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Unread 12-01-2011, 06:53 AM   #1
JeffBowser
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Ticking, lifters, and cams :PopCorn:

So my ticking noise is now fairly well identified as a collapsed lifter. The debate now is whether it will be safe enough to just replace the lifters (all of them) and not replace the cam. Other options are possibly just replacing the sticky lifter, as opposed to all of them, or replacing all of them plus the cam. My initial Google hunt turns up quite the raging argument over the wisdom of new lifters on an old cam.

Anyone here just replace the lifters without replacing the cam and have long term success?

Caveat - I have to hire this out, and money is tight.


Last edited by JeffBowser; 12-01-2011 at 06:54 AM.. Reason: clarification
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Unread 12-01-2011, 07:34 AM   #2
mdm
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You're right about this being a hot debate when this topic is discussed.

My take? It depends. How's that for a clear, concise answer?

I would take a good look at the bottom of the lifter and the cam lobe.
If both are in good shape, consider replacing just the one lifter.
If the bottom of the lifter is not good, take an even closer look at the lobe. If the lobe still looks good to you, still consider just replacing the lifter.
If the lobe is questionable, replace the cam and all lifters.

One thing to keep in mind is that with the 4.0L you have to remove the head to remove the lifter. A majority of your labor costs will be removing/installing the head.



Let the debate begin.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 07:51 AM   #3
JeffBowser
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I assumed the engine would have to be pulled, or the grill/radiator removed to remove the cam, thinking it has to be pulled out from the front. That made me think labor costs to replace the cam also would go way up. If the costs end up being very close, it would be false economy not to spring for a cam, too.......
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Unread 12-01-2011, 08:10 AM   #4
mdm
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The radiator and grill do have to be removed to pull the cam.

Replacing a single lifter is a huge labor vs parts cost breakdown. Lifter = 3-4 dollars. I'd image the labor for removing/installing the head would be about three hours. $200 or more? At a time like this, it'd would be nice to have the four cylinder.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 08:21 AM   #5
chris142
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I replaced just the lifters in my old YJ with a 2.5 and it ran another 15k untill the motor blew up. I'm going to assume that the cam and new lifters were ok since it lost a rod bearing.

But you are correct in that it's normally not recomended to use new lifters on a used cam. I'd be inclined to try it though. I'd add some Comp Cams Cam break in addative for the first hr or so.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 08:32 AM   #6
JeffBowser
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Good feedback, thanks guys.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 09:34 AM   #7
55willystruck
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I'm kind of in a similar situation as my '05 LJ with 88K now has already had the OPDG issues (on it's 3rd now) and a full complete rebuild at under 1000 miles at the dealer, which included new cam, crank, rods, lifters, etc. With no job currently, the 5.3 swap is out of the question so it needs fixed as cheap as possible. I'll likely try to do this myself to save labor expenses. I've talked with Comp Cams a fair amount about repairing this and from the sounds of things, they have a very mild stock replacement cam that should fit the bill perfectly. Cost for the custom grind was $198. They do recommend doing all lifters at the same time to save the new cam but said I could do regular OE/dealer lifters if I liked and would still have a good performing engine when done. This was bare minimum, assuming everything else is OK.

Had another quote which included lifters, springs, head machine, cam, valves-roughly $1500 in parts alone. Neighbor had cam/lifters replaced at dealer recently which was about $3500 for the job. Yes, grill, radiator, etc. has to come off and head must be removed. Fair amount of labor here. I THINK if everything else is good, I can do this for around $500 in parts total-provided everything else is good inside. Cam, lifters, gasket kit and new oil pump. I suppose a water pump should be replaced as well now that I think about it.

Interested to hear a few other thoughts on this. I'm NOT paying the dealer to rebuild again and can't afford an engine swap at this time. Interested to see what others have done, or are in the process of doing.

Best of Luck,

Mike
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Unread 12-01-2011, 09:37 AM   #8
2004sahara
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i was told it was "ok" to use new lifters on a used cam.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 10:32 AM   #9
chevy2169
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2004sahara View Post
i was told it was "ok" to use new lifters on a used cam.
You can, but as stated earlier it depends on the condition of the camshaft. Example: I installed a cam with my buddy in his 2001 trans am last year. He bought the cam used on ebay. After a tiring and lengthy DIY process, the car ran great once it was tuned properly for the new cam duration and lift.

