How Much Does an Engine Swap Cost? A Complete Review

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If you have wondered how much does an engine swap cost, you are not alone, as many car owners and enthusiasts wonder the exact same.

How Much Does an Engine Swap Cost

There is no universal price for an engine swap, with multiple factors determining the actual cost of the swap. What are these factors, and how exactly do they affect the cost, you ask? We have you covered in our complete guide on engine swapping below!

How Much Does It Cost to Swap Your Vehicle Engine?

It costs between 2,000 and 10,000 dollars to swap your vehicle engine, on average. However, the engine swap costs can be as much as 20,000 dollars for extra parts. The labor cost to swap engines is usually no more than 1,500 dollars. 

While you will generally not expect to spend more than 10,000 dollars, if you have to purchase a lot of new components, you could be looking at a price well north of that. In fact, some people spend more than 20,000 dollars for their engine swap. 

Knowing the price at which you can swap your engine is crucial before making the decision. After estimating the engine swap price, some may find it better to consider other options. Do not be deceived by just the price of the engine, as other additional parts costs will be incurred during the entire engine replacement process.

What Factors Influence the Final Price of an Engine Swap?

Factors that influence the final price of an engine swap include the type of engine, the engine block used, labor costs, vehicle type, electronic compatibility, and the price of additional components for the engine swap. It is essential to know these factors before making a decision to swap an engine. 

Knowing these factors is not alone, though, as their respective impacts on the final price are more important. We will duly consider these factors below and their influence on the swap costs. 

– Engine Type

The type of engine you are buying is perhaps the biggest contributor to the price of the engine swap. New engines can cost anywhere between 500 and 15,000 dollars. Used engines will cost significantly less. The exact price of the engine also hinges on multiple factors. One such factor is its performance. 

Engine Typeis

As you would expect, there are different brands and models of engines, all offering different performance abilities. The higher the performance the engine can offer, the more expensive it will be, which then increases the final swap. This performance is usually measured in terms of torque, horsepower, and the number of cylinders the engine has. 

Aside from the quality the engine offers, whether the engine is a diesel or gas engine also matters. Generally, a diesel engine will cost more than a gasoline engine, and we must reiterate that you absolutely can not interchange them to cut costs – if your current engine is a diesel engine, it must also be swapped with a diesel engine. 

Also, whether the engine is a stock engine or a different engine comes into play. Stock engines will save you money as it serves as a direct engine replacement, so you don’t have to spend on additional components. However, if you are getting a different engine from what came with your vehicle, particularly one that offers a significant upgrade, you will be spending much more. 

– Engine Block

The type of engine block you choose plays an important role in the price of the engine swap. Basically, three are three engine blocks to choose from, namely short block, long block, and complete engines, depending on the components they come with.

A short-block engine contains about one-third of all the components needed for the engine swap. On the other hand, long block engines contain most of the components and parts the engine needs. The final class – complete engine – contains all of the parts needed.

Expectedly, short-block engines cost less than long-block engines and complete engines. However, it is not always the best option, as while you may save money initially, you may end up paying even more to purchase the remaining components. It is only advisable to purchase a short-block engine if the engine parts from your own car are still in peak condition.

A long block engine contains the overwhelming majority of the parts you need, and many don’t even need to purchase other components if they are not after specific customization properties. This engine will definitely cost you more when buying, but it can save you a lot of money and stress in the future. The complete engine is the most expensive but is perfect if you don’t have time to assess the parts you need for your engine.

– Labor Costs

The costs of labor in an engine swap play a significant role in the ultimate price of the swap. However, unlike the other factors on this list, labor costs are tricky to estimate. It can vary widely depending on factors like your location, the exact mechanics and engineers you use, and how complex the engine swap is.

Labor Costs

Some states simply have cheaper automotive services than others, and in such states, labor will be cheaper. You also consider the mechanics you use, as they charge differently. Most mechanics charge between 80 and 120 dollars per hour for labor. 

Furthermore, the number of hours used to swap engine will affect the price. This makes sense, as mechanics generally charge on an hourly basis. The more complex the engine swap, the more hours it will take, and the more mechanics will charge. This is the case for people that want specialized customizations or are trying to swap different engine types. 

– Vehicle Brand and Model

The vehicle whose engine is to be swapped itself will affect the cost of the swap. The lighter and more compact your vehicle, the cheaper the engine will be. For instance, you cannot compare the engine swap price of a car to a truck’s. Since the car is much smaller, you will expect its engine to cost less, and this tells on the engine swap price. 

