• 8 rules for replacing Engines or Gearboxes in Nigeria

    Posted on: October 17th, 2014 by admin No Comments

    How good is your engine and gearbox? That’s always the first question that springs up in ascertaining the current state of any vehicle, because replacing vehicle engines or gearboxes are relatively expensive and tasking procedures. Selection of the best auto-technician for such a complex activity isn’t merely about how experienced a mechanic might be, as one has to consider several other factors before taking the next step to cash-in on these replacement automobile systems.

    If you find yourself in this dilemma, the earlier you work/walk your way out of the situation the better for you and your vehicle. In doing this you need to keep an open mind in considering various options or alternatives because fixing the vehicle may not always be the right decision, just as trading in your vehicle without any fix may just be ill-advised. However the case may be, ensure you digest these spelt out rules which I have coined from my years of involvement in several engine and gearbox swaps.


    engine crane

    Establish the need: A faulty or improperly matched spark plug for instance, can frustrate a vehicle owner to the point that he/she will rather hit the road to get by with public transportation. Such a seemingly minute engine anomaly is enough to trigger thoughts of swapping your engine especially if your current mechanic isn’t helping out in correctly diagnosing the real problem- making the possibility of your engine’s revival seem hopeless. Bottom-line, if it ever gets to the point where all fingers point in the direction of changing relatively expensive engines or gearboxes, endeavor to carry-out an independent verification process. In doing this be on the look-out for very specific problem areas and/or faulty components which form part of your entire engine or gearbox. Also ensure exhaustive analysis and tests our carried out with the right tools and methodologies in arriving at these conclusions.

    Identify the cause of component failure: after confirming the faulty engine or gearbox component that necessitates a total engine or gearbox swap, you have to find out and understand what first led to this component(s) damage. There are several reasons why this is necessary; however the most important reason you need this information handy is to ensure you don’t find yourself back in the same situation a few months down the line. The commonest reason most mechanics recommend an engine swap is because of damaged engine blocks while in the case of automatic gearboxes, bad internal gears tops the list of defects capable of damaging the entire system. In these cases mentioned above, the underlying cause of failure is most likely plain neglect or age-related issues. So beneath all the mechanic jargons, you need to understand your actions or inactions that may have led to the damage of such a significant vehicle system.

    Asides gathering relevant information to forestall a reoccurrence, you need this piece if information for the next step.

    Do the math: should I fix the vehicle or sell it off?

    [Average market value of your car (Nigerian used) – True value of your car] = X

    If the cost of fixing this vehicle or carrying out the capital replacement is close to or is more than the derived value of X, it is advisable to sell off the vehicle the way it is to salvage as much as you can. The only reason you should go ahead to fix is only if there is a slight chance of you selling the vehicle off at a fair price with all systems functional or if you need the vehicle for keeps.

    Research and carry out independent price comparison: don’t just rely on the pricing from one dealer or mechanic even if you have made up your mind about who to buy from (because you trust their products or have a strong referral), having this information helps in bargaining the final price of the engine or gearbox. So don’t hesitate to head to the market.

    Trust your chosen mechanic/dealer (you have no choice): don’t make the grave mistake of buying from A and fixing with mechanic B. If you buy from dealer A, ask for him to suggest a trusted hand for you. But if u choose to go through a mechanic, simply don’t concern yourself about where and how he gets the engine or gearbox.

    Negotiate well: try to get some form of guarantee for the post-fix condition of your vehicle. Some mechanics/dealers give between a 2week to a 6month guarantee. Also try and establish the mechanisms by which such guarantees will hold.

    After the fix test EXTENSIVELY!!!

    Re-schedule/plan your vehicle maintenance: after all the tests, if your vehicle is certified okay, proceed to planning your vehicle maintenance; get your mechanic involved in this planning as much as possible.

    In conclusion, this is one situation no one would love to be in- unless you are an automobile enthusiast who loves reviving old vehicles. This stamps the need to invest time and efforts into proper vehicle maintenance.

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