Engine Replacement Costs | Labor Costs – Bridwell

Engine Replacement Cost

If you are searching for “Engine Replacement Cost”, “Engine Replacement Labor Cost”, “Engine Rebuild Cost”, “Average Cost Of Engine Swap” or “How Much Does It Cost To Replace A Car Engine”, this post should help! If your vehicle is showing blown engine signs you know a repair bill is coming. Learn about how much engine replacement or rebuild costs.

More than other failures on a car, there is nothing that is like a blown engine. You can smash the front end, set it on fire, blow a gasket, but it is still a broken car. Once the engine is gone, then it will stop being a car and it becomes more like an abandoned and echoing home.

However, better times are on their way because there is very little around that is as joyful as the moment when the empty shell becomes whole again and better than it was before through quality engine replacement. How much engine replacement will cost depends on the type of vehicle, brand, and other factors that will be discussed below.

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Engine Replacement Cost 2019

  • Short Block Engine Replacement: $4000 to $8000
  • Long Block Engine Replacement: $3000 to $7000

Complete engines will often include everything that it needs to run and sometimes include every sensor, electronic part and accessory. It is these types of replacements that are rare unless it is under warranty. Long block engines are the whole engine without the electrical equipment, manifolds, and accessories. Normally, engine replacements will include just the long block. A short block is just the long block without the heads or cylinder head. Then after 2014, an average American or Japanese V-6 or 4-cylinder long block will cost about $4000 to $8000 from a quality manufacturer. A short block will normally go for $3000 to $7000 and the complete bolt in style engines will be double the price for a long block. You should expect to double everything for a European engine, especially if they are performance oriented or rare. You can cut the costs often by over half just by purchasing a junkyard engine, but then there isn’t a guarantee that it will be in better shape then the one that you removed.

Engine Replacement Cost Factors

There are many factors that need to be considered when you are deciding engine replacement, one of which is how you define an engine. First you have to decide if you need a new long or short block or a whole engine. Next you have to find what type of make and type of engine that you are dealing with and where you will get the new one. A brand-new engine that comes from a warehouse is going to cost much more than one that you get in a junkyard or a re-manufactured four-cylinder engine. Next, you have to think about age. Normally, engine replacements for Japanese and domestic cars will become more expensive as automobiles become newer simply because a newer engine will be much more expensive to start with and they can be harder to get if it is used. Lastly, you have to think about where you will have it replaced at and just how quickly that it needs to be done.

Luxury, Performance and Diesel Engine Replacement Cost

  • Diesel engine replacement: $7000 to $13000

Just to give you some perspective: Replacing a 16.4-liter long block for a Bugatti Veyron will be around $360,000 and a Ferrari Enzo long block is about the same. That does not even include shipping, but it does have a 30-day guarantee. Then for a complete LS7 crate Engine for a Corvette Z06 from GM is a bit of a bargain at $15,000. Then for a 6.3-liter LS3 crate engine for the newer Chevrolet Camaro SS is about $6500. This is going to be around the cost for many domestic V-8 cars. For between $7000 to $13000, you can purchase rebuilt Diesel engines and for between $3000 to $4500 you can get a Ford long block. Around $8500 will get you V-8 long block for an old Rolls Royce while the more current and updated engines that come from Rolls Royce will cost over $45,000.

Engine Replacement Labor Costs

  • Engine Replacement Labor Cost: $125 to $150 an hour

Labor may easily cost you just as much as purchasing an engine especially if you go to a specialist or dealer. A basic garage may cost you between $125 to $150 per hour, while a specialist or dealer can cost you between $250 or more. A normal engine replacement for an older car such as one from the 1980s could be about 10 hours of work, although it may be more like 15. You should expect between 15 to 25 hours of labor for an average engine replacement on a new vehicle.

A big part of that will come down to just how much work that the shop will have to do to put old engine parts on the new block, which is where you could end up losing money by purchasing a long block or short block. It actually pays to spend some money upfront, especially if the time of the mechanic is going to cost you. These are the factors that you will have to think about. You may end up spending around a minimum of $1500 for labor for the replacement of a complete engine by a local garage to more than $5000 if you pay a specialist to take apart your old engine and assemble the new engine from a short block and then install it in your car.

Total Engine Replacement Cost

  • Used Engine Replacement: $2500 – $7500
  • New Engine Replacement (Dealership): $12000 – $15000
  • New Engine Replacement (Auto Repair Shop): $8000 to $12000

After everything above, it is clear just how huge of a gap in price that the replacement can be, even on the same car. Doing a DIY replacement of a 1998 Camaro Engine may cost you less than $950, if you purchased a remanufactured short block and do all the work on your own. Or it could cost around $7500 if you purchase a complete crate engine and pay a dealer to install it. That is a big gap in price just with one car with a common engine.

The average engine replacement – corner garage, average, long block, 10-year-old car should cost between $3000 to $4000. You should expect to spend extra 50% to almost double for a luxury or European car. You should keep in mind that the rarer that the engine and car are, the more expensive a replacement will cost. A fully loaded Porsche Cayenne and Cadillac Escalade are not that far apart when it comes to price when it is new, but the LS engine for the Escalade is very common in the U.S. The engine for the Porsche is not that common, but you have to remember a bolt is a bolt and an engine is just an engine.

At your local garage it may be around $125 per hour and they should not have a hard time replacing the engine for the Porsche as they would with a Cadillac. Be sure to shop around for labor rates and the guarantees before you decide to pay a specialist.

