searching the forum for more insight. Here's another that might help;

 

·
Registered
2008 Cts 3.6 DI
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Welcome to the forum and sorry to hear of such misfortune. Your experience is one not unheard of before as well as a danger many were fortunate enough to arrive here on this forum early enough to learn to protect against with routine oil level checks, as some motors use oil and and some circumstances can develop over time that could cause a motor to start using oil where it did not before.

Since you have the tools, your investment will be time. Since you do not have experience with such a task, you need a good shop manual, original, or aftermarket to source for details. Try ebay for a set of GM shop manuals, or another source that provides replacement instructions. It is not impossible, but it can be a tedious process, especially if you're in a rush.

Car-part.com is a good source to look for a used low mileage motor at a very good price and some auto salvagers will install them, there are also remanufactured motors, but in my experience and opinion, a known running when shelved GM original, is a better risk cost wise unless the motor is coming from GM. Make sure you get the correct motor in accordance with the VIN number, direct injected vs. port injected.

This is the most recent thread I'm aware of involving engine replacement and there is a video linked to in it as well;


Spend some time searching the forum for more insight. Here's another that might help;

Thank you so much!
 

·
Registered
Go ahead, blame me. Everybody does 🙄
Joined
·
9,584 Posts
Hot Lava is a standout color, I can see why you want to preserve it.
Best of luck with the project, Brandon -
Welcome to the forums.
 

·
Registered
2008 Cts 3.6 DI
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Welcome to the forum and sorry to hear of such misfortune. Your experience is one not unheard of before as well as a danger many were fortunate enough to arrive here on this forum early enough to learn to protect against with routine oil level checks, as some motors use oil and and some circumstances can develop over time that could cause a motor to start using oil where it did not before.

Since you have the tools, your investment will be time. Since you do not have experience with such a task, you need a good shop manual, original, or aftermarket to source for details. Try ebay for a set of GM shop manuals, or another source that provides replacement instructions. It is not impossible, but it can be a tedious process, especially if you're in a rush.

Car-part.com is a good source to look for a used low mileage motor at a very good price and some auto salvagers will install them, there are also remanufactured motors, but in my experience and opinion, a known running when shelved GM original, is a better risk cost wise unless the motor is coming from GM. Make sure you get the correct motor in accordance with the VIN number, direct injected vs. port injected.

This is the most recent thread I'm aware of involving engine replacement and there is a video linked to in it as well;


Spend some time searching the forum for more insight. Here's another that might help;

Actually I had a question. So a month ago I had the car serviced for the door handles to be replaced because we would sometimes get locked out of the car. Now during the repair, the dealership performed a "27 point inspection". Now if they so-called did the inspection and topped the oil off, My car shouldn't have ran out of oil within a month. And the dealership confirmed that there was no leak at all. Now is it possible that it was the car or the lack of honesty from the dealership? Because I believe that there is no way for the car to run out of oil within a month.
 

·
Registered
08 CTS DI
Joined
·
2,301 Posts
Actually I had a question. So a month ago I had the car serviced for the door handles to be replaced because we would sometimes get locked out of the car. Now during the repair, the dealership performed a "27 point inspection". Now if they so-called did the inspection and topped the oil off, My car shouldn't have ran out of oil within a month. And the dealership confirmed that there was no leak at all. Now is it possible that it was the car or the lack of honesty from the dealership? Because I believe that there is no way for the car to run out of oil within a month.
I understand your thinking on this, but first, keep in mind that vehicle maintenance is the owners responsibility. If you paid them to top off the oil as a part of that service and the mileage driven since that time is absurdly too low for the car to have used that much oil in that distance, you might very well have a case, provided you have a receipt and a lawyer to back you, because I doubt any company would voluntarily accept responsibility for this outcome, given the amount of "wiggle" room present due to the time that has passed. Unfortunately some, or all of the second gen CTS models do not have a low oil level warning and checking at least once a month at a minimum is probably the common rule among members in this forum.

