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Old 05-21-2012, 11:42 AM   #1
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step by step 2.5L engine swap tutorial?

I apparently have a noisy wrist pin in my 2000 Wrangler TJ 2.5L engine (agreed upon by 3 separate people) and I intend to replace the motor before it "grenades" so I don't have to pay the core charge. The rub is that my knowledge level is about two steps above changing the oil when it comes to car mechanics. I'm okay with a wrench, I've just never swapped a motor.

My hope is that there is some sort of a step by step guide to replacing the 2.5L engine with another re-manufactured 2.5L engine. I've downloaded the factory service manual and it seems straight forward, but things like aligning the drive shaft, will it need timing and adjustments, how to remove the fan belt are a mystery to me at this point, simple things that someone who has done it before takes for granted.

I'm not interested in upgrading to a 4.0 or some other option, I just want to keep my costs down and not break too many things along the way. I know it's probably not too tough, it's just that when I'm done, I don't want to be thinking "well, now I know how I should have done it".

Thanks, /2

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Old 05-21-2012, 12:17 PM   #2
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Simple. Took me about n hour to.get old.one out and new in. Start with removing fan shroud and radiator. Unplug all wires and mark what wire goes to what injector. The rest of them only plug in the correct spot. Unbolt trans and starter. Support trans with something. Remove whole engine mounts(makes it easier to line up when re installing.) If its a 5 speed u will have to align clutch and stuff on new motor. It's pretty strait fwd. Done it a few times.

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Old 05-21-2012, 12:30 PM   #3
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Thanks, it sounds easy, but when you say align clutch and stuff on new motor I don't know what's involved. Special tools, physic powers? The last motor I had open was 1968 BMW motorcycle and that was just to adjust the lifters.

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Simple. Took me about n hour to.get old.one out and new in. Start with removing fan shroud and radiator. Unplug all wires and mark what wire goes to what injector. The rest of them only plug in the correct spot. Unbolt trans and starter. Support trans with something. Remove whole engine mounts(makes it easier to line up when re installing.) If its a 5 speed u will have to align clutch and stuff on new motor. It's pretty strait fwd. Done it a few times.
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Old 05-21-2012, 12:42 PM   #4
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If u buys new clutch it should come with an alignment.tool.
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Old 05-21-2012, 06:35 PM   #5
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Also makes it easier to just remove power steering pump n leave lines hooked up
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Old 09-03-2013, 07:56 PM   #6
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Doing this swap right now (2.5 for a reman 2.5 - piston skirt cracked off on #2) and joined to share my notes. If mods would rather a new thread I can, but figured it's good to keep the info together.

things that weren't intuitive:

- brackets on each side bolt between the engine mount and the block (confused the hell out of me 'cause my FIL took them off so I didn't realize 'till I put it back together) - one provides thread holes for two of the timing cover bolts, one provides the power-steering mount and ties into the water pump.
- fuel rail, wire harness, steering pump, all of it can stay in. Radiator might as well come out.
- we got hung up on the bellhousing shield, it has one bolt we missed low on the driver side, otherwise everything slid out easy. left the trans and t-case alone (manual) except for a jack under trans for support.
- 2nd bolt from top on the passenger side of the bellhousing was a pain to get going. cheap 50lb/ft air ratchet didn't move it. got it out with an open wrench, a pipe, and a hammer.

Effort:
Maybe half-way done and I'm at 12hrs over three days, probably half that time solo, and I'm a rank amateur. I'm sure it could be a same-day job for a better mechanic than me, and a two-day weekend job if I ever had to do it again myself. Four hands required for the pulling (and placing I'm sure.)

