Rebuilt Engines Vs. Remanufactured Engines

I’ve been running into something lately when talking with customers, something that greatly concerns me for consumers. Many folks are falling prey to companies selling rebuilt engines, thinking they are buying remanufactured engines. This mistake can cost them hundreds of dollars and leave them right where they started: needing an engine. This won’t be my longest blog, but will rather explain the differences between rebuilt and remanufactured engines. Keep in mind that a lot of folks incorrectly use the terms rebuilt and remanufactured – and some use them interchangeably.

A rebuilt engine is an engine that was broken at some point along the way and then taken apart. Rebuilders identify the broken part or parts, replace them, reassemble the engine, and sell it. The problem with this is that all the parts not replaced (normally over 95% of total parts) are very worn, and in high tolerance applications like an engine, new parts stress old parts. A 4 cylinder rebuilt engine can have, for example, 1 new piston and 3 old pistons. This is a potentially unreliable fix for your engine problem. Think about it: one piston failed… what’s keeping the three old pistons from doing the same thing? To me, “rebuilt engine” is a dirty, dirty word.

Remanufactured engines are completely dissassembled. The only parts reused in legitimate remanufactured engine are the crankshaft (which will be magnafluxed and repolished), the camshafts (which will also be magnafluxed and repolished) and the block casing/head casing. Everything else should be new, and the parts will typically be of higher quality than the OEM parts.

Installation wise, most mechanics will prefer a low mileage used engine over a remanufactured engine simply because labor costs will typically be lower on the installation of a good used engine. I would always prefer a low mileage used engine over a rebuilt engine.

If you need a quote on a used or remanufactured engine, please feel free to call us at 901-266-9996!

  • Jordan Mallory

    My boyfriend is always telling me the exact opposite, but he’s also very mechanically inclined. When it comes to rebuilding used engines, he winds up getting results similar to a low mileage one. I think it really depends on whether or not you know what to look for and how to DIY on the fix ups.