The Chevy Equinox 3.0 V6 Engine Removal is the result of a problem with the valve in cylinder 1. When I called the dealer to see what it would cost to fix, the service man kinda laughed under his breath and said, “parts and labor about $9000”. I asked him why that expensive just to replace the head. He told me that they don’t even make aftermarket heads for the V6 and told me I would be better off just buying a whole new engine. I called another local shop and they said pretty much the same thing but their price was ONLY $6500.
I decided right away that I would just find an engine from a junk yard and do it myself. What I did not know (at that time) was that the car needed to be lifted up off the engine and that you could not simply “cherry pick” the engine out like I’m used to on any vehicle I had ever worked on prior. After doing some research, I was able to determine that I could buy a lift for about 4 grand and (after several weeks of calling every yard in America) I found a matching V6 engine from a Cadillac that had been rear ended with just 40,000 miles on it. $1200. Now I’m in it for around $5200 and I get a lift out of the deal. My wife gave the green light and here we are…..
Hi. I’m Steve and I am not a mechanic and this is a 2012 Chevy Equinox that needs a new motor. I never done this before in my entire life but I’m determined to figure it out. This is my halfway prize and this is the old motor and that is the new motor or engine if you prefer. So, I’m gonna do a lot of stuff wrong in this video, I know for sure and I don’t really give a crap. If I can help somebody else along the way and help them to avoid making the same mistakes that I made then the video is worth it. And to all you know it all Monday morning quarterbacks who can do it better than I’m doing it make your own damn video. Let’s do this.
All right. It’s the 2012 Chevy Equinox. It looks like we just turned 10,000 miles and check it out. Turn it on and see we got here. All right it just came on we’ve got service to bill track and we’ve got a check engine light I can already tell you that that’s a P301 which is a misfiring cylinder and as we drive this thing runs very, very rough.
So, I’m at my favorite car mechanic place, a good friend Jonathan works here and all right so before we pull this engine we’re gonna evacuate all the refrigerant out of it. So, it passed the cylinder compression test with 190PSI.
160 or 770.
But it failed it failed the leak down test.
Because compression it can still with those very small leaks in the cylinder, small leaks in the valve like this one has it can still build compression. It’s not a big enough leak, there’s not a valve missing or something like that. So, when you have a little leak that’s when you have to go to leak down and that’s simulating cylinder pressure with drop air you put air in it and you make it at top dead center it should hold air pressure minus the rings and it’s not. I don’t know if they have a valve failure or a valve seat failure, it might be crack valve something like that.
All right. So, the time has come to dive into this 2012 Equinox this engine needs to be replaced and we’re gonna replace it with this guy right here. This is a very lucky find. It’s a junkyard find from a car that was rear-ended with 44,000 miles on it. They don’t even sell the heads for this car. Anytime you call anywhere to try to find heads for this car they just laugh at you and as a matter of fact when I was calling around junkyards telling him I had a 2012 Equinox 3.0 engine they laughed at me then. Anyhow I couldn’t replace the head so we’re going to replace the whole thing. We’re going to get started here disconnecting the negative battery cable and then I’m probably gonna rip out the airbox stuff and I’ll figure things out as I go along but that’s the plan for this engine.
All right so it’s been about an hour and this is the progress as of now. I’ve got to stop now and get some work done and then I will be back for more.
So, at this point I spent a little bit of time underneath the car and drained the oil and drained the radiator and really what I want to do is I want to cover some things that are more challenging than you think that they would be – getting this guy out right here. There are four fasteners on the side and then there are two on the other side then there’s this weird-looking thing right here basically he goes right there and he just got a wrench and he’s like a big bolt. So, there’s So, you might accidentally overlook well you won’t now but 1, 2, 3, 4 and these things they just keep spinning and spinning and spinning I just basically used a nut drive I just went to town on it. But so, this is what it looks like on the bottom and you’ve got these massive connectors and basically just make sure that you unscrew those things as much you possibly can where they totally freewheel and then it’s just a matter of trying to gently lift this thing out and then one by one disconnecting these connectors. So, I got it but it wasn’t easy and it might not be easy for you so I thought I would include that into the video.
Onto the next. All right so inside this box way down in the hole down yonder is this guy right here. I will put him in a bag but that’s what he looks like he was down in there. The driver’s side coming down there it is, talk about this one and that one now. You see what that is. This guy right here is connected to the engine and there is another dude below him, I think you can see a little thing in red right there. All right so this and this I’m disconnecting next. Well there’s just so much stuff connected to this engine.
All right so underneath the car exhaust I’ve removed the exhaust pipe from below the catalytic converter in the front and the back and the way back that’s the part right there. Easy little PB and got everything soaked and just waited an hour or so and everything came pretty much right off with some hair so that’s good.
So, that’s the easy part the hard part is…. holy crap, getting these catalytic converters off of the manifold is not going to be easy at all and my other concern is that O2 sensors obviously I don’t want a big part falling and the O2 sensor to be hanging from its electrical connection.
So, I’m kind of stuck right now so I’m going to take the front wheels off and these fender wells so that I at least feel like I have a sense of accomplishment that’s what I’m doing next.
