Nissan Frontier Forum banner
1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
2004 Frontier Crew Cab 4WD
Joined
·
150 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The timing belt was previously changed at 107k miles. It was at 199800+ miles, and I planned to replace it again next week after it hit 200k. Didn't get the chance. It died on my way to work this morning.

Is there a good source for engines? Is it worth it to get it replaced? The truck is in pretty good shape otherwise. Seems unthinkable to just sell it as a non-working truck, as I can't imagine it would bring an amount of money I could live with.

What do I do?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,875 Posts
1. How did you determine that the timing belt had broken???

2. I would first try to turn the engine with a socket on the crankshaft pulley bolt. Even though the V6 is an interference engine, my neighbor's daughter had her Xterra timing belt break and it didn't bend any valves, so he just installed a new timing belt. So maybe you got lucky there, sure didn't with plans to change it out in just 200 more miles !!!
 
  • Like
Reactions: the_rogue

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,539 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,021 Posts
This is a difficult decision. A used engine from the junkyard has risks. A reman engine costs about $4-5k plus installation cost. It should come with a warranty.

I think the happiest people are the ones who go the reman route.
 

·
Registered
2004 Frontier Crew Cab 4WD
Joined
·
150 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Any special tools, besides an engine hoist, that I'll have to get? What are the most difficult parts of replacing this engine?
 

·
Registered
2004 Frontier Crew Cab 4WD
Joined
·
150 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Also, now that I look a little closer, eBay says most of these don't fit my truck, even those that say in the description they should (VIN 4th digit E). Then it shows some and says 'these fit your vehicle' but they all say JDM in the title, and the description says that 'things' need to be modified to make them work in American cars, without saying what. Ideas??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,539 Posts
In college a buddy of mine "flipped" a few cars with dead engines by dropping in junkyard units. Sometimes they were not direct drop in's. Various sensors and small attachments were different and we just swapped them from the blown engine to the donor. The hardest part was getting all of the electrical clips undone. Half of them would break. Each has a special release that you had to figure out. Getting the engine in and out would require at least 2 sets of hands, ideally 3. 1 person to run the lift, and 2 to help maneuver the engine (and trans) around, and to disconnect things that you forgot.

Labeling was KEY. Tape both ends of the wiring and hose connections. Label on both sides. Transfer the labeling from the blown engine to the donor engine. Take a lot of pictures and make a bunch of notes.,
 

·
Registered
2004 Frontier Crew Cab 4WD
Joined
·
150 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
THough you might be able to get away with jsut replacing the valves or head the rebuild cost could make it not worth it. Instead a used 3.3l can be bought for 500-1500$. This is what I did with my 300zx.
Engine 3.3L A 4th Digit VG33E From 12/98 VIN 7 Fits 99 PATHFINDER 144172 | eBay
Engine 3.3L A 4th Digit VG33E From 12/98 VIN 7 Fits 99 PATHFINDER 72118 | eBay
Search Results (car-part.com)
A 3.3L 'A' 4th digit, yes. Mine is 'E' which seem to go for quite a bit more. Any idea why? Wondering what, specifically, is different.
 

·
Registered
2004 Frontier Crew Cab 4WD
Joined
·
150 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well since it was towed back to my house, it's dripped a puddle of both oil and coolant on the driveway, where it had no leaks previously. Seems like it must've sustained some major damage for that to start happening all of a sudden.
 

·
Registered
2004 Frontier Crew Cab 4WD
Joined
·
150 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I don't know what to tell you. I'm very sorry. Just telling you what I see.

Moral of the story, it's effed. Sudden catastrophic engine failure of one variety or another. Probably multiple, the way things have been going.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
92 Posts
The timing belt broke on my frontier. I assumed the engine was toast, but said fuck it and ordered a new belt and water pump anyway. Installed the parts, and drove the truck for a few more years.

Was your truck leaking oil & coolant after the belt broke, or after it came back from the mechanic? If the mechanic took the engine apart enough to see valves, they probably slapped it back together haphazardly. I'm wondering if that's why it leaks now.

My engine developed rod knock some years later after the timing belt broke... I pulled the engine and rebuilt it. One thing I noticed was that I had 2 damaged hydraulic lifters. One had the c-clip missing, the other had a decent bit of metal chipped off. I'm not sure, but this could have been damage from when the timing belt broke.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,137 Posts
Also, now that I look a little closer, eBay says most of these don't fit my truck, even those that say in the description they should (VIN 4th digit E). Then it shows some and says 'these fit your vehicle' but they all say JDM in the title, and the description says that 'things' need to be modified to make them work in American cars, without saying what. Ideas??
JDM is the way to go imo if you want to keep the truck. They're low mileage and affordable. Basically, you just move your accessories over to the new engine since everything is backward on the Japan engines bc the steering wheel is on the opposite side so your Power Steering Pump, AC Compressor, Alternator etc will have to be taken off your engine and put onto the JDM.

Read This Thread. Everything you need to know about swapping in a JDM is in that thread. Make sure you get a pic with passenger valve cover off before you buy. I've seen JDM swaps successfully done many times. Its the same engine just the accessories are backwards. Your accessories on your current trashed engine will mount up no problem

 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top