To the OP, if money is tight I have a couple suggestions for you.
1. If you have any mechanical experience, doing the cam job yourself (especially with someone who has done one before) can be easier than you think. Frustrating, yes. Tiring, yes. Time consuming, yes. Doable by yourself with a decent book about your engine by your side, VERY!

2. If you can't or don't want to tackle the whole job by yourself, do part of the job yourself to save money. As stated earlier, the biggest part of the labor costs is the cylinder head removal and grill removal. Try removing all of this and have the jeep towed to a mechanic if you live close to one. Then get it towed back and put the head back on and reassemble everything else.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 10:42 AM   #10
chevy2169
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 55willystruck View Post
I'm kind of in a similar situation as my '05 LJ with 88K now has already had the OPDG issues (on it's 3rd now) and a full complete rebuild at under 1000 miles at the dealer, which included new cam, crank, rods, lifters, etc. With no job currently, the 5.3 swap is out of the question so it needs fixed as cheap as possible. I'll likely try to do this myself to save labor expenses. I've talked with Comp Cams a fair amount about repairing this and from the sounds of things, they have a very mild stock replacement cam that should fit the bill perfectly. Cost for the custom grind was $198. They do recommend doing all lifters at the same time to save the new cam but said I could do regular OE/dealer lifters if I liked and would still have a good performing engine when done. This was bare minimum, assuming everything else is OK.

Had another quote which included lifters, springs, head machine, cam, valves-roughly $1500 in parts alone. Neighbor had cam/lifters replaced at dealer recently which was about $3500 for the job. Yes, grill, radiator, etc. has to come off and head must be removed. Fair amount of labor here. I THINK if everything else is good, I can do this for around $500 in parts total-provided everything else is good inside. Cam, lifters, gasket kit and new oil pump. I suppose a water pump should be replaced as well now that I think about it.

Interested to hear a few other thoughts on this. I'm NOT paying the dealer to rebuild again and can't afford an engine swap at this time. Interested to see what others have done, or are in the process of doing.

Best of Luck,

Mike
As I said above it's not a very difficult job if you have the tools and a little mechanical experience. Just get a decent book to have as a side kick for the job. Don't over look a new timing chain if you do a new cam. If your engine has higher miles on it, consider replacing it when you do the camshaft.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 11:59 AM   #11
JeffBowser
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I do not have the time, and it's my daily driver. I do have the budget to get it done for me, but I am not wanting to run the bill up on parts/labor that might not be necessary.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 12:03 PM   #12
mdm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffBowser View Post
I do not have the time, and it's my daily driver. I do have the budget to get it done for me, but I am not wanting to run the bill up on parts/labor that might not be necessary.
To keep the costs down, you will need to have someone doing it you can trust. Otherwise, you will be getting that famous phone call "Sir, you need 12 new lifters, a new cam, cam bearings, and timing chain & sprockets. When can you bring by a check for $1500?"
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Unread 12-01-2011, 12:26 PM   #13
JeffBowser
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My mechanic is also my neighbor. He owns a local shop that specializes in exotic vehicles, been doing advanced work on my Jeep for the last 10 years. I trust him pretty well, and I feel lucky to know him.
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Unread 12-01-2011, 12:33 PM   #14
mdm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffBowser View Post
My mechanic is also my neighbor. He owns a local shop that specializes in exotic vehicles, been doing advanced work on my Jeep for the last 10 years. I trust him pretty well, and I feel lucky to know him.
Everyone should be this lucky!! I hope his other customers don't get disturbed by having your rig in the bay next to their exotic vehicle. Maybe they would feel better if you wash it before it goes in?
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Unread 12-01-2011, 12:53 PM   #15
JeffBowser
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No kidding. I used to not use him for that very reason. Finally he told me one day he will take all cars, and he wished people would stop being intimidated by his specialty. I took him