All right so I’ve removed the front wheels and the black fender guard things but none like the Tahoe, they’re not really binding anything but a little space right there.
So, I’m back on the top of the car again and I’m gonna go after this is a shield for the catalytic converter, I need to get these nuts off to get the primary nuts off and just try to make a little progress at a time. Of course, I don’t know how the hell I’m gonna do the back one. Check it out, tight reach to the rescue. I got the wrench way up here and then the tight reach and then the socket is down there now if I could get the car to hold the phone for me not the best but check it out, boom baby, tight reach to the rescue. All right obviously I need both hands.
All right with the heat shield out of the way we go after this exhaust piece. It’s got the catalytic converter on it in the front and I’m really, really worried about the back but we’ll get to that when we get to that. All right give it perspective right here, this big guy right here he was connected via that little hole right there and he goes down there must be some sort of ground or something and then this guy comes off and he looks like this. That’s kind of where I want to get right now is this right here cuz I’m getting ready to take that connection off.
All righty back under the car this is the rear catalytic converter right here and the trick to getting to that nut way up there, that guy right there was a long extension that goes all the way back to here so, if that helps any….
All right so at this point I’m going to disconnect the power steering lines from the cooler, I’m gonna disconnect that hard line to the compressor of the AC. I think at this point I can disconnect the stabilizer arm connector things and don’t forget that is the steering bolt I’ll disconnect that was well. So, those four things are next on my list.
All right I made some progress. I got the caliper off and the stabilizer linkage is now off on both sides. So, here power steering is disconnected from the power steering cooler. The other thing that I said that I was gonna do that I haven’t done yet is the steering.
All right I’m having trouble getting this radiator hose off driver’s side so I’m gonna take this little panel off.
Finally, I got these hoses done. That one’s done and that one’s done and then this guy right here the little blue tab is connected to that thing whatever that is. So, that was on there like that I just pinched the things, pulled it out and now that is connected to that which is connected to the big vacuum in the back. So, this guy right here is attached very seriously somewhere down there and I’m not sure where he goes on the other side. This the negative battery cable and has a super ground right there. Disconnect that ground that way this whole piece was that will just go with the engine away.
Jonathan’s here to the rescue helping me with the stuff that I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. All right so let’s talk about the power steering again.
High-pressure in this so can just stay on the subframe so you want to take it off, it’s just a pain in the butt.
What do we say? These two guys….
Take does out goes….
And see how far this falls.
Hopefully you can get the axle out and then they’ll just pop right out of the transmission.
And then the other transmission guy is right there and he’s an E-clamp.
Okay. What else?
What did I forget?
That is fair enough to get the subframe down. Then the engine well obviously and the 2 bolts and the torque mount.
The torque mounts.
And it’ll feel like it’s falling out. Once you have those out it’ll flop around in there a bunch but…
All right we’ve got to separate these transmission lines from the transmission cooler and the radiator. Once we remove that black thing we’ve got those funny E-clips that are so fun to get out right there and in order to get those out there’s a special tool that I don’t have, I’m gonna try to go ahead and use these picks. There’s one on the bottom and one on the top and we’ll see how it goes. And it’s really just a matter of finagling but that’s what that little booger looks like and there’s no real easy way to tell you how to get it off other than to put your pick in there and just keep trying, be persistent. I haven’t figured out the secret.
Okay so with both of these transmission lines out of the cooler and the radiator I’m gonna go after the power steering lines. All right I got to do this guy right here, I got to do that hard line right there. Okay so neither one of those was very difficult just make sure you got a pan underneath it to catch all the fluids.
It’s time for the for the subframe stuff to go so, going after these two big guys right here and if that works out I’ll do the other side. So, with air those guys came out easy-peasy, this fell off, I had to pull on it a little bit to get the axle out and this guy flew off. So, on the other side I have to make sure I make annotations as to which freaking way it goes because he flew off. So, this axle should probably come straight, I’ll repeat on the other side and then hopefully I can drop the subframe out.
The passenger side came out really easy.
All right we’re getting down to it. We got to get this engine separated from the subframe so we could drop the subframe and leave the engine up there, get a few more things detached. So, we’ve got this guy right here and obviously the other side and there’s one just like him right there that’s a little harder to get too I’ll have to figure that one out.
Okay so not only did those come out but I didn’t pay attention to which one was which and now I’m realizing one is longer than the other so we’re gonna have to figure that part out but they’re out. The engine is a little bit shaky, it shakes in there but it’s still attached.
Now I’m going after the sub. All right so here’s the plan. You use this hydraulic table with a big-ass piece of wood, get those guys loose and then just let it rest on the table and lower the table and the subframe and hopefully the engine was stay in there which pretty sure it will and get the subframe out of the way. Here we go.
Voila, what do you think? All right so I’ve seen some guys basically pull the motor still attached to this and some people not. I opted for not because I want to take the engine and the transmission I want to put it directly on this table without being encumbered by all this other stuff. Since I’ve got to disconnect it from here anyway I just figured this was going to be an easier way to do things plus with all the stuff out of the way I can get easier access to some of the fasteners that I couldn’t reach earlier. Now what I have to do is figure out a place to store this thing, that’s next.