Rebuilding a Ford engine sounds like a daunting job, but those who have some knowledge of engines can learn the necessary steps to help them increase the lifespans of their motors. The process involves removing the engine block, inspecting parts, refurbishing parts, and replacing parts. Owners must get every step right to avoid costly mistakes that permanently damage engines, which is why many owners choose to let professionals handle the job.
When to Rebuild a Ford Engine
People have three choices when their engines start to fail. They can purchase new cars, purchase new complete engines, or rebuild the engines they have. Rebuilding is the most cost effective measure, of course, but it is not always a viable solution. Owners should definitely consider engine rebuilds if they have worn engine bearings or incorrectly seated piston rings. Worn bearings create knocking sounds and eventually lead to engine failure. Worn piston rings allow oil to leak out of the cylinders and into the fuel. If the Ford burns through fuel quickly and has a lot of white smoke in the exhaust, then the rings may require replacement. The cost of parts adds up quickly, and it is important to remember that rebuilt engines may not last as long as brand new engines.
The Right Tools
Another consideration when preparing to rebuild a Ford engine is the cost of tools. Not only do owners need large collections of basic hand tools such as ratchets, socket wrenches, and screwdrivers, but they also need gasket scrapers, torque wrenches, and cam bearing installation tools. Those who want to complete the entire process themselves also need measuring equipment, such as digital callipers, micrometers, and dial bore gauges. Support tools like car lifts and engine lifts are also necessary. The car lift gets the vehicle off the ground for easy access to the underside of the engine, and the engine lift attaches to the motor and hoists it out of the Ford body.
Professional Assessments and Other Necessities
Once an owner takes an engine out, the short block, which is the lower portion of the engine, generally needs to go to a machine shop for sanding, cleaning, and refinishing the metal. The other large components, such as the pistons and cam shaft, may require professional examination, as well. The cylinder walls require smoothing, and an owner should purchase new hoses, gaskets, and clamps.
Consider a Ford Engine Rebuild Kit
Because the cost of replacement components adds up quickly, purchasing an engine rebuild kit is sometimes the best solution. Kits come with all the basic parts needed to restore motors but may not include major components such as the piston rings.