Engine Rebuild Cost

Rebuilt engines costs between $2,500 to $6,000 dollars in labor and the cost of parts. In addition to removing and reinstalling your engine common repairs will include replacing seals and bearings. More involved engine rebuilds cost more when cylinder heads cannot be be saved or if the crankshaft has been damaged. The pistons can also be damaged if your car gets too hot or a part of your engine fails.

The more involved and time consuming the rebuild the higher the cost will be. If your engine block is cracked or badly damaged rebuild isn’t really an option and you’ll need engine replacement instead. In the case your engine has seized replacement is the only option for repairing your vehicle. When an engine seizes it means that the metal pistons and cylinder walls got far too hot and have melted together.

Engine Replacement Warning Signs

There is a fine line when it comes to cost when an engine rebuild isn’t the best repair plan for your vehicle. Engine replacement is many times a less costly option than completely rebuilding a heavily damaged engine. Here are 3 blow engine signs to help you make a decision or trust the advice of your repair mechanic.

1. Catastrophic Engine Failure

Clearly this is one of the easiest signs that your engine is blown. If there’s a massive puddle of your engine’s oil with chunks of your engine in it, you’ve got a problem. If your vehicle stopped suddenly and there’s pieces of your engine in a pool of oil on the road, you’re going to need to replace your engine.

2. Engine Stops Suddenly & Loudly

If you hear a loud noise and your engine suddenly stops you have likely seized it. This happens if the oil has ran out or you have likely overheated. Excessive heat can melt your cylinder walls and pistons which can fuse them together. Once the engine fuses together replacement is the only option.

3. Neglecting Engine Maintenance & Repairs

Some engine problems are ones that drivers choose to ignore. If you’re check engine light has been on for months or even years or you’ve been ignoring a rough running engine damage has probably progressed. If the damage is severe enough an engine rebuild may be more costly than simply replacing the engine.

Professional Engine Replacement Services in Scottsdale/Phoenix, Arizona

If you need engine replacement in Scottsdale/Phoenix, Bridwell Automotive Center can help! Bridwell can help with engine repair, engine replacement, rebuilt engines and more. Our ASE Certified Technicians are trained, qualified, and well equipped to perform engine replacements on virtually any type of vehicle. Bring it to Bridwell to get affordable, reliable, and timely engine replacement in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Leaking Antifreeze But Not Overheating

Leaking AntiFreeze But Not Overheating

If you’re leaking antifreeze but not overheating or you have a car leaking antifreeze when parked, you still have a chance to repair your vehicle for a lower cost. If you continue to drive your car with low antifreeze your vehicle will eventually overheat.

An overheating engine can cause more problems especially if you let it go too long and end end up cracking your block. Chances are you have either a radiator cap leak, internal coolant leak or an external coolant leak.   The longer you wait the higher the coolant leak repair cost will be.  Learn how to diagnose your antifreeze leak and learn what to do next.

Coolant Leak Inspection & Diagnostic Services

If you are experiencing coolant leaks in Scottsdale, Arizona, Bridwell Auto Repair can help. Our ASE certified mechanics have experience in repairing all types of coolant leaks.  It’s quick and easy to schedule an appointment with Bridwell Automotive Center.  Simply call and let us know what’s been going on with your vehicle, or if you need a tow to our shop for repairs.  Remember driving while your engine is overheating or your coolant system is malfunctioning can lead to expensive repairs like engine replacement.

Identify The Reason For Your Coolant To Be Leaking

It can be narrowed down to three common core reasons as to why the coolants leaks, with each of those reasons varying in other possibilities and also in the extent of the damage. If you have recently noticed an accumulation of coolant under your vehicle or that the reservoir tank is not as high up as it usually is, these could be signs that your system has a slow leak. Another sign of a leak would be if your vehicles engine suddenly overheats, sometimes there can even be a coolant smell if it is leaking. Finding out the type of leak your coolant system has is not that difficult, however, locating it can be more of a challenge. It would be wise for a person to take a look at the coolant reservoir tank every other time they put gasoline in their gas tank.

Antifreeze Leak Causes

Listed here are common causes for your coolant to be leaking:

1. Radiator cap leaks

If the radiator cap doesn’t no longer fits as it initially did or if it is weak and wore out it can cause loss of your systems coolant by way of the overflow tube, and it will happen every time you run the engine very long. The radiator was designed to be pressurized, so should the radiator cap fit incorrectly, improperly fitting, or maybe it is not the correct cap for your radiator, either way pressure will end up being lost and this let go very long could also create damage to a hose, causing even more repairs to be done. Having a pressure test performed on the radiator cap will help in diagnosing the problem.

Solution: Simply replace your radiator cap with one the fits correctly. You can find out in the vehicles manual what the proper cap is and what your pressure should be.

2. An internal leak

For starters, if it is an internal leak there will not be a pool of coolant under the vehicle, but rather, you will find yourself constantly having to put more water in the radiator as it quickly overheats and it either leaks out or evaporates. For internal coolant leaks you will need to look at the head (cylinder block), it could also be that you have a leaky head gasket, as this will let the coolant seep out.

Solution: Bring your vehicle to an auto repair shop for diagnosis unless you know how to disassemble your engine.

3. An external leak

The easiest to pin point what the problem is would be if it is an external leak. Usually, if you have a leak that is external, the vehicles coolant is going to escape rapidly allowing the vehicle to overheat quickly. You should be able to determine where the leak is just by observing. It may be a broken hose and/or a hole in the radiator.

