Damaged Engine

A large chain oil change company has damaged my 2005 Honda Civic engine irreparably and is trying to replace it with a used engine with comparable miles. The engine is being purchased through a company with a good reputation and they are adding a lifetime warranty on the engine as long as maintenance is performed. Is this a reasonable fix or should I demand a re-manufactured engine?

Why? Your original engine at the time of damage was a used engine with XX miles on it. Why do they owe you more?

This is just the kind of argument that will be presented in court if it goes that far. If you insist on a re-man engine, you may try to offer to pay the difference between the used and re-man. That way, you both are satisfied.

sounds reasonable. A used engine in good shape may be better then a rebuilt one. A rebuilt engine is only as good as the person rebuilding it.

Because a used engine has no maintenance history and it can’t be said whether it was cared for properly as I know my vehicle was so in that way it may or may not be a comparable trade.

A lifetime warranty on a used engine is a pretty good deal, and more or less nullifies the fact that its maintenance history is unknown. If all you need to worry about is having the maintenance done on it regularly, I’d say take it and run.

Let this also be a lesson to NEVER go to quickie oil change places. We hear far too many horror stories of wrecked engines, and it looks like this is yet another one to add to the collection.

Out of curiosity, how did they do it this time? Forget to put oil in, forget to install an oil filter, drained/added the wrong fluid, etc?

I’d want to read the warranty VERY CAREFULLY before I’d agree to this deal. If the used engine is OK you probably won’t have any problems, but if you have problems you will need a GOOD warranty.

another Honda engine will be pretty good.

if you are concerned, get it done, and if you don’t like it, sell it.

Fuel injection cleaning-they ran it with too much pressure. I know I shouldn’t have let them do it but I thought they were just adding the cleaner to my gas tank…

A used engine should be fine if they guarantee in writing they will stand behind it for life. Even that “for life” can be debateable sometimes though.

Just curious. How did they damage the engine with a fuel injection cleaning machine? What did they do; hydrolock it and knock out pistons, rods, bearings, etc.?

A used engine is fine if it has a lifetime warranty but make sure it’s in writing and “for life” is clearly defined. Sometimes the “for life” part can be debateable.

Just curious here. How did they ruin the engine with a cleaning machine; hydrolock it and knock out pistons,rods, bearings, etc.?

If this is the case are they even sure the engine is damaged? It’s quite possible to have a hydrolocked engine that has suffered no damage. Simply remove the spark plugs, let it dry out, and motor on.

(Hydrolock occurs when incoming fluids enter the combustions chambers faster than they can be discharged. Even one cylinder will seize an engine up solid.)

Piston hit the injector and bent, damaged the wall, piston arm

Would it be wise to have a reputable company rebuild my original engine as another option?

As stated above, a rebuild is only as good as the person that does the work. They’re offering (what sounds like) a pretty good warranty on a used engine, which is what your car already had in it. You’ll also get back on the road quite a bit faster with the used engine vs. a rebuild.

My suggestion is the used engine, but it’s your car and your call.

If the cylinder wall is damaged it may not be possible to grind out the gouges. That may be why the used engine was recommended. You could ask them for a detailed list of reasons for the used engine if you haven’t already. With a guarantee in writing, the used engine is a good bet as long as it’s identical to the one you had.

My understanding about current gasoline fuel injection technique is that the injector sprays its charge at the base of the intake valve.Does Honda position its injectors so they spray into the combustion chamber? I am trying to figure how the piston and injector came together.Maybe just the tip of the injector came off (somehow)and got swallowed into the chamber.When I did fuel injection cleaning for these chains we disabled the fuel pump and the car ran on the pressure from a can of injector cleaner,there was never a chance to “overpressurize” a system.

Also my car only had 30,000 miles on it, another reason I am displeased with a “comparably used” engine as that seems to allow for a range of 0-60,000.