If the 27 point inspection was free, rest assured they will not accept blame. In my experience of having worked in the automotive industry before, a good bit of those 27 points were not performed and checking the oil might have been one of them. The inspection is an opportunity to drum up business. Oil changes amount to beans as far as profits are concerned, so you can bet they're not thinking about your oil when they're inspecting your car. Brakes, tires, suspension parts, low material investment maintenance with high profits like fuel system cleaning, transmission flush, brake system flush, radiator flush, services that have a high labor ratio to supplies and materials vs. an oil change which for decades has been used to bait the proverbial hook to get customers into the shop.

Check with your insurance company after doing some web searching on the possibility this may in some way be covered.

What I would like to know is;
What's the mileage?
What mileage interval is the oil changed at?
How many miles were driven from the service to the engine failure approximately?
Have you gone and checked the oil level yourself? From what I've read regarding this type of failure, the 3.6L usually suffers oil starvation right around the 2 quart level in the pan so that means when the motor is about 3 qts low, considering there are several pan types among the same make and model that will vary pan capacity as well as the effect of engine rpm pumping it out of the pan faster as it increases.
 

·
Registered
2008 Cts 3.6 DI
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
I understand your thinking on this, but first, keep in mind that vehicle maintenance is the owners responsibility. If you paid them to top off the oil as a part of that service and the mileage driven since that time is absurdly too low for the car to have used that much oil in that distance, you might very well have a case, provided you have a receipt and a lawyer to back you, because I doubt any company would voluntarily accept responsibility for this outcome, given the amount of "wiggle" room present due to the time that has passed. Unfortunately some, or all of the second gen CTS models do not have a low oil level warning and checking at least once a month at a minimum is probably the common rule among members in this forum.

If the 27 point inspection was free, rest assured they will not accept blame. In my experience of having worked in the automotive industry before, a good bit of those 27 points were not performed and checking the oil might have been one of them. The inspection is an opportunity to drum up business. Oil changes amount to beans as far as profits are concerned, so you can bet they're not thinking about your oil when they're inspecting your car. Brakes, tires, suspension parts, low material investment maintenance with high profits like fuel system cleaning, transmission flush, brake system flush, radiator flush, services that have a high labor ratio to supplies and materials vs. an oil change which for decades has been used to bait the proverbial hook to get customers into the shop.

Check with your insurance company after doing some web searching on the possibility this may in some way be covered.

What I would like to know is;
What's the mileage?
What mileage interval is the oil changed at?
How many miles were driven from the service to the engine failure approximately?
Have you gone and checked the oil level yourself? From what I've read regarding this type of failure, the 3.6L usually suffers oil starvation right around the 2 quart level in the pan so that means when the motor is about 3 qts low, considering there are several pan types among the same make and model that will vary pan capacity as well as the effect of engine rpm pumping it out of the pan faster as it increases.
The car is around 106,000 miles
I get the oil change whenever the car prompt that I need an oil change
I would say I drove the car about 1,000 miles before the engine failure
And I haven't checked the oil level myself.
 

·
Registered
08 CTS DI
Joined
·
2,301 Posts
The car is around 106,000 miles
I get the oil change whenever the car prompt that I need an oil change
I would say I drove the car about 1,000 miles before the engine failure
And I haven't checked the oil level myself.
That's what I was suspecting. At some point in the CTS history, particularly around the extended life oil change interval concept, which I believe was around the start of the second generation, several motors were run very low on oil and subsequently ruined, because somewhere in the flow of that good idea, apparently no one recalled that the GM allowable oil consumption rate per 1000 miles, could result in an oil user drawing the oil level down too low by the time the oil change indicator lit up and that's exactly what happened to enough owners to the extent that GM through recall, lowered the oil change interval.

It's easy for some to blame the owner, but when you condition consumers for years to follow vehicle indicated oil changes with a more practical and trouble free 5-7000 mile oil change interval, and then increase it to as high as 10,0000 plus, we as creatures of habit are going to follow the same routine, not realizing the setup to fail. Those who change their own oil would be most likely to see the danger when they notice a particularly low waste oil level upon draining it.

