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Bob
Bob, Auto Service Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 4087
Experience:  40 year GM Tech. +30 Certified. ASE Master Tech.(expired, retired) Medium Duty, Heavy Line, Retired
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1995 Saturn: SC2..the 1.9L DOHC engine - Vin 1G8ZH1278SZ181504

Customer Question

My daughter has a 1995 Saturn SC2 with the 1.9L DOHC engine - Vin 1G8ZH1278SZ181504. Her first engine she ran out of oil and siezed. Her second engine she purchased from a junkyard and threw a rod out the side of the block. I would be more excited to replace her engine with a new crate engine -- like an ecotec 2.0 or 2.2. I know that at the least I will need to replace the ECM -- but as far as mechanically, will one of these engines bolt up to her existing transmission/axel?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Car
Expert:  Bob replied 5 years ago.
Sorry, you will need to stay with a 95 or older motor. In 1996 they made all of the big changes and went to the OBDII system, so nothing 96 or newer is going to work. It is not just the control module and wiring, it is also all of the sensors and everything that goes with them and the PCM. Emission systems and everything else are different on the newer motor and won't connect to the early system. Sorry, save yourself some time and a lot of head aches and stay with the correct year. Most wrecking yards have a cross over manual, that I can't afford to buy, that has a complete list of what will interchange with your 95 and what will not. But your going to need to stay with one that has the original OBD1 system on it. Thanks
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

So do you think that this engine is worth rebuilding? I hate to try another wrecking yard engine as it's hard to tell what you've got until you disassemble the whole thing -- and if I'm going to do that, I might as well rebuild one of the blocks that I already have.

So, do you know much about this engine -- is it worth rebuilding, or maybe finding a low mileage take-out someplace?

Or maybe you are saying to go to the wrecking yard and see if they will tell me if there are any other OBD-1 engines that will fit?

Expert:  Bob replied 5 years ago.
My first choice would be to have a wrecking yard cross reference any other good motors that will fit the OBD1 system. Then you have a wider selection of motors to look for. Then if you can get lucky and find a good low mileage motor, you can save money over the price of rebuilding yours. But you are also right in that if you buy one with a lot of miles on it, you could end up right back where you started and have to rebuild it. I also tend to agree with you that this is not the strongest of motors going in. And I would have some concerns about sleeving one cylinder. If you do go that way, I am afraid you may invest more than it is worth, but that is a decision only you can make. It may pay you to shop for a rebuilt long block and then use the rest of the existing parts from the motor you have now. That way you know it's all new and fresh and the only other concern would be if you wanted to do the valves and use the existing cylinder head or not. So, in short, if it were me, I would check for cross reference to any other motors first and then go with a rebuilt short block second. Hope that helps you. Thanks
Bob, Auto Service Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 4087
Experience: 40 year GM Tech. +30 Certified. ASE Master Tech.(expired, retired) Medium Duty, Heavy Line, Retired
Bob and 15 other Car Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Just wanted to let you know that I rebuilt that Saturn engine almost two years ago. I guess I got lucky and the machine shop found that one of my blocks was 'straight' (not warped, which I guess is a common problem with the Saturn aluminum block engine). I had a lot of fun doing it and really enjoyed the experience. Wound of costing me about $1,300 in parts and machine work (amazing to me how much more the parts cost than a SBC - about the same to rebuild the 4 cylinder Saturn as an 8 cylinder Chevy!) - probably just as much as the car is worth total - but I had fun and I don't have to wonder about the condition of the engine anymore like I would have if I purchased a used engine. Anyway, thank you for getting me headed in the right direction to start with -- that would have been an extreme hassle trying to put an Ecotec in this car...next to impossible! :-)

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