Solution: Check your hoses to see if any coolant is coming out. Replace the hose(s) if you notice coolant coming out of them. If you notice coolant leaking out of your thermostat that can be an easy fix. It only costs about $10-$15 to replace a vehicles thermostat and is one of the easiest repairs you can do yourself. However, if the coolant is leaking from your water pump, that can get a little more expensive. Depending on your vehicle, you or an auto mechanic might need to buy a water pump replacement tool from the dealership to replace your water pump.

4. Blown Head Gasket

If you’re struggling to find the source of your coolant leak there’s a chance it is caused by a blown head gasket.  The head gasket seals the engine block and cylinder heads.  If a head gasket fails it may cause a serious coolant leak and overheating or may be a small leak that is hard to detect. Worse yet the coolant may try to mix with your engine oil.  If this happens you’ll likely lose all compression and make it so you cannot drive your car.

Solution:  The solution for a blown head gasket is to replace it immediately.  It will require some disassembly of your engine so the cost for labor will typically exceed the cost of the part.

Other Coolant Leak Causes

Other things that can also let the coolant escape are the:

  • Heater core
  • Leaks in water pump
  • Engine freeze plugs
  • Bad thermostat
  • Crack in coolant reservoir
  • Hole in your radiator
  • Bad coolant hoses

However, these can also be easily diagnosed with a visual inspection. It could also turn out to be that the coolant reservoir has a crack. The coolant is part of the vehicles main system, it is what helps in keeping the vehicles engine cooled down and will more than likely not be what makes the vehicle overheat, this may however be the reason that after the vehicle has sit a very long time you see a pool of coolant under the vehicle.

The Purpose Of Your Vehicle’s Cooling System

A vehicle cooling system is crucial to your vehicle functioning properly, and when there is a leak in the coolant of your car it is going to affect its efficiency, and in general, the way that it performs, and it will gradually begin overheating. The purpose of the vehicles coolant system is to keep the engine from overheating, and this is done by the cooling system circulating through the engine through pipes and a radiator. When the vehicle is running the coolant, temperatures will rise gradually letting the coolant expand and moving the excess into the reservoir through rubber hoses. Moreover, if the system begins working improperly it is important to have it fixed as soon as you, but if keep letting it go you could be facing some expensive repairs. Don’t worry too much though, coolant leaks are one of the most common engine problems and can be fixed.

5 Symptoms Of Coolant Leaks

There are some clear signs you can watch for to be ready to catch coolant leaks early and prevent damage to your vehicle.  These include when your heater won’t work, the temperature gauge is high or low, the coolant light is on, you smell something sweet, or you’ve lost some fuel economy.

1. The Heater Won’t Work

The heater in your car or truck is powered by the coolant that keeps your engine cool.  When your heater will not work it’s a sign that there either isn’t enough coolant in your car or there’s a blockage of some kind.  If you think the heater just isn’t putting out the heat like it should you should have your vehicle’s coolant and heating system inspected.

2. Temperature Gauge High or Low

When you’re vehicle’s temperature goes up or down from the normal level as you’re driving it can be a sign of coolant system problems. Problems can be something simple like low coolant level or something more serious such as a blocked radiator or a broken cooling fan.  It’s important to get this type of problem checked out promptly to avoid damage to you  vehicle.  As strong as metal is the components in your motor can easily get too hot and melt, crack, seize, or completely fail causing you costly repairs.

3. Your Coolant Light Is On

Most modern vehicles are equipped with warning lights for engine temperature.  They usually look like a temperature gauge with wavy lines.  It’s purpose is to let you know you should stop and check out why your engine is overheating.  You may have a cracked or broken hose that’s allowed large amounts of coolant to spill out.  Read about what to do if you’re car has overheated.

4. You Can Smell Something Sweet

Antifreeze smells sweet, so if you’re smelling something unusually sweet after you’ve had a temperature warning or you’ve got steam billowing out of your hood, it’s probably your coolant.  This is a good time to start checking for obvious leaks under your vehicle.  Avoid trying to remove the radiator cap until your vehicle is completely cooled down, this may take up to 45 min.

5. Diminished Fuel Economy

Engines are designed to work under very specific operating conditions.  They get their best performance and fuel mileage at specific temperatures.  If it’s too cold it won’t use the fuel correctly and will not get the fuel economy you’re supposed to get.  If you’ve noticed a deterioration in your fuel mileage bring your vehicle in to get checked out.

Can You Drive A Car With A Broken Radiator?

No, you should never drive a vehicle that’s leaking a significant amount of coolant or has a broken radiator.  If your vehicle’s cooling system is faulty it will overheat and cause serious damage to your engine.  Overheating engines can lead to cylinder heads to warp, your engine to seize, cylinder head gasket failure, or your engine block to crack.  These are all extremely expensive repairs and you should avoid driving your vehicle at all costs.  Get it towed into a trusted automotive repair shop and have it repaired.

How Much Does Coolant Leak Repair Cost?

The cost of getting a coolant leak repaired varies by the type of vehicle and what’s causing it to leak.  According to AutoServiceCosts.com an antifreeze leak repair cost should be between $90 and $115 dollars.  Depending on what’s wrong with your antifreeze coolant system the costs may be less or higher.  High performance or exotic vehicles will have higher coolant leak repair costs as replacement parts for these vehicles typically cost more.  For more information about how much your coolant leak inspection will cost along with a quote for repair please give Bridwell Automotive Center a call to schedule an appointment at (480) 948-4781.

