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Old 04-30-2011, 07:30 AM   #1
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2.5 to 4.8 swap

Ok I am looking at swapping out the 2.5 in my 1997 tj. I could explain why but its long torturous road.

I have been looking for a donor jeep with a 4.0 but in the back of my mind was this voice that said "if I was going to all that trouble why not bump up the power, and there are more parts available for the 5.3 locally "

I have found a 2005 5.3 Z71 auto I can get all the parts I need for $1,500.00.

The question is will the transfer case work out ok.?
(Using it will save a $500.00 adapter and my 231 is in need of rebuilding.)

I know the drive shafts will have to be redone.

Ideas? or tips from someone that has done this conversion?
I have to tell the salvage guy somthing by monday


Thanks
Lowell

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Old 04-30-2011, 07:42 AM   #2
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the transfer case will be the only thing that will work with a V8. you'll be swapping axles and tranny. good luck.

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Old 04-30-2011, 07:48 AM   #3
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Keep us posted with lots of pics!!!!!!!
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Old 04-30-2011, 10:24 AM   #4
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Its gonna be a lot of work and a lot of money for that extra 50hp. The only REAL difference I've noticed between the 2.5 and the 4.0 is when it comes to towing. I can't speak for the 5.3, but it seems a little excessive unless you plan on entering competitions. That being said, if you have the time and money, go for it! Sounds like a fun project!
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Old 04-30-2011, 10:39 AM   #5
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I went back and forth between the gm, ford and dodge engines when I did mine. The magnum v8 is half the price to swap in and also half the work. The tq numbers are about the same as the 5.3 as well. The 5.9 puts out 245 hp and 335 tq. The factory gages all work right with the magnum and you don't have to worry about how to hook up the drive by wire and electronic gas pedal. All you will need to reuse your 231 is a new input shaft if you have a stick auto is already 23 spline! The factory auto shifter works fine with the 44re or 46re auto unlike the other makes.
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Old 04-30-2011, 02:30 PM   #6
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what year is your jeep? will you have to go through inspection where you live?
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Old 04-30-2011, 03:13 PM   #7
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what year is your jeep? will you have to go through inspection where you live?
Looks like he has a 97! And the profile said Tennessee, so I'm guessing no on the smog check.
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Old 04-30-2011, 04:51 PM   #8
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Yes TN and 97
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Old 04-30-2011, 05:04 PM   #9
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I went back and forth between the gm, ford and dodge engines when I did mine. The magnum v8 is half the price to swap in and also half the work. The tq numbers are about the same as the 5.3 as well. The 5.9 puts out 245 hp and 335 tq. The factory gages all work right with the magnum and you don't have to worry about how to hook up the drive by wire and electronic gas pedal. All you will need to reuse your 231 is a new input shaft if you have a stick auto is already 23 spline! The factory auto shifter works fine with the 44re or 46re auto unlike the other makes.
Mine is a 5 speed. I didnt think about the throttle. So I should get that assembly also ?.

I agree about the magnum but this is just the best deal I have found sofar. I asked about a magnum and I was getting prices double or more of the 5.3

Here is some info I found. Im not sure how accurate it is.
Jeep 4.0 265 hp and 290 lb.-ft of torque,

1999-2007 5.3 are rated at 285-295 hp and 325-335 ft·lb torque. ...
2005-2007 extended cab 4WD pickup trucks which have 310 hp
The donor is the 4wd z71 extended cab
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Old 04-30-2011, 08:27 PM   #10
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The 4.0 only makes 190 hp
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Old 04-30-2011, 09:07 PM   #11
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The 4.0 only makes 190 hp
I thought that was little much.

If I go with the whole z71 chunk that will mean drive shafts.

Take the z71 and the tj drive shafts and have the mach shop clone them together? Or ?
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Old 04-30-2011, 10:02 PM   #12
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You will need the pcm flashed to remove vats. You will need new gages which will run you about another four hundred bucks.
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Old 05-01-2011, 07:09 AM   #13
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I think you would be better off checking cl or another yard for a 5.9 magnum. I got mine at you wrench it for $100.00 and it runs like a champ!
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Old 05-01-2011, 08:43 AM   #14
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You will need the pcm flashed to remove vats. You will need new gages which will run you about another four hundred bucks.

How about keeping both ecus and letting the 2.5 ecu run the display. Maybe not the tach but the rest seems possible.
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Old 05-01-2011, 08:45 AM   #15
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I think you would be better off checking cl or another yard for a 5.9 magnum. I got mine at you wrench it for $100.00 and it runs like a champ!

I will check, what year did you use and what was it out of?
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Old 05-01-2011, 09:12 AM   #16
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98 ram. You can find them in ram trucks, vans, dakotas,durangos and grand cherokees.
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:20 PM   #17
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Update I found a 5.7 Hemi with low miles and low $. I found the trans out of a grand cherokee that had a 5.7. Will the trans (803185) bolt up to the 231 transfer?
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:34 PM   #18
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The best swap in my opinion is a 5.2L 318. You'll save yourself a lot of trouble in the end.
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:34 PM   #19
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Yes it will bolt up, but you will need a 23 spline input shaft if you don't already have an automatic in your jeep. Also the hemi is drive by wire , so you need the pedal assembly and the pcm uses a different bus , so the gages won't read right either without doing some work. like a dash and harness out of an 03 or newer tj, or you may be able to have hotwires reflash it for you to work with your display.
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:38 PM   #20
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Quote:
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Yes it will bolt up, but you will need a 23 spline input shaft if you don't already have an automatic in your jeep. Also the hemi is drive by wire so you need the pedal assembly and the pcm uses a different bus so the gages won't read right either without doing some work. like a dash and harness out of an 03 or newer tj, or you may be able to have hotwires reflash it for you to work with your display.
Ok, I have read that the exhast manafolds need to be swaped out for more clearance. True?