Even among the same vehicle type, the brand and model of the vehicle will also affect the engine price. For instance, the engine price of luxury car manufacturers will be higher than for regular car manufacturers. Even among the same manufacturers, the model of the vehicle also affects the engine price. 

Then, the labor costs for engine swaps are also influenced by the vehicle type. Mechanics may charge more for certain luxury vehicles as well as vehicles with a specialized engine swap process, as these generally take more time.

– Wiring Compatibility

The electronic part of an engine cannot be overlooked when considering the factors that determine engine swap price. You have to ensure there is compatibility in the wiring of your vehicle’s engine and that of the potential swapped engine. 

Wiring Compatibility

If they aren’t compatible, then you need to pay for a new wiring system, and that will, of course, set you back more money. The exact influence of electronic and wiring compatibility will also depend on the type of engine and vehicle type. 

What Are the Engine Swap Costs of Common Cars?

The engine swap costs of common cars are usually around 4,000 dollars, including labor costs. Generally, the engine swap price of common cars can offer a fair representative idea of how much swapping engines of other cars will cost.

Of course, the factors that affect a regular engine swap price will also affect these common cars. One factor that is especially important here, though, is whether the engine is used or not. Newer engines typically cost more than used engines, and you should consider that when making cost comparisons with these common cars.

Some of these common cars and their new engine swap costs are as follows:

  • Ford 302: 1,500 – 4,000 dollars
  • 2018 Ford F-150: 8,000 – 10,000 dollars
  • 2010 Honda CR-V: 7,000 – 9,000 dollars
  • 2005 Toyota Camry: 3,500 – 5,000 dollars
  • 2003 Subaru Impreza: 4,000 – 6,000 dollars
  • 2015 Toyota Corolla: 4,500 – 6,000 dollars
  • Chevrolet 305: 2,000 – 3,500 dollars
  • 2007 Ford Mustang: 4,000 – 6,000 dollars
  • 2011 Jeep Wrangler: 4,000 – 6,000 dollars
  • 2002 Honda Accord: 3,500 – 5,000 dollars
  • 2016 Subaru Outback: 6,000 – 8,000 dollars

Is It Cheaper To Rebuild a Vehicle Engine or Swap It?

It is cheaper to rebuild a vehicle engine than swap it in most cases. This is usually because rebuilding an engine involves replacing or augmenting certain components, and only the price of those components will come into consideration when computing the final price. 

Is It Cheaper To Rebuild a Vehicle Engine or Swap It

You could be saving up to 2,000 dollars with an engine rebuild compared to if you straight out swap it. However, it is not always the instance that rebuilding an engine is better than engine swapping. Some engines are not suitable for rebuilding due to faulty blocks and structures. 

You should also note that rebuilding an engine takes more time than an engine swap, and if you are using a mechanic, the cost could rapidly begin to rise.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is It Advisable to Swap an Engine?

Yes, it is advisable to swap an engine if the performance boost is worth paying between 2,000 and 10,000 dollars for. Fortunately, you can always get a short-block engine if you only need minor performance boosts, and the price may be justifiable. 

Also, consider the resale value of your vehicle. If the vehicle is not worth that much, then it isn’t really advisable to swap the engine. You can consider selling the car itself or its scrap parts instead of swapping its engine. 

2. Can You Swap an Engine Yourself?

Yes, you can swap an engine yourself if you have the required expertise. Unfortunately, this is not something many people possess, and they have to refer to professional mechanics for the engine swap. If you swap your engine yourself, you will save up to 1,500 dollars in labor costs.

Rebuilding an engine, on the other hand, is much more technical than an engine swap. Here, even skilled non-professionals can struggle. In this case, it may ultimately be better to just leave it to professionals instead. 

Conclusion

Swapping an engine is a common fix for performance and quality issues among many car owners. However, before making a decision to swap an engine, it is important to understand how much it will cost, and here are the points to note:

  • On average, it costs between 2,000 and 10,000 dollars to swap an engine, although it may rise to as much as 20,000 dollars in some instances.
  • Labor costs are typically between 500 and 1,500 dollars.
  • How much does an engine swap cost depends on factors like engine type, engine blocks, labor costs, vehicle type, and electronic compatibility.
  • It is generally cheaper to rebuild an engine than swap it, and you can save up to 2,000 dollars.

If you had any questions about the cost of an engine swap heading into this article, we’re sure it has been cleared. 

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