Overheating Car Symptoms

Overheating Car Symptoms

If you’re searching for overheating car symptoms or what causes a car to overheat, this post will help you understand the signs of an overheating car and what to do.  Overheating engines are not something that people want to happen. If you can catch the problem quick enough, then you can save the headache from major engine repairs, and possibly needing to purchase a new car. Knowing the following information from this guide will help you to make the right choice when any of the symptoms happen.

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Contents In This Post:

Overheating Car Symptoms

Car Overheating What To Do?

Why Do Cars Overheat?

Schedule Overheating Car Repair

Overheating Car Symptoms

If you believe that your engine is overheating, don’t try to check the coolant level or open the cooling system because it will be under pressure and you can get burned with coolant. Let your engine cool down before you check for an issue.

1. The Temperature Light or Gauge

Each car will have a warning light or temperature gauge that will come on to tell you the temperature engine. If the warning light comes on, it’s saying that the engine is beyond the operating temperature. If the temperature gauge is over the red or near the top, then that is a sign that there is excessive heat on the engine. The only issue with these devices, is that they sometimes they don’t work right because of a coolant leak which causes the sensor to have nothing to read.

2. The Car Smells Hot

Because the engine is a giant piece of metal with small pieces of plastic, rubber gaskets and seals, and residual motor oil, whenever it is running hot these oils and materials will give off an odor that most people describe as smelling hot. This may happen even if your gauge is stating that is in the normal level and your warning light isn’t on. The odor can come through the AC vents because the engine is near the fresh air intake of your HVAC system.

3. Thumping Sounds

Whenever an engine is cold it won’t run efficiently. This is why engines are designed to have a thermostat that stays closed blocking the flow of coolant to the radiator until the engine is able to reach the operating temperature. The issue with this device is whenever it doesn’t open it can cause the coolant to get super-heated inside of the engine. This can cause a thumping noise from your engine whenever you have cold coolant trying to mix with the boiling coolant within your engine. This particular sound is pointing out that your thermostat should be replaced because of a failed sensor within the thermostat.

4. Your Engine has a ticking sound

Engine oil is used to lubricate and provide thin layers of protection between the moving parts. Whenever this oil gets super-heated, it will lose the ability to provide this layer as the oil weight is so thin that it is similar to water. Once this happens, the clearances in the engine will start to tick which indicates that the lubrication process has failed.

5. Coolant is on the ground

If there is coolant on the ground under your vehicle after you parked it, then it may be an indication of engine overheating. This could be because either the cooling system has a leak which causes the engine to run hot and overheat or the coolant has boiled inside of the cooling system and has been relieved by the coolant overflow tank.

6. Steam is coming from the hood

Whenever there is boiling coolant, in the coolant reservoir or being sent out of the radiator cap because of extreme temperatures it will cause steam to be produced from the sides, rear or front of the hood. This is because the coolant is way past the boiling point and is now becoming steam much like water. This is a big sign that the engine is overheating, and it needs to be shut off immediately before any damage happens.

7. Reduced Engine Power

Whenever an engine is overheating it may cause reduced power because of the pistons expanding within the cylinder bore which will slow down the crankshaft rotation. This will slow down, and it is because of the amount of power that the engine can produce. If you happen to notice that the vehicle is having a hard time keeping up with traffic, look at your temperature gauge or light and then notice if there are any weird smells which can be trying to tell you that there is a temperature problem in the engine.

8. Hot Hood

While the hood of your car is going to hotter than everything else, it shouldn’t be extremely hot to the touch. You should be able to place your hand on the hood for around 10 seconds in a worst-case scenario. If you aren’t able to touch the hood, then your engine is causing excessive heat and it will need to be checked out.

Car Overheating What To Do?

If your vehicle is overheating and smoke or steam is coming out of the hood the first thing you need to do is pull over.  Then you can start trying to address what’s causing it, if you can fix it, or if you’re going to need to get it towed to be repaired.  Serious damage can occur if your engine is overheating.  Follow these steps to handle and overheating engine if you car, truck, van or suv.

1. Stay Calm & Pull Over Safely

Whether you’re on the freeway, highway, or busy street stay calm and pull over if you’re overheating.  Pulling over quickly and shutting off the engine will allow it to start cooling.  Do this quickly to avoid serious damage to the engine or it’s components.   In the event you’re unable to pull over make sure you shut off the AC and cool by lowering your windows.  Turn the heater all the way up to full, doing this will help cool the engine.  Flip on your hazard lights and drive slowly and avoid stop and go traffic.

2. Check Under The Hood

If you’ve got clouds of steam or smoke billowing out of your hood, wait until it’s stopped.  If you feel the the hood is still very hot wait for it to cool down before opening it up.  You can shut the car off but leave the key in the on position.  This will allow the fans to continue to cool the engine.  While it will take some time you should wait the approximately 30 min before trying to touch the radiator cap or engine.  Avoid serious burns by being patient and running the fans with the engine off but keys in the on position.

3. Check If The System Is Pressurized

Check the radiator hose located in the upper side of your engine.  Use a rag, towel, or cloth to squeeze the radiator hose as it’s likely still very hot.  If it is stiff there’s likely still pressure in the system.  Do not remove the radiator cap until this pressure has subsided.  Where the radiator hose is located depends on the make and model of vehicle, but they are usually on the top side and called the upper radiator hose.

4. Wait To Remove The Radiator Cap

Safety can’t be overstressed and removing the radiator cap too early can cause serious burns.  Pressurized coolant can spray out and cause painful burns. The coolant of an overheated engine can easily exceed 250°F.  As long as it is inside the compressed coolant system it doesn’t boil.  As soon as the pressure is released and it’s exposed to air it can boil in a flash.