On the spline change, cost?

Thanks
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:40 PM   #21
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The best swap in my opinion is a 5.2L 318. You'll save yourself a lot of trouble in the end.
Thanks but the 5.7 just kinda found me.
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:42 PM   #22
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Yes it will bolt up, but you will need a 23 spline input shaft if you don't already have an automatic in your jeep. Also the hemi is drive by wire , so you need the pedal assembly and the pcm uses a different bus , so the gages won't read right either without doing some work. like a dash and harness out of an 03 or newer tj, or you may be able to have hotwires reflash it for you to work with your display.
Hmmm hotwires ?
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Old 08-13-2011, 08:32 AM   #23
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v8 on the way for Katrina

After alot of research and ebay searching I have a v8 purchased. I am to go get it monday. I was going to wait till I got it home to post but I couldn't. lol Its a 4.8 chevy out of a pkup with 12k miles. I have talked to Advanced A about converting the trans to fit the 231 and I have a quote from a local trans shop to swap the tail shaft. Yea I know thread says 5.3 but it came down to condition, price, and distance. I could have purchased a 5.3 with the same money but it was a 2006 with 78k. One of my goals is as high mpg, and im told the 4.8 would be a little better on gas. Its rated at 295hp and the 5.3 at 315. IDK but another source saaid the 4.8 may have a little more room at the sides.

I looking forward to the build but that means Im going to miss afternoon rides in the Katrina Jeep .

Because of this jeeps past my buds named it Katrina. It seems in its past it had spent alot of time underwater . LOl



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Old 08-13-2011, 08:54 AM   #24
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I don't want to bring you down, but the 4.8 is exactly the same externally as the 5.3 (and 5.7, and 6.0, and 6.2... all 98-current GM V-8s), so no more room. It will be a huge upgrade in power for you!

When I picked up my 97, an LS engine swap was my plan. I since went to an 03 Rubicon. The V-8 swap is still constantly on my mind.
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Old 08-13-2011, 09:06 AM   #25
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I don't want to bring you down, but the 4.8 is exactly the same externally as the 5.3 (and 5.7, and 6.0, and 6.2... all 98-current GM V-8s), so no more room. It will be a huge upgrade in power for you!

When I picked up my 97, an LS engine swap was my plan. I since went to an 03 Rubicon. The V-8 swap is still constantly on my mind.
Yea I kinda thought that too as , dont they use the same heads?

Im thinking maybe what my source meant was the exhast manifolds IDK. Im prob going to use headers anyway. I have read on here that the rear dumps will not work. IDk but we will try stock first.
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Old 08-14-2011, 09:03 AM   #26
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Yea I kinda thought that too as , dont they use the same heads?

Im thinking maybe what my source meant was the exhast manifolds IDK. Im prob going to use headers anyway. I have read on here that the rear dumps will not work. IDk but we will try stock first.
I have a feeling your source was mistaken. The exhaust manifolds are also the same. The only difference is the crank shaft and pistons (from a 5.3). In some of the builds I have read, the truck manifolds do not fit. Sorry to bring more bad news.

I hope it is ok to reference other forums on here. You should check out LS1tech. It has a ton of LS info. And even a couple LS swapped TJ threads.
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Old 08-14-2011, 10:43 AM   #27
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Keep us posted on the swap! Grats on the new motor.
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Old 08-15-2011, 07:04 PM   #28
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I have a feeling your source was mistaken. The exhaust manifolds are also the same. The only difference is the crank shaft and pistons (from a 5.3). In some of the builds I have read, the truck manifolds do not fit. Sorry to bring more bad news.

I hope it is ok to reference other forums on here. You should check out LS1tech. It has a ton of LS info. And even a couple LS swapped TJ threads.
Thanks for the info, I got the engine home today. It looks in great shape.



What do you guys think about storage while Im getting parts together?

Like should I turn it over by hand from time to time?
Or remove injectors to soak
Or anything else?

Could be 3 to 6 months before fire up (or more)

Thanks
Lowell
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Old 08-15-2011, 07:05 PM   #29
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Keep us posted on the swap! Grats on the new motor.
Thanks, its going to be alot of work. But hey it will keep me out of trouble.LOL
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Old 08-15-2011, 10:08 PM   #30
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Lowell,

3 to 6 months is nothing to sit without turning over if inside a garage. Not much if any fuel will be sitting in those small fuel rails and that short line, not like the carb days of the past. That 4.8 is very popular in express cargo vans and half ton Chevy WTs so with the jeep going 1500 lbs less your TJ will fly. Let me know if you need any help I've done sb swaps in many different cars - even a 1966 Sunbeam Alpine!

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