I need a second opinion on if a '96 nissan pathfinder 3.3 engine is the same as a '97 3.3 engine?

I have a 1996 pathfinder 3.3l LE with worn rockers and rocker rods(?) New parts come close enough to the cost of a used engine so I’m trying junkyards to see what I can find. But, there are no '96 engines close enough that aren’t past the 200k mile mark! So I called a salvage yard close to me that had a '97 3.3 and they said that the engines are different and won’t work. I had tried researching this out and asked around on different forums including in my old post and I thought they were the same or at least there were only minor changes. But now I guess I need to double check. Right now I need to get it back on the road quickly, so I’m hoping to just swap out the parts and store the engine for a later transplant.

If the salvage yard says it won’t work, I’d believe them. If you don’t, call another to double check.

Rock auto has new rocker arm shafts for 30. Arms are 17? Why use old junk

I have been on some other Nissan forums and am finding out that 96 - 99 1/2 will interchange. I’m gonna go this route and have a spare engine if I need one. I had already checked out rock auto and I need 12 of those rocker arms and they only have the intake rocker shafts (30 x 2) next cheapest is napa with them being 50ish (x 2 again) each for the exhaust. this used engine is only $150 more so I get more than $150 in spare parts.

Thanks anyway! :slight_smile:

Yep, spare motors are good. But, thats a lot to buy for rocker arms. Why are yours worn? You change oil and take care of motor. They should be in good shape.

Yeah I know :slight_smile: the radiator had blown while it was idling (I had only intended to let it idle for 10 min to charge the battery, not 2hrs). I think the radiator had gotten damaged when the fan had failed and blades flew all over the place, this happened when the previous own had it, so I must have missed that weak spot when I replaced the fan and was checking things out. Ah yes, the joys of a used vehicle.
Anyway, the top end lost oil, but the bottom has checked out solid, no play or noises when I turned it back and forth by hand, and everything but the rockers and rocker arms are nice and tight up top. No wear on the cam lobes at all. I am feeling very blessed that I won’t have to do an engine transplant right away!

It has 173,000 miles on it, I wouldn’t complain about the car and just get rid of it if I wasn’t seeing alot of these pathy’s with 250k+ on them!

@SeekingOne it’s actually going to be easier to replace the rocker arms and rocker shafts than replacing the whole engine.

And you probably have no idea what condition the used engine is in. Yeah, sure, the junkyard might tell you the engine was running great, but how do you know that’s true?

Turning an engine back and forth by hand is not going to tell you anything about the lower end’s condtion other than that it’s not seized up.

I’m having an impossible time seeing an oil starved, damaged top end with no bottom end damage.