5. Remove The Radiator Cap

Once the engine has cooled and you’ve tested the radiator hose, use a rag to remove the radiator cap.  Some caps you need to push down after you’ve loosened it while others have threads and scew off counter clockwise. Doing this will expose your coolant to regular air pressure and if you’ve done it too soon it can flash boil and burn you.

6. Check Coolant Level

The radiator cap is attached to a white tank that holds your coolant.  Once the vehicle has had about 40 min to cool you can check the coolant level with the cap off.  There’s usually a level to show if you’ve got enough, too much, or not enough coolant.  This will be a good guide to knowing if it was a isolated event or if you’re low on coolant.

7. Look For Coolant Leaks

If you found that you are low on coolant the most common problem is leaking coolant.  You’ll have to look under the vehicle for puddles or drips of coolant.  Generally older vehicle always have green coolant.  Newer vehicles have been equipped with various colors of engine coolant, so check yours to see what color of coolant you should be looking for.  Engine coolant usually smells sweet and typically ends up under the car and on hoses.  It’s easy to tell the difference between condensation (doesn’t smell), engine coolant (smells sweet) and engine oil (is much thicker).

8. Refill Engine Coolant As Necessary

You’ve likely had a coolant leak and you’ll have to refill it before you can get back underway.  Wait for the vehicle to cool completely and then pour it in slowly into the radiator.   If you’ve got some water with you most vehicle are designed to run on diluted coolant.  You can dilute the engine coolant and have a 50% water and 50% coolant mixture.  Do it a little at a time to help the system accept it slowly. If you simply don’t have any coolant with you it’s possible to use straight water.  It’s not a permanent solution, but it does work.

9. Check Engine Condition

With new coolant in the engine you can test the engine.  Turn the it on and watch your temperature gauge carefully.  If it races back onto the hot side you’ll need to shut the car off again.  Wait another 20 min and give it another try.  If it continues to have problems or you’ve noticed a significant leak under the vehicle you’ll likely need a tow to a mechanic.  Otherwise you can schedule engine repair with your local repair shop.

10. Call For A Tow To A Repair Shop

If you just can’t seem to get the engine to cool call for a tow truck.  Don’t risk serious damage or further damage to your vehicle by driving while you’re overheating.  The cost to replace an engine is usually about 15% of the vehicles value.  So take care of your vehicle early, often, and considering preventative maintenance.

Why Do Cars Overheat?

There are a lot of factors that can cause your engine to overheat. One of the most common causes is that the coolant level is low. If this is low, then it will cause the heat that is inside of the engine to stay in while making steam as the temperature rises. The common cause for low coolant is that there is a leak in the engine or in the system. Mechanical failures like a thermostat sticking closed can block the flow of coolant in the radiator which causes the car to overheat. Additional failures could be a blown head gasket or  a cooling fan not coming on. If the engine is running while it is overheating it will cause the pistons to begin expanding and then seize inside of the cylinder bore while busting the cylinder heads and cracking the engine block.

Overheating Auto Repair Service

Overheating Auto Repair Service
If your car, truck, or suv has been showing any of these signs or has overheated Bridwell Automotive Center can help!  Our master ASE repair technicians work on all makes, models, and can repair your overheating car quickly and affordably.  Our radiator repair service and automotive repair shop is located in Scottsdale where we proudly care for any vehicle maintenance or repair need.

For help with overheating automotive problems call (480) 948-4781

Most Common Engine Problems

Most Common Engine Problems

If you are looking for the most common engine problems, this post should help! When your engine fails, it isn’t a good thing. Not only will your car be down, but it can be hard to diagnose and even harder to repair. Whether your engine is making weird noises, misfiring, or overheating, the cause could be one of many issues.

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Most Common Engine Problems

You shouldn’t think of the check engine light as a death omen for your car, but you should think of it as an indication that something on your car needs some attention. Your car diagnostician may find any of the issues below.

Missing or loose gas cap.

Replacing or tightening the gas cap is going to be the cheapest and easiest fix for your car in its lifetime. However, it is also important. A missing or loose gas cap can cause your gas to evaporate from your car, which decreases the gas mileage which could cost your hundreds of dollars.

Worn Spark Plug.

It may be small but its important. The spark plug is what makes your vehicle move forward. It has a function to ignite compressed gas within your engine. Worn spark plugs will make a weak spark which may prevent your engine from igniting or cause it to do so during the wrong stage. Misfiring will affect your engine and gas mileage and can cause a lot of damage.

Clogged radiator.

Dirty coolant may cause many issues. If your radiator gets filled with sediment from dirty coolant, then it can cause your engine to overheat. Your radiator can get corroded if you use hard water in it.

Coolant loss.

Normally coolant loss is the most common reason for overheating. If your engine is constantly overheating, then the high temperature could cause major damage that can’t be repaired. Prevention is the best treatment, so avoid this damage by ensuring that the coolant is clean, and that the cooling system is in good condition for operating.

Poor compression.

If fuel and air aren’t properly compressed, your engine can’t complete the combustion process. If the valves aren’t being sealed properly, the piston rings are worn, or the cylinder has a hole, there could be an air leak which causes lack of compression.

Faulty or broken oxygen sensor.

This sensor measures just how much oxygen hasn’t been burned in the exhaust. It will then tell the data system just how much gas is in the gas tank. A problem with an oxygen sensor means that your car gets incorrect information. This often causes lower gas mileage.

Spark knock.

