First off, what is an engine swap? Simply put, it is removing the original engine of your car and replacing it with another engine.
And why swap engines? Well, to replace a faulty engine or improve your car’s handling, speed, and more.
Besides, most people will result to engine swapping since it is cheaper compared to buying a new car. In this article, we look at how much it costs, how long it takes, and more. So, let’s get started!
How Much Does An Engine Swap Cost?
Well, there’s no one-fits-all answer to this question since there are several factors that dictate the final cost. They include the car model, mechanic charges, and the price of spare parts, the type of engine, and others.
For example, some mechanics will charge $50, $70, or $100 per hour to swap the engine. Besides the type of engine block will also affect the cost. A short engine block is cheaper than a long block engine. A complete engine is the most expensive among the three.
When it comes to car models, sports cars fetch higher in comparison to basic family vehicles. As you can see the cost will vary depending on your car needs.
How long does it take to swap an engine?
On average, a basic engine swap will take 15 to 20 hours. Again, like the cost, several factors affect billable hours. Let’s look at three common scenarios.
1. The same engine version
This is the quickest since most of the parts bolts in easily. This can take between 4 to 12 hours.
2. Different engine with swap kits
If you want to do it alone or with a couple of friends, this is the perfect option. You are presented with a guide that takes you through every step. However, it is hard work and it will take more than 40 hours.
3. Different engine with no documentation
Well, this is the hardest type of engine swap. You can entrust your mechanic with it. But if you want to do it your way, be ready to sacrifice more than 100 hours.
Is it cheaper to rebuild an engine or replace it?
It is cheaper to rebuild an engine if the engine problems are minor. However, if the engine is dead, you are better off replacing it with another one. Replacing will also save you from other minor problems in the future such as faulty filters and belts.
What factors should you consider before an engine swap?
If you want a safe ride, ensure that the following components are compatible with the new engine. They include:
- Cooling system
- Pick-up tubes
- Fluid reservoirs
- Air conditioning
- Oil pans
- Fuel systems
- Torque converters
Once you ensure everything is compatible, you can go ahead with your engine swap.
As you can see, engine swaps are easy when done right. Do it wrong, and you’ll call your garage home. To avoid this, consult your mechanic, budget appropriately, and ensure all components run smoothly on the new engine.
Sam is Automole’s editor-in-chief and classic car enthusiast. Sam is studying mechanical engineering at Cockrell School of Engineering, Austin. He also writes for many top automotive publications and appears on the Collecting Cars Podcast.