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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone,
Im a little bit lost right now in terms of my car, as I just picked it up from the dealership for an issue that was supposed to be fixed involving a valve, which in the end they said meant the engine was toast.

The dealership said that for them to replace the engine it would be 8k, and I've seen multiair engines go for as little as 600 online, so I've decided I'm just going to get a salvage motor and put it in myself.

The problem with this is that I really don't know how. I've always wanted to learn how to work on cars, and in general try to do as much as I can on my cars including changing oil or replacing alternators, simple things.

Can you guys send me some videos or some threads that could educate me on

a. Buying the right motor for my car

b. Taking the old motor out

And C. How to put the motor back in.

I appreciate any help you guys can give me!

Vehicle specs:
2012 fiat 500 sport 1.4 multiair
Odo: 100,026
5spd manual
 

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What exactly is the reason the engine is toast? Many times it's a misdiagnosis by the shop or dealer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What exactly is the reason the engine is toast? Many times it's a misdiagnosis by the shop or dealer.
So they said that one of the hydrolic valves was bent or broken, and it makes the ecu trip out and causes a misfire or puts the car into limp home mode. It doesn't have throttle response and has a variety of lights on the dash including an esc light and a red battery light. I don't think it's a misdiagnosis and honestly I've spent a lot of money trying to find out the reason for why it doesn't work so I'm just going to swap the engine. Basically a repair is out of the question.
 

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So they said that one of the hydrolic valves was bent or broken, and it makes the ecu trip out and causes a misfire or puts the car into limp home mode. It doesn't have throttle response and has a variety of lights on the dash including an esc light and a red battery light. I don't think it's a misdiagnosis and honestly I've spent a lot of money trying to find out the reason for why it doesn't work so I'm just going to swap the engine. Basically a repair is out of the question.
Okay - that does not make a lot of sense. Is it the valve is bent or broken, if so, it won’t go into the limp mode, you should be hearing a terrible racket. That doesn’t cause ECU to trip out and cause misfire, because bent or broken valve would simply directly cause misfire. Because the logic presented doesn’t make sense we constantly ask how do you know for sure that you need engine swap. What’s the compression reading? Did you look inside with borecope to see what condition the condition is in? Those are all very important information in determining what the next step is.

having said that…some of the work on the engine is so much easier if you just pull it out. Like, I’m seriously pondering pulling the goddamn engine out to do the timing belt because there’s just so little space! Finding the right motor is difficult with used motors. Try finding totaled, rear-end damage car. You need to dismantle the entire front end of the car, bumpers, crossmembers, sub frame, etc. Pull the drive shaft out, and pull the engine and transmission out, sort of slide out from the front, instead of lifting it out like olden days. Reinstalling it is an absolute reverse. One thing I just can’t remember is the ECU and BCM. I don’t think you need to do anything to them if you keep them as they are and don’t touch it, but I just can’t remember that for sure. You’ll need a lot of tools, and warm and dry space. Google fiat 500 engine removal, and you should be able to find some YouTube videos.

Good luck.
 

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I used a broker at Saratoga Classics in N Y. He found me the right code # and engine with only 28K. He arranged shipping as well, for $250. Engine was $1200. I did the swap and viola! turned the key and drove off. The only tweek was the engine I got was an automatic. That required me to swap oil pans. No biggie. Great time to install a new clutch.
It's not fun, but with an engine hoist and a leveling cradle, It's not awful. Also, replace the motor mounts.
Doug Bruce
2012 Fiat 500 Sport #311
 
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