Rebuilding engine

I have a friend that is looking to purchase a 2001 lincoln ls that seems to be hydrolocked. He doesn’t know much about cars and has been searching all over to try to find information about rebuilding an engine. I was wondering if you knew where to find such info and also if you had any general advice about going about the whole rebuild.

thanks a lot

Cars that have been in water are not very good investments. I would walk away from this swimmer. It will be nothing but trouble.

When I read this, RED flags went up all over.

You have a friend who doesn’t know much about cars, is buying a used car with a hydrolocked engine, wants to rebuild it, and your question sounds like he’s asking where to start!

The questions that come to my mind include:

  • Why do this? If it’s to learn about mechanics/cars/engines, that’s great! If it’s to save money, he’d better go back and do the math.
  • If the engine is hydrolocked, does that mean it was submerged in water? If so, he’ll have lots more problems than his engine.
  • Does he have tools? It takes lots more than a $99 Craftsman set to rebuild an engine.
  • If he is a novice, does he expect his first rebuild to go smoothly? There are lots of “pot holes” that experienced mechanics know how to navigate when doing an engine rebuild.

The regulars on this forum have lots of engine rebuild experience but can only help you if you provide more context.

A 2001 Lincoln, even with a perfect engine, is not the best car for the dollar anyway. I’ve known of a couple of them that had all sorts of strange electrical issues, and they’d never been wet. Run from this deal.

There’s a lot involved with engine rebuilding that one will not find in a manual and since your friend is not mechanically inclined he should pass on this venture.
It will be very easy to sink a small fortune into an engine and have it destroyed within 30 seconds after startup - if it even started.

An '01 Lincoln could be a candidate for a used engine swap though. Engines can be found all over the place for these cars.

You don’t “re-build” cars like this. You scrap them.

Hold on, scrap a 2001? It might have water from driving too fast through relatively shallow water. What model Lincoln? Many knowledgeable people say that finding a salvaged motor is a better move than rebuilding a 4.6 l modular motor. The same may go for other engines. Check around. If the Lincoln is low mileage, a motor swap could be a very good move.

Does a 2001 have a 302 or a 4.6?? 2002 is the first year for the “Panther” platform.

I wouldn’t trust a mechanic to rebuild an engine let alone someone who knows nothing about cars. The only rebuild I would use would be one that was done at a factory or rebuilder. (No offense to any mechanics but there is so much that needs to be checked and done a particular way, you really need to pay attention to details and have all the right tools.) I agree with the others that this is a very unwise thing to consider.

I disagree with the premise that a mechanic should not be trusted to rebuild an engine.
Speaking for a number of mechanics I know and myself, we can rebuild an engine to meet or exceed any factory specs. We also understand exactly what to inspect, what is or is not good, and understand things like bearing crush and whatnot.

An engine reman facility is one area that may or may not be any good as these places are often assembly line people who often don’t care and things are thrown together to meet “close enough specs”, which means it will definitely last long enough to exceed the warranty period; at least in most cases.

One of the largest reman facilities in the country (now defunct) used to advertise in the local paper for engine builders quote; “Engine builders needed, no experience necessary. Will train. 6.50 an hour to start”. That inspires confidence.

This is stupid. It’s like the guy who wants to START mountain climbing and decides to investigate about climbing Mt Everest. If he doesn’t have much car knowledge you don’t want to START with rebuilding a car. It’s NOT straight forward. I know the TV shows make it look so easy, but there’s a LOT involved. And if he runs into a little snag (which I GUARANTEE YOU HE WILL) he won’t have the mechanical experience to draw from. This is NOT a good idea. He WILL FAIL.

Oops. I knew it would be misunderstood. Certainly didn’t mean to imply that you (ok4450) couldn’t do a superior job and that there are other superior mechanics that could. Also there are rebuilders that do a lousy job. Its just hard to find one that is superior, may not be cost effective when all is said and done compared to a GM rebuild for example, and you may not find out the guy was not very good until its all done and the bill paid. I have just been very cautious about letting someone open up an engine instead of replacing it, and have been burned a time or two.

"I know the TV shows make it look so easy, "

I’d like to go back to those ‘restored’ cars in 10 years and see how they do. Hard to imagine that one weeks enought time to do it right.

The shows that do it in a week (Overhauling) is a joke.

However there are a few shows in Spike TV that rebuild cars/engines/trucks over a few weeks. Those are good shows…but it obviously puts a few people into a false sense of security thinking it looks so easy anyone can do it.

Caddyman, you are thinking '92. That was about the year for the first 4.6 L Crown Vics and Grand Marquis. I think that Lincoln and Mustangs got them earlier.

We still don’t know if this is a Town Car or some other Lincoln. MrBG12 is gone, gone, gone.

I do agree with you on your points because it is very easy for a mechanic to get in a hurry and screw something up or overlook something that may not cause any problems until 6 months or even several years later; leaving the car owner in the lurch and any warranty long since expired.
The guys I’ve worked with have been, for the most part, pretty competent but there has been a number I wouldn’t even trust to do a timing belt.

Cost effectiveness is a big deal because a general shop or dealer cannot compete with a reman shop on labor rates per hour. Many flat rate manuals allow 20-30 hours for an engine rebuild (excluding machine shop sublet services) and when 30 hours is multiplied X say 70 an hour it gets pricy. They’re able to do that assembly line stuff much, much cheaper and faster.

I agree with the other posters about television automobile repair or custom car shows. In regards to the Overhaulin’ show what I have heard is that they’re able to do the car in a week because they have a large number of people involved that are not on camera. It numbers about 55 people altogether I think.
That defunct American Hot Rod show (and it’s illegitimate cousin American Chopper) is/was by far the biggest joke for car farces on TV; and not excluding Pimp My Ride here. :slight_smile:

OP said it’s an LS - not very common, either the 3l v6 or the DOHC v8. Not many of those around, no cheap crate engines, I’d think.