This is a type of combustion that is caused by the build up of too much pressure and heat in the combustion chamber. Whenever this happens, you will hear a pinging or metallic knocking noise. A small amount of this won’t cause any major damage but the heavy knocks and prolonged detonation can cause some major damage to the engine. It can crush rod bearings, crack rings, punch holes in the pistons, pound out piston ring grooves, and even blow a head gasket. Prolonged knocking noises are a certainly something to be concerned with.

Dirty oil.

Oil can even build up can leave some nasty deposits on the spark plugs, combustion chambers and intake valves. It can be ruing the bearings by leaving debris which will embed on the surface. If the oil filter is missing or clogged, then this could be problem.

Oil pump failure.

A failing oil pump can cause oil starvation which will damage any engine. Overhead cam engines are at risk for this, because the valve train and cam are further from the pump than a pushrod engine. Oil needs to be the proper viscosity which means it needs to be light enough to move fast.

Poor lubrication.

Your car will need oil between moving parts. Not only does this reduce friction, it also removes heat. Having a regular oil change is important to the functioning of your car. Failing to make sure you have proper lubrication can cause your car to overheat and the parts to seize up, so keep your oil at the recommended level. Low levels could mean burning or a leak.

Bad air/fuel mixture.

The first and maybe most obvious thing is if you’re out of fuel.  If it’s on “E” then you’ll need to head on down to a gas station. There can be a problem with your vehicle’s air intake.  If the intake isn’t letting air into your engine, it cannot operate properly.  There can also be problems caused by water that’s got into your gas tank.  This will cause the fuel to not ignite.  Lastly your vehicle may be running “rich” (too much gas) or too “lean” (not enough gas) in the air/fuel mixture.

How To Tell If Car Engine Is Blown

We’ve all heard people talk about blowing an engine, but what does that mean?  It’s easiest to understand a blown engine as any type of damage or failure which requires an overhaul or replacement of the engine.  There’s a number of various components that once damaged constitute serious enough repair that most would agree it’s “blown”.

Cracked Engine Block

One of the most obvious signs that you’re engine is blown is when the engine block cracks.  The engine block is the larger housing that defines the internal combustion engine.  If it cracks the engine cannot contain the pressures of fuel exploding and pushing the pistons to produce power.

Signs to watch for include if your vehicle is overheating, if you have white smoke coming from the exhaust, and if you see coolant leaking from the side of the engine.

Pistons, Rings, & Cylinders

The pistons are what does the heavy lifting of producing the power to move your vehicle.  They go up and down within the cylinder walls and the rings close up the gap between the piston and the walls.  If any of this is damaged the engine will have serious failures and need to be repaired or replaced.

Symptoms to watch for with your pistons, rings, and cylinders are loud rattling sounds, blue smoke in exhaust, oil caps popping off, when your engine won’t idle smoothly, and if you fail an emissions test.

Rods, Bearings, & Pins

Other components in your engine that transfer the power from the pistons such as the rods, bearings and pins will cause a blown engine if they fail.

Things to watch for include tapping and ticking sounds, low oil pressure, pulsing, metal shavings in the engine oil, throwing a rod (extremely dangerous), and rattling when you accelerate.

How the Engine Works

Your check engine light can be an anxiety trigger for any driver. It could mean anything from a missing gas cap which is a cheap and easy fix to needing a major repair which can be expensive. The whole issue is that it can be made worse by the fact that most car owners don’t really have a great sense of how their engine works. What can be more confusing than a large jumbled mess of metal, tubes and wires?

Here is a breakdown. Your engine works from the inside of your car, which is why its call an internal combustion engine. Basically, the job of the engine is to convert the gas into energy, which makes your car go. In the newer hybrid and electric cars, the energy source is going to be different, but the outcome is still the same. The same goes for diesel engines. It is just a universal truth: Without a working engine, your car is going to be a heavy and useless pile of metal.

Having regular maintenance could seem to be pricy, but it is also important to do to keep your car in good working order. If you want to get the most out of your car, then ensure that you keep up with getting routine oil changes and other various maintenance and be sure to address other problems that occur as soon as they happen.

Certified Engine Repair in Scottsdale

If you are having any other above engine problems in Scottsdale, Bridwell Automotive Center can help! Bridwell Auto offers trustworthy auto repair in Scottsdale to help keep you out on the road safe as possible.  For more information about our ASE Certified automotive repairs please contact us.  You can ask about our services, schedule and appointment and get our trusted and professional inspection done so you know what you’re up against.  

Call (480) 948-4781 or Contact Us

How To Pass Emissions An Test

How To Pass An Emissions Test

To pass an emissions test the check engine light needs to be off, oil changed, good gas cap, use a fuel additive, and warm it up on highway.

If you’re searching for how to pass an emissions test in Scottsdale, Bridwell Automotive Center can help!

Our team understands the state and city’s requirements for emissions and how to help ensure your car, truck, or suv will pass emissions testing.ASE Certified automotive repair technicians can help you prepare for testing or can help repair issues if you have failed and emissions test.

Read more about reasons vehicles fail emissions tests and how much emissions repairs cost.

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How To Pass Emissions An Test

To give your vehicle the best chance at passing the emissions test follow these tips.  By doing a little preparation you can save yourself the headache of getting your vehicle retested.  If you’ve got more serious problems with your vehicle you will likely need to have professional automotive repair to get your vehicle to pass emissions.

Change Engine Oil

Old dirty oil in your engine can release extra pollutants which can cause you to fail your emissions test.  It’s a good practice to have your oil changed before an emissions test.