- most accessories are on the re-man now. swinging it back off the engine stand in the morning so I can bolt the clutch on, then we'll slide it back in tomorrow night.
- still waiting on a harmonic balancer and timing cover (I destroyed both by trying to take them off in the wrong order) ... also replaced water pump, clutch, oil pump (it came with the reman), alternator (old was frozen after sitting for a winter) and it will need a new battery too. Probably $400 in that stuff, plus the $1800 for the warrantied motor and a $350 core charge.
- the $80 engine leveler from O'Riley was worth the price, imho. We've got a few more engine swaps in our future so we'll get use out of it... (FIL's Dodge, my Scout II)
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Old 09-04-2013, 04:26 PM   #7
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Another easy day at it today. Probably four hours of work, a couple hours of wandering around looking for stuff...

- pins that the intake rest on are hard to find and impossible to pull with hand tools. I ended up using roll pins and pounding them in with a brass hammer (careful to not hit the mating surface.) hopefully these will suffice
- bought new grade8 hardware for mounts and manifolds, it's just easier than re-using rusty old bolts and studs. all new stuff is bolts, i don't *think* there's anyplace that HAS to have a stud. will make gaskets tricky though.
- dumb move of the day - tried to swing motor into place using the rear-most stud sticking out of the head. with a leveler this made the chain interfere with the hood - had to re-chain it to a bolt in a manifold tap - while in the air! and it slid in easy after that.
- was a one-man-show today, so i manhandled the engine while bouncing my fat ass on the grille (standing on the axle) to get it to line up. not the most elegant way to do things, but it was effective.

Now the engine is sitting on its mounts, one bellhousing bolt is loosly in place, taking a break. Will have a hard stop tomorrow while waiting for balancer and timing cover. should get most everything plugged back together tomorrow (except for radiator, fan and shroud, and plastic intake parts) and get the rented hoist back.
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Old 09-22-2013, 06:15 PM   #8
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Very detailed and helpful I have my old 2.5l all stripped down ready to pull out. Gotta rent a hoist and get after it
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Old 09-22-2013, 06:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uncre8tv View Post
all new stuff is bolts, i don't *think* there's anyplace that HAS to have a stud. will make gaskets tricky though. .
When you find yourself in that situation, get a couple longer bolts of the same diameter and cut the heads off. Put them in finger tight to use as alignment posts or to trap gaskets while you get normal bolts in a couple other holes. Then back them out last and replace with normal bolts. I spent hours trying to line up my 4.0L oil pan/gasket/block combo using just bolts the first time. Took 10 minutes the second time using temporary posts in some of the holes.

The $#^#@$! exhaust flange fasteners on the other hand...
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Old 10-31-2013, 01:15 PM   #10
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Back at it. Had to move houses before we finished. Just starting the final push. Got the new-to-me harmonic balancer on, still need to finish the bellhousing bolts (all are hand tight but need torqued) and bellhousing shield. Don't understand why the bellhousing shield has two giant and two small bolts holding it on (other motors I guess?) and my PS pump started leaking during the break but I'm going to bolt it back in for now and replace later if needed.
Otherwise all that's left is alternator, radiator, and plumbing. Should have it running tomorrow (knocking on wood and crossing fingers.)
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Old 10-31-2013, 01:39 PM   #11
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That's good news hope all goes as you plan.
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Old 11-09-2013, 02:56 PM   #12
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Had a few minor frustrations as I fired it up. Thread here:

http://www.wranglerforum.com/f5/roug...or-369866.html

short version:
Front exhaust stud hole IS into the water jacket - seal it up!
Follow the FSM procedure to get your timing right (outlined in one of my posts in the other thread.)
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Old 11-09-2013, 03:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tj v. xj View Post
Simple. Took me about n hour to.get old.one out and new in. Start with removing fan shroud and radiator. Unplug all wires and mark what wire goes to what injector. The rest of them only plug in the correct spot. Unbolt trans and starter. Support trans with something. Remove whole engine mounts(makes it easier to line up when re installing.) If its a 5 speed u will have to align clutch and stuff on new motor. It's pretty strait fwd. Done it a few times.
An hour to swap engines??? Getting my boots on. Lol

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