The Difficulty of Replacing a Car’s Engine

Examining if Replacing Your Car Engine Is Actually Worth It, or If It’s Time to Go Car Shopping

All car owners have different stories that define their time owning a car. These will vary from person-to-person as the cars we own are different and our driving needs are so diverse. 

One thing that all car owners agree on is a disdain for needing vehicle repairs. There is a special level of disappointment that comes with experiencing engine problems. If you’ve ever had a blown engine, you know how fast you can go from seemingly having a reliable vehicle to visiting used car dealerships for a replacement. 

When these situations hit drivers, many are left with more questions than answers. Is your engine really damaged? Can it be repaired? Is it worth it to buy a new engine? 

Let’s take a look at how you can answer some of these questions and how to proceed when you deal with a damaged engine. 

Is Your Engine Damaged?

Not everyone can identify issues with their vehicle as they arise. Sometimes, we just know something is off and want to address it. If you’re not sure if your engine is what is causing your car trouble, look for the following warning signs of a damaged engine.

  • Check engine light comes on
  • Roughness or inconsistency while idling or driving
  • Oil patches on the ground beneath your car
  • Strange noises
  • Higher gas consumption than normal
  • Black, gray, or dark blue smoke from exhaust
  • Unusual odors

If you start to notice any of these signs out of your vehicle, stop driving the vehicle, and get in contact with a trusted mechanic ASAP to avoid further damage.

Is Your Engine Worth Repairing?

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After experiencing warning signs and getting your vehicle to a mechanic, there is still a chance that you don’t need a brand new engine. The luckiest drivers are able to replace a belt or hose and get back on the road.

Other drivers aren’t so lucky and are faced with replacing systems like the radiator or transmission. While these systems aren’t quite as expensive to replace as an entire engine, they can be costly enough for some drivers to consider a new vehicle, especially if it’s just another problem in a long line of recent repairs. 

Do You Need a New Engine? Is Buying a New Engine Worth It?

Because car engines are just big systems made up of smaller systems, the entire engine is connected. This cohesion causes major damage to spread quickly throughout the entire engine, since each system relies on others. Unfortunately for many drivers, most engines that are severely damaged from lack of lubrication, major piston misfires, and other issues are beyond repair, and replacement is the only option they have to keep their car. 

Many drivers contemplate whether purchasing a new engine is a better option for them than buying a new vehicle. In some cases, like these, people choose to repair or replace:

  • Warranty Coverage: This is a no brainer. If your vehicle is still under manufacturer warranty, replacement will be your best and most affordable option. In addition to traditional warranties, be sure to research recalls on the vehicle as well in case the engine is covered under one.
  • Insurance Coverage: Drivers who have insurance that will pay for an engine or vehicle replacement – particularly if the engine was damaged in a collision – will usually find that to be the best choice for them. In most cases, you just have to pay your deductible and follow the process of your insurance company. 
  • Affordable Option: Some drivers have connections to mechanics or are lucky enough to find an affordable replacement option that makes replacement worth it for them. Be sure you are working with a trusted shop or mechanic. Remember that when it comes to vehicle repairs, what seems too good to be true usually is. 
  • Special Connection With Vehicle: We’ve all had that one car that holds a special place in our hearts. It could be your first car or the first one you bought. No matter if it’s because you drove it during college or had to live out of it, you just have that connection, and you aren’t ready to part with your car yet. In these cases, engine replacement is the only option to keep the memories flowing in that car.
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If You Start Experiencing Engine Issues, You Have Options to Proceed

Car trouble is inevitable. The best things we can do as drivers are to take preventative measures and be informed and prepared for those times when we’ll need car repairs. If you start to experience warning signs of engine damage, don’t panic. Remember your options and proceed accordingly. It won’t be fun, but it will be easier to navigate when you know what to expect.

You might find yourself deciding between engine replacement and a new car altogether. If you were already wanting more from your car or experiencing other issues at the time of the engine failure, it’s probably time to start exploring some used car dealerships near you.