When to pull my trucks' life-support plug

I have a 2000 Chevy S10, 2WD, V6. It has over 150,000 miles on it, over $3,000 in repairs in the last year and a half, and it no longer runs. The last repair was having the lower intake gasket replaced. I know the fuel injectors are flooding the cylinders when not running. My mechanic tells me now that the engine has “lost compression,” and now it refuses to start.

My mechanic is pushing for me to get a new vehicle. I want to have it fixed. Should I listen to him, or have the engine rebuilt and the injectors replaced? I only have $1,000 to do either.

I doubt you could have the engine rebuilt for $1,000. To do it correctly would cost more than that.

Have you tried to find a used engine for the truck?

$1,000 isn’t enough to do a head gasket job, let alone a rebuild. A proper rebuild will cost more like $2,500 to $3,500. A hack job rebuild can be done, but will not last.

Unless your planning on doing the work yourself, of course. Do you have an engine hoist? You can rent one when your ready to pull the motor. You’ll also do good to buy and engine stand. Also, know a good machine shop? This is the key to a good rebuild. A crappy machine shop will ruin the engine block.

I did not think of trying to find a used engine. Can I look myself, or do I designate that job to my mechanic?

My recommendation is to pick up a Haynes manual and a compression gage at the parts store and check it yourself. Something doesn’t sound right here.

If the injectors really are flooding the cylinders, then either they’re leaking, the ignition system isn’t firing (my guess), or the fuel pressure regulator is bad. These things can be fixed.

And, frankly, I’d want to see for myself the compression readings. They might be typical of a high mileage engine, but that doesn’t mean the engine will stop completely. Were you burning a lot of oil when it was running?

If fuel is leaking into the engine, the poppet valves on the spider assembly are bad and the spider assembly requires replacement. This was GM’s Central Port Fuel Injection system. This system has a central fuel injector/pressure regulator located below the intake manifold. From this plastic tubes run to the poppet valves at each cylinder. These poppet valves comprise of a ball and spring and fuel pressure is used to blow these poppet valves open to introduce gas into the engine.

The problem is, purchasing a new spider assembly will eat up most of that $1000,00 you budgeted for repairs.


Although I think a 10 year old truck with 150,000 should be worth saving, based on what you have said, I would move on to my next vehicle, and it sure wouldn’t be another Chevy S-10.

Move on, your steed needs to be put out to pasture.

You got 9 years out of your Chevy. More then I got out of my 84 GMC S-15. My last year of ownership I spent $2k on parts/repairs…and I did MOST of the labor. It was time to cut and run…and I’m so happy I did.

Time to say goodbye; don’t send good money after bad. You’ve had good use out of it.