Check Gas Cap Seal

One of the most common reasons people fail an emissions test is the gas cap.  Gas cap seals are exposed to heat, cold, rain, snow and the seals break down.  If air is passing by your gas cap it can cause your vehicle to throw a check engine light and fail your vehicle in an emissions test.

Have A Tune Up

Having your vehicle tuned up about 2 weeks before you need to get the test is a great precaution also.  Your vehicle benefits from regular maintenance and it will increase the chances of passing you emissions test.  Filters will be changed and your vehicle will be running at peak performance.

Check Tire Pressures

In some states your vehicle will be ran on rollers to test emissions as if  you were moving.  This is called a dynomometer.  If your tires have low pressure it could cause your motor to release higher levels of pollutants at speed.

Add A Fuel Additive

Fuel additives help clean carbons deposits out of your vehicle’s exhaust and intake system. If you’ve got extra carbon deposits around fuel injectors, cylinders, or in the exhaust it can cause your vehicle to fail an emissions test.

Use The Vehicle

If it is a vehicle you don’t normally drive, but want to get the registration done, you will need to make sure you drive it regularly for 2 weeks leading up to your testing.  This helps clear out the exhaust system and catalytic converter from carbon and other harmful pollutants.

Drive On Highway 20 Min Before Testing

On the day of testing you’ll need to drive the vehicle on the highway for about 20 min to warm up the motor.  This makes it so when you arrive at the emissions testing center you’ll be ready to pass with flying colors.

Reasons To Fail Emissions Test

There are 6 main reasons vehicles fail emissions testing.  A check engine light is a red flag that will cause you to fail along with bad O2sensors, too rich fuel to air mixture, bad EVAP systems, leaky, or incorrect fuel metering.

Check Engine Light

The check engine light in your vehicle comes on for numerous reasons.  If it is on you should stop by our shop and let us read the code to figure out what is happening with your vehicle.  Sometimes it can be as simple as needing a new gas cap to something more serious that if ignored can result in costly repairs.

Bad 02 Sensors

Vehicles today rely on O2 sensors to monitor exhaust fumes.  When they are not working properly the vehicle will likely have a rough idle or decrease in engine power.  You will also lose mountains of MPG efficiency if your O2sensors are not working properly.  If your vehicle is burning too much fuel it will not pass emissions testing as the toxicity of the exhaust will be too high.

Rich Fuel to Air Mixture

When gasoline is injected into your engine it is mixed with a proportion of air.  This is called the “air to fuel mixture”.  How much fuel is used to in each cycle of the pistons affects your fuel mileage, power, an carbon monoxide content in your exhaust.  If you are burning too much fuel you will not pass emissions tests.

Bad EVAP System

Your Evaporative Emissions Control System, or EVAP, stops gas fumes from being released into the atmosphere by your vehicle.  When vacuum hoses are cracked, loose, or broken it will cause the check engine light to come on.  Even a loose or broken gas cap will cause the EVAP system to throw a check engine light and prevent you from passing your emissions test.

Leaky Exhaust

Exhaust leaks will wreak havoc on a vehicle’s ability to pass an emissions test.  If your exhaust system is leaking it will make the O2 sensor read incorrectly.  If the exhaust from your engine isn’t being passed through the catalytic converter it is being released into the atmosphere in categorically illegal levels.  If your exhaust system is leaking, we can repair it so you will pass the emissions test in Arizona.

Incorrect Fuel Metering

How much fuel your vehicle uses is also part of emissions testing.  If your vehicle uses too much fuel compared to it’s make and model you will likely not pass your emissions test.  The right amount of fuel is sent to the engine to make it run smoothly.  If a fuel injector or engine control unit is malfunctioning it will use too much fuel and make it hard to pass an emissions test.

How Much Does Emissions Repair Cost?

The cost to repair your vehicle so it will past emissions testing will depend on what is preventing it from passing.  If it is simply a gas cap, it will cost around $30. In contrasts it costs about $200 dollars to fix an O2 sensor in most of today’s vehicles.  If the catalytic converter needs to be replaced it will cost over $1,000 dollars.  You will save money the sooner you bring your vehicle in when the check engine light turns on.  Small issues like O2 sensors can lead to the bigger more expensive problems such as replacing your catalytic converter.

Scottsdale Emissions Repair Service

If you want to ensure you will pass on the first try for emissions testing, or if you have already failed and need help repairing your vehicle so it will pass; Bridwell Automotive Center is here to help!  From your daily driver Fords and Chevy’s all the way up to your McLaren or Ferrari our ASE Master Technicians are ready and waiting to help your pass emissions test in Scottsdale, AZ.

Schedule emissions repair or give us a call at (480) 948-4781

Common Mercedes Problems

Common Mercedes Problems

If you’re searching for Mercedes repair you’re likely suffering from one of the common Mercedes problems.  Bridwell Automotive Center is Scottsdale, Arizona’s premier Mercedes repair shop.  Our team of fully certified and trained repair technicians understand the common problems with Mercedes and know the right way to fix them, the first time.  Call today to schedule Mercedes repair in Scottsdale.  Schedule the repair of your Mercedes by calling (480) 948-4781.

Common Mercedes Problems

Despite being one of the finest made brands of vehicles Mercedes still have common problems.  Here’s a list of common issues and the likely culprits causing problems with your Mercedes.

