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E36 Engine Swap


OshanR
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hi i just brought my 1st car :D and its a 1.8 ltr and has abt 135000 miles on clock. so as i understood recently im in for a world of hurt :( and i wanna keep this car

so is it preferable to

* rebuild the engine

* just repair the parts which goes out

* swap for a new (used) engine with low miles(my fav since i can go for a m52 as i googeled 8-D )

has anyone done a engine swap in SL? where and around how much will it cost?

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Is there anything wrong with your engine or r u just being pessimistic?

its bit of both because the guys at mils tld tht aftr few months i might need a valve build so it means othr parts are sorta worn out too. basically what moves has to be worn out at somepoint so having a "medium worn" means more replacements on the way. anyhow i was thinking adding more power since the chassis is far more capable than what m40 can offer. it all depends on the above question how much it will cost :)

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First of all, congratulations on your first car. Would love to see some pictures :)

I assume you've taken the car to M to change the fluids/filters and set up a base and not for anything actually broken?

If it runs well you're best off living with it for a while and see if it actually needs a rebuild or a replacement. Especially considering both options are rather large undertakings. If you're lucky, you might be able to get away with some minor to moderate repairs. 135K is not an astronomical number if the car was well taken care of.

If you're looking for a more powerful engine, you will have to source one from a reliable source (locally used engines passed on as imports, lower mileage being mentioned etc are common pitfalls)

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hi i just brought my 1st car :D and its a 1.8 ltr and has abt 135000 miles on clock. so as i understood recently im in for a world of hurt :( and i wanna keep this car

so is it preferable to

* rebuild the engine

* just repair the parts which goes out

* swap for a new (used) engine with low miles(my fav since i can go for a m52 as i googeled 8-D )

has anyone done a engine swap in SL? where and around how much will it cost?

Congratulations Dude,

I have seen lots of E36 with 200k on the clock but no issues and i guess your car with M43 engine which is very reliable so if their is no issues with the engine then don't transplant any.

Check the cooling system and use only the BMW coolent (BMWs are incredibly sensitive to operating fluids and coolent is playing a main role)

Cheers

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I think my suggestion is the suggestion of many here. Keep the car original if there isn't anything profoundly wrong with it. Due to import restrictions its not easy to bring down engines as it once was and the imported ones cost an arm and a leg. As with any used product you can never be 100% sure of the condition. So you might end up worse off than started.

As for approaching repairs, there is no need to fix problems that don't exist yet, but it makes sense to do some repairs in batches. If you have to do a top end rebuild such as replacing the valve seals etc, you could always replace the piston rings if they look worn, just to save you the hassle of taking the engine apart again and the cost of the gasket set. It also make sense to check on the condition of the water and oil pumps and replace if necessary.

Otherwise stick to a regular maintenance schedule and you would be fine. Less people mess around with cars (like taking things off, putting back on etc) the better it will hold itself together.........

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Never trouble trouble till trouble troubles you. As suggested by the other members use it for sometime till a repair comes up.Doing an engine swap cause of an engine head rebuild isn't feasible. On the other hand if budget isnt a constrain get down an M50 or an M52 that would make the car a lot more fun to drive.

Edited by kelum_wj
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  • 1 month later...

Congratulations Dude,

I have seen lots of E36 with 200k on the clock but no issues and i guess your car with M43 engine which is very reliable so if their is no issues with the engine then don't transplant any.

Check the cooling system and use only the BMW coolent (BMWs are incredibly sensitive to operating fluids and coolent is playing a main role)

Cheers

Thanks

1st thing which worries me is its a m40 which is the belt driven so to be safe i alrdy changed the belt. so its not the "reliable" range of the bmw engines

Never trouble trouble till trouble troubles you. As suggested by the other members use it for sometime till a repair comes up.Doing an engine swap cause of an engine head rebuild isn't feasible. On the other hand if budget isnt a constrain get down an M50 or an M52 that would make the car a lot more fun to drive.
2nd thing is its so damn slow. pickup takes ages. i'm a bike guy so i'm not the most sensible driver. doesnt mean i want super pickup just decent engine response. even my parents 1ltr micro van does better acceleration than this. anyway i know its not a valid point. just that im a bit disappointing at the "ultimate driving machine"

as for the engines point of view where can i get a decent inspection? how much will a swap like this cost (labour + days)?

i was searching around and found this for sale

*link removed later*

apart from that will a turbo conversion bring more success? since the engine is maintained at millis and they have the history there (im guessing thats a good clue that it has been in good maintaince).

Edited by OshanR
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First off, the forum doesn't allow adverts from that site to be linked here, just so you know.

Second, It sounds like you're skipping a whole lot of steps to make the car 'better' by going straight for a motor swap or even the turbo. You cannot expect the same numbers as a bike from a car to begin with. Maybe you can test drive another E36 (318i?) to give some frame of reference to your perspective. Maybe it's not particularly slow as you may think and this maybe standard.

Suppose it is slow on pick up, get the motor and 'box checked out and attend to any shortcomings first to see where you get. Is it an auto by any chance?

Otherwise, from the information you posted, it sounds like you're about to hack into a well maintained car with not that many miles on the clock.

Hopefully the Bimmer guys here would point out more specific things to look at.

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First off, the forum doesn't allow adverts from that site to be linked here, just so you know.

Second, It sounds like you're skipping a whole lot of steps to make the car 'better' by going straight for a motor swap or even the turbo. You cannot expect the same numbers as a bike from a car to begin with. Maybe you can test drive another E36 (318i?) to give some frame of reference to your perspective. Maybe it's not particularly slow as you may think and this maybe standard.

Suppose it is slow on pick up, get the motor and 'box checked out and attend to any shortcomings first to see where you get. Is it an auto by any chance?

Otherwise, from the information you posted, it sounds like you're about to hack into a well maintained car with not that many miles on the clock.

Hopefully the Bimmer guys here would point out more specific things to look at.

sorry the link is removed.

i dont expect the numbers of the bike just that it feels very delayed in the response compared to the van.

i guess you might be right, i have to get this thing checked up. what kind of tests are there to check if its giving its full potential without taking the engine apart?

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