I have read that the 3.6L in some cases starts to use oil when the timing chains are nearing replacement time. I didn't notice it in my car, but then my oil change interval was 3000 miles. After replacing the timing chains I moved it to 5000 miles. The timing chains often trigger an engine light code around 120,000 miles, but some have encountered it in under 100,000 miles. Timing chain elongation/wear could very well have played a part in your normal routine suddenly turning out bad, unless during the last oil change it was under filled. I have seen a technician drive a car out of a shop with no oil in the motor, because two people were working on the car and each thought the other had filled it.

1000 miles is not far enough to use that much oil and you not know it has a problem before hand. It would have locked up a long time ago at that rate.
 

·
Registered
2013 Black Diamond CTS4 Premium Coupe (sold-09 CTS4 DI Black Raven/Ebony)
Joined
·
4,372 Posts
"If" they performed the 27 point inspection, the most they would do is check the oil level and tell you it was low. They do not top off the oil during that check. That is all "if" they did the check. I'd say it's a 99% chance that they didn't do it. My dealer is supposed to do it every time the car is in the shop. They never do it. Corporate wants them to do it to catch problems but they just don't take the time. That experience from 3 different dealers near me. One of those dealers did an oil change on my car. The most communication I got from the service adviser was "you can pay at the cashier window there". Really. He wasn't around when I brought the car in. A lot attendant took it in. He wasn't seen while the technician did the work. I was pointed where to pay and I never did get his name. Yea, crap for customer service there. No surprise that Caddy dealer was abandonded and the property traded to Subaru to get a Chevy dealer in another town.
That all being said, talk to the manager, but don't get your hopes up. Maybe you can pointout you are relying on them to point out a problem and maybe you can get a discount on the work.
 

·
Super Moderator
2014 ELR
Joined
·
10,040 Posts
And I haven't checked the oil level myself.
This is becoming more and more common. People just expect things to work with no maintenance. My brother in law has been through two timing sets on his Ecotec... no oil checking. We've gotten some great cars at the school shop donated simply because people don't check oil.

I will offer this advice: buy an electric car. Not a slam or slight. I'm serious. It will work every day like your phone. Use it all day, plug it in at night. You'll never change brakes, and do a set of tires every five years or so. No oil to check...
 

·
Registered
08 CTS DI
Joined
·
2,301 Posts
This is becoming more and more common. People just expect things to work with no maintenance. My brother in law has been through two timing sets on his Ecotec... no oil checking. We've gotten some great cars at the school shop donated simply because people don't check oil.

I will offer this advice: buy an electric car. Not a slam or slight. I'm serious. It will work every day like your phone. Use it all day, plug it in at night. You'll never change brakes, and do a set of tires every five years or so. No oil to check...
"And I haven't checked the oil level myself." was in response to my question asking if he checked behind the dealer to confirm their stating it's out of oil. He has every right to expect the service shop to do what they said they were going to do, to help prevent things like this from happening. That expectation counts as an attempt at maintenance under the circumstance. Good thing it wasn't his doctor delivering that kind of performance for a checkup.
 

·
Registered
08 CTS none DI 3.6
Joined
·
299 Posts
I just finished the replacement of my 08 none DI and can state that it can be done out the top. My replacement motor ended up costing a little under $4000 including new motor mounts, fuel injectors, cam position solenoids and the crate motor. As mine had locked up there was metal all over the place and I just didn't feel safe in having it rebuilt. I have a 5 year no fault unlimited milage warranty on the motor. If you do decide to do this yourself label and bag all the bolts and where they came from. Take a ton of pictures before and during the removal process. I did most of the work myself but had help when the actual removal and replacement happened as it's very tight. One big thing that helped me was to have the oil pan off, gives a lot more clearance and allowed me access to the torque converter bolts. As mine was locked tight I had to loosen the mains to spin the old motor.
 

·
Registered
2013 Black Diamond CTS4 Premium Coupe (sold-09 CTS4 DI Black Raven/Ebony)
Joined
·
4,372 Posts
Show him the special engine stand required to do the job. (y) :p
 

·
Registered
Go ahead, blame me. Everybody does 🙄
Joined
·
9,584 Posts
The car is around 106,000 miles
I get the oil change whenever the car prompt that I need an oil change
I would say I drove the car about 1,000 miles before the engine failure
And I haven't checked the oil level myself.
Unfortunately, you probably won't get anywhere going after the entity who performed the 27 point "inspection".
They are just money grabs for dealers to drum up business.