Ignition Will Not Turn

If your Mercedes key slides into the ignition barrel but will not turn it is very frustrating, especially if you’re in a hurry.  Unfortunately, there’s no magic fix and if this happens you’re looking for a trustworthy tow company.  Many times, the problem causing this is a faulty EIS module.  Before it completely fails you will usually notice a few times where you notice the wear, get it looked at ASAP to avoid getting stuck and needing a tow.

Engine Cranks But Won’t Start

A lot of models of Mercedes end up with this problem.  Your engine will continue to crank but never actually starts the vehicle.  Many times, this is caused by the crank shaft position sensor.  Your engine management system looks for the indication of the TDC from the position sensor.

If it isn’t working correctly the signal isn’t received and the vehicle will not start.  One warning sign before it just won’t start is longer crank times.  So, if you’ve got a Mercedes that’s taking longer and longer to start you may consider some preventative maintenance.

Vehicle Will Not Shift Out of Park

A common problem with the S class and E series of Mercedes it can be a frustrating issue.  Your vehicle will fire up and run, but you will not be able to shift the vehicle out of park and into reverse or drive.  It is commonly caused by a faulty selector module.  Again, there are warning signs before complete failure. If you’ve experienced trouble shifting your Mercedes out of park, get it looked at before it fails.

Check Engine Light On & Running Rough

While a check engine light is caused by wide variety of problems a Mercedes that is running rough is a sign of misfires.  It could be a single cylinder or more than one that isn’t working properly and causing your misfires.  In Mercedes vehicles one of the most common causes of running rough is the mass air flow meter or “MAF”.

While the engine management system usually keeps your motor running smoothly a problem with the mass air flow meter could be feeding it bad information.  One sign of a bad MAF is a significant change in fuel consumption.

Rattling During Startup

Some models of Mercedes engines will have a rattle during the first 15 seconds after starting.  This is exacerbated by colder weather conditions.  In many cases the rattle is caused by a belt tensioner which is worn.  If it continues past the first 15 seconds, the culprit may be the water pump pulley.  See that these issues are resolved as they have the potential of leaving you road side looking for a tow.  You’ll either not have a belt or the vehicle will have overheated.

Fluid Leaks Under Center of Vehicle

Older Mercedes vehicles will frequently have transmission leaks that show up under the center of where the vehicle is parked.  If you find a red fluid in this area it is most likely a leak from the electrical transmission plug on the side of the transmission.  Another common source of transmission leaks is the transmission pan.  Generally, the leaks are gradual and may only be a few drops, but losing your transmission fluid will result in absolutely catastrophic damage.

Scottsdale Mercedes Repair

If you’re experiencing any of these common Mercedes problems or problems not listed in this post give Bridwell Automotive Center a call.  We will quickly identify the source of the problem with your Mercedes car or SUV and repair the problems quickly and affordably.  When you’re looking for Mercedes Repair in Scottsdale, trust Bridwell’s decades of experience and certified repair technicians.

Common BMW Problems

Common BMW Problems

While BMW’s are some of the finest vehicles around every manufacturer will have problems that are more common than others.  This post will talk about common BMW problems and solutions.  Some of these problems are common to just about every type of vehicle and others are more specific to the BMW brand.

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Top 5 Most Common BMW Problems

BMW’s don’t have a lot of problems, but when they do these are the top 5 most common problems.  The majority of these issues are usually inexpensive to have repaired and don’t take very long to do.  Depending on each of the issues and the reason there is a problem the cost of repairing these problems will vary as will the time needed to fix them.  Our team specializes in providing affordable repairs and quick turnaround to keep you moving.

Slow or Stuck Windows

The 3 Series of BMW is most prone to this problem.  Windows stop working many times because of a damaged or worn window regulator.  The window regulator is the system which uses electricity to power your windows to go up and down.  The most common problem is when the regulator clips break.

Wild Window Wipers & Electronics

Another common problem is window wipers with a mind of their own.  While automatic window wipers are great for sudden rain or snowstorms; window wipers that turn on by themselves can be distracting.  Other electronic systems such as the radio, indicators, heat seats and others are also possible problem areas.

Check Engine Lights

If your check engine light is on there is a good chance you need new injectors, ignition modules, or even a new clutch.  When BMW’s show a check engine light these are the most common reasons.  Most of these repairs are fairly reasonable in cost and won’t take terribly long to repair.

Remote Not Operating Locks

BMW remote key fobs not locking or unlocking the doors is another common problem.  This can be an issue with dead battery, broken fob, or the vehicle’s electronics needing adjustment.

Cracked Wheels

While any size wheel can crack the most common type that cracks on the BMW is the 19 inch alloys with run flat tires.  The alloy can crack if road hazards are hit at high speed such as potholes, curbs, or construction areas.  If this happens there is a chance of the alloy puncturing the tire.

BMW Reliability

BMW is frequently purchased due to its high reputation for quality and reliability.  According to Consumer Reports BMW ranks highly for reliability.  Reliability is a measure of how many repairs a vehicle will need within a timeframe. 80% of BMW’s score higher than the industry average in terms of reliability over the first 3 years of ownership.

While the BMW brand is higher than average across the board there are some models which have more problems than others.  Before purchasing a new or even used vehicle it is always advisable to research the particular model you’re interested in.  Some are built on tried and tested platforms and will be more reliable.  Other newer models such as iDrive will be new concepts that naturally will need some attention as the vehicle model develops and matures.

Choosing A BMW Repair Shop

If you’re searching for BMW repair in Scottsdale or Paradise Valley our team can help!  We specialize in the repair of BMWs and understand their systems and common problems intimately.  Having been in business for decades our experience is deep and our training up-to-date with all the newest models of BMW.