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View Full Version : 133K Miles and Need a New Engine or Rebuild!?


1fasdzl
06-04-2015, 06:56 PM
I am stunned...

Bought my 2006 3500, 170"WB, high-top with 132,000 miles about 3 months ago. I've put about 1000 miles on it over the last few months. All fluids checked and levels have been ok. No fluid leaks either. It's been running perfectly, until yesterday.

Was driving and slowed down as I approached an intersection. The truck just simply shut off. I tried starting it a few times and it would crank and crank and nothing. I kept trying and eventually it would start with my foot on the accelerator and revving it a bit. As soon as I would take my foot off, it would die. Pushed it over to the side and towed it to a local shop.

There are no codes and after inspection, I've been told the main bearing(s) are bad. The loud noise from the engine is from the bottom end and is worse at the back. The rear main seal is now leaking and the oil coming out has metal shavings in it.:censored:

I'm stunned that at this low mileage, the main bearing(s) are bad. Of all the reading I have done on this forum, I don't think I've ever come across this!

This is my work truck so I dead without it. I am in San Jose, CA. Does anyone have recommendations? Is it worth a rebuild or am I better buying a complete engine? Rebuilt or used?

Help please! I need to get this fixed right away. :idunno:

EZoilburner
06-04-2015, 07:10 PM
You can ruin the main bearings on any engine simply running them with little or no oil. Was there any indication at all before this happened, such as lack of power, hard to start, random idle rpm, etc?

With only three months owning it I would go right back to the dealer. If private seller then that is another story.

Rob S
06-04-2015, 07:45 PM
The combination of events you mention seems unusual. Running well, then not running or stalling seems to indicate fuel supply or bad fuel issues.

Noise from bottom end indicates excessive wear, due most often to absence of lubrication, totally unrelated to the above. Worn bearings, metal shavings, and main seal leakage are related, and AFAIK definitely unusual for this mileage.

So, most likely two separate issues.

Regardless how it occurred, the solution depends entirely if there is any comeback on the seller, if not, is the rest of the truck good enough to warrant a 10-15k investment in a new or rebuilt engine?? If neither, you maybe have some parts for sale. :frown:

1fasdzl
06-04-2015, 08:27 PM
EZoilburner- I agree...it's very strange. Oil level is full. It was purchased from a private party so I don't think I have options there.

Rob S- I agree that the stalling seems fuel related. That's certainly the most common problem.

I was quoted $1600 for R&R of a new motor. The shop is checking to see if anything can be done without a total rebuild.

The only odd thing that happened recently was occasionally when I would start the car, the low coolant light would come on, then turn off in a few minutes. Also, when the motor was cold, if I would rev it, the light would turn on for a second. After warm up, it would go away. Sure enough, the coolant was a little low.

icarus
06-04-2015, 11:31 PM
^ Interesting...any evidence of coolant in the oil?

icarus

surlyoldbill
06-04-2015, 11:34 PM
I wonder if the harmonic balancer sheared or something and the timing got all messed up. THAT would be an instant stop! Take a look at the balancer and see if it's screwy and if it looks like it's been messed with before. Sometimes people will simply try to weld it in place if the keyway has been sheared, and maybe this was done before you bought it, and the weld gave way.

1fasdzl
06-05-2015, 12:13 AM
So I was quoted $8600 to rebuild the whole engine, installed. If the cams are good, it would cut $1100 off that total. Does that sound right?

Any recommendations for a shop in San Jose, CA area?

Throttlejockey
06-05-2015, 01:03 AM
Lots of info in a recent thread.
http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=40165

1fasdzl
06-05-2015, 04:31 AM
Lots of info in a recent thread.
http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=40165


Yep...that was one of the first threads I came across. What info are you referring to?

Throttlejockey
06-05-2015, 02:20 PM
Well, there were prices posted for a rebuilt engine from Jasper as well as used engine prices. As well as pros and cons of buying a used engine. Seems like all the questions you asked are right there.

ECU
06-05-2015, 02:37 PM
I saw one sprinter with bad bearings. It was an oil pump failure. They rebuilt the lower end at 550,000 miles. I posted a picture of it a couple of years ago.

crazyswede
06-05-2015, 03:26 PM
So I was quoted $8600 to rebuild the whole engine, installed. If the cams are good, it would cut $1100 off that total. Does that sound right?

Any recommendations for a shop in San Jose, CA area?

For reference:

new injectors are $1500 to $2500 per set of 5 depending on whether they are new or rebuilt
A new Cylinder head with valves and maybe cams is around $2500
a rebuild kid including pistons is about $2000.
add in accessories, belts, hoses, labor....it ads up.

You may be able to use your old injectors and you can likely just freshen the head for a fraction of the new head cost. If you need a new turbo factor in another $1600.

1fasdzl
06-06-2015, 04:58 PM
So after digging around, I found a company in TX that sells a rebuilt longblock for $4900+300 shipping. 3/36K warranty...parts only. I'd be looking at about $7K complete, installed.
Local shop will rebuild mine and install it for the same price, but only 12/12K warranty. I'm leaning this direction because they are local. Either way, it's better than the original $8600.

Aqua Puttana
06-06-2015, 05:13 PM
So after digging around, I found a company in TX that sells a rebuilt longblock for $4900+300 shipping. 3/36K warranty...parts only. I'd be looking at about $7K complete, installed.
Local shop will rebuild mine and install it for the same price, but only 12/12K warranty. I'm leaning this direction because they are local. Either way, it's better than the original $8600.
Not that you asked...

If it can be determined, I would go with whoever has the most experience and has actually rebuilt some Sprinter engines.

Aside from the special tools needed, there are some watch-outs and pitfalls with rebuilding these engines. The piston oil jet installation and turbo lube circuit are just two that come to mind. There are more.

Dennis Lindenengineering has commented in various posts about some of the issues. If you do an advanced search using lindenengineering as member name and "rebuild" for search it should get you some of the info.

Good luck. Keep us updated.

vic

smiller
06-06-2015, 06:10 PM
Heed the advice above. A Mercedes diesel is not a Chevy V8 and one mistake can lead to a nightmare. Only buy the engine (or any service on the engine) from a trusted source with a known good track record.

1fasdzl
06-06-2015, 06:41 PM
I completely agree with you. Of course, both companies have "worked on quite a few" of the Sprinters with no problems. If the company is in TX and I'm in CA, I really don't have any recourse. The local shop has good reviews and have been around for many years so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

I called around and there are literally 2 shops that will work on a Sprinter engine. One of the shops referred me to the other shop so there is only 1 option.

jjrubino
06-07-2015, 01:25 AM
You did not mention that you heard engine noise prior to your stalling problem. Is that the case? IMHO you would likely have had oil pressure issues if your engine were that bad. I have heard so many horror stories about mis-diagnosis of engine problems! I agree with the posters who refer to fuel problems. Diesels make some odd noises when the fuel is not right. At a minimum change the fuel filter and see what happens. I once had a reputable shop tell me I needed a new rail when it was a clogged fuel filter. I recommend a second opinion. At least get Doctor A to weigh in.

jjrubino
06-09-2015, 11:11 PM
How about an updated?

Gabe Athouse
06-10-2015, 04:47 AM
Yeah I wouldn't expect a diesel to "pop" under the circumstances you describe. Have you had a look inside at the parts in question? I know when I was shopping sprinters I saw one which had a rod go through the block but that sounds exceptionally rare and would probably make a noise when it happened. As with any big service, get s second opinion! Or have a look and take pix and show the forum dudes for their opinions.