The problem with these engines (one of the problems anyway) is that they can begin to use oil at any time.
Just because it didn't use oil between the last interval does not mean it won't during the next cycle. The oil level in these mills needs to be scrutinized on the regular.
There are many on this forum who learned the hard way.

Just changed my oil tonight after 9,600 miles with 6% life remaining on the OLM.
 

·
Registered
2008 Cts 3.6 DI
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Welcome to the forum and sorry to hear of such misfortune. Your experience is one not unheard of before as well as a danger many were fortunate enough to arrive here on this forum early enough to learn to protect against with routine oil level checks, as some motors use oil and and some circumstances can develop over time that could cause a motor to start using oil where it did not before.

Since you have the tools, your investment will be time. Since you do not have experience with such a task, you need a good shop manual, original, or aftermarket to source for details. Try ebay for a set of GM shop manuals, or another source that provides replacement instructions. It is not impossible, but it can be a tedious process, especially if you're in a rush.

Car-part.com is a good source to look for a used low mileage motor at a very good price and some auto salvagers will install them, there are also remanufactured motors, but in my experience and opinion, a known running when shelved GM original, is a better risk cost wise unless the motor is coming from GM. Make sure you get the correct motor in accordance with the VIN number, direct injected vs. port injected.

This is the most recent thread I'm aware of involving engine replacement and there is a video linked to in it as well;


Spend some time searching the forum for more insight. Here's another that might help;

Do you know if there are any other websites that may sell engines?
 

·
Registered
08 CTS DI
Joined
·
2,301 Posts
Do you know if there are any other websites that may sell engines?
Assuming you're still trying to maintain a good budget approach, car-part.com is the best site for locating a motor that I know of. Second best is ebay and it might actually need to be listed as first because I have seen low mileage LFX (later design) motors for as low as $400 within 60 miles of home, provided it's picked up. Both sites will allow you to zero in within a desired distance of your home as you enter your zip code (left column for ebay) and dial in your search range requirements. Most sellers will deliver also.

Things to keep in mind considering the 2008 LLT tends to be on the expensive side with high mileage in used form;

The short blocks should be interchangeable between the LLT and later model LFX motor, so putting LLT heads on an LFX short block is a positive cost and quality wise, but I would caution this hybrid to anyone that has never built a motor before, although it's not complicated. In your case you have a motor that likely has metal shavings throughout, so the heads would need to be completely rebuilt and parts such as the cam actuators and lifters replaced as a precaution to avoid contaminating a new motor, not to mention rebuilding the heads is not a cheap venue unless you're able to do it yourself. If you could get the current heads cleaned and all associated parts flushed really good, then head gaskets and new head bolts would be all that's necessary to swap them on to an LFX short block.

The difference in an AWD and RWD motor is the oil pan and that can be swapped, as well as timing covers if necessary, always use the engine wire harness that came with the car to be sure of a perfect match unless a swap can be confirmed compatible otherwise. Make sure all sensors from a swap motor are compatible also, some LFX sensors are different; mass airflow, throttle body, etc... but you'll have the old sensors as needed.

There are a number of remanufactured engine sources available, to include your local parts stores, but I have yet to encounter one that has past my personal test of trust after reading their reviews, not to mention the expense of time and over cost that could result if you get a bad rebuilt motor. In my experience a used good, low mileage motor, still in its factory assembly sealants is always better than a remanufactured motor at two to three times the cost, because you have no idea of what corners may have been cut in the remanufacturing process, especially on a motor that is already pretty expensive to rebuild yourself depending on the extent of your intended effort.

I've done this kind of thing as a hobby many times before and could accomplish this repair with a very low cost, relative to the going rate, but it's not the kind of thing I would care to face by surprise, because it's a lot of work. Take your time and think it through.
 

·
Registered
2013 Black Diamond CTS4 Premium Coupe (sold-09 CTS4 DI Black Raven/Ebony)
Joined
·
4,372 Posts
I've used LKQ in the past for parts. They're like car-part, and I've found them to be honest on their descriptions.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top