Rebuild The Engine Or Trade The Pickup Truck? Ultimate Guide

September 15, 2022

You thought standard maintenance was all your diesel engine required, and you’re right, preventative maintenance can definitely preserve the life of your engine. But eventually, you may find yourself facing the question of whether you need to repair your engine, or trade in your truck.  Your vehicle isn't as powerful as it once was, and a cloud of blue smoke is billowing from the exhaust. With a clunk and a boom, it might happen suddenly and before you know it, your engine has just stopped.  

When Should You Have Your Engine Rebuilt?

Engine misfires, severe oil leaks, engine burning oil, engine head gasket leaks, and engine pistons slapping within the cylinders are all indicators that your pickup truck’s engine may need to be rebuilt. It all boils down to this: a mechanic has examined your vehicle, ruled out any other potential causes, and told you, "You need an engine rebuild."

Because various issues might make it seem like you need an engine rebuild when you don't, you'll need to rely on a reputable diesel repair shop that is stilled in diesel diagnostics. A faulty knock sensor might give the impression that your engine will explode. Low oil levels may also cause engine knock, and other timing-related sensors may also prevent your truck from starting. Electrical issues may require a new wiring harness rather than a complete engine rebuild.

Symptoms of Engine Failure

Do you think your engine needs to be rebuilt? Check out these common symptoms to see if they apply to you:

  • When the engine is idle, it bangs and rattles. Worn-out bearings often generate a bottom-end knock.
  • Your exhaust constantly produces a heavy cloud of smoke. Your engine frequently burns oil because of worn-out seals.
  • The timing belt has snapped. When the timing belt fails, many engines have interference-style engines, which are severely damaged inside.
  • It refuses to turn over. It might be seized, but check the battery, starter, and wiring before you replace the engine.
  • When you accelerate, the engine clatters. Even though it works OK, the pistons are sliding around too much in the cylinders, necessitating an engine overhaul.

What Does it Cost to Rebuild an Engine?

You're probably wondering how much an engine rebuild costs. It's not as simple as placing a numerical value on it. That's because the cost of an engine rebuild varies depending on the engine and the extent of the damage. If parts need to be replaced there is going to be an additional cost than if they just need to be repaired or cleaned. Likewise, labor hours will also contribute to the overall cost of a rebuild. 

At the low end, you can probably expect between $2,500 and $4,000. Simply changing bearings and seals and removing and reinstalling the engine are examples of this form of engine maintenance.

It might also be considerably higher. If the crankshaft is broken, the cylinder head cannot be rebuilt, the pistons must be replaced, or the engine block is severely damaged, the engine repair cost might rise by thousands of dollars.

Contact Us

Have a question for our service team? Do you need to schedule an appointment in the shop? We'd love to help you out.

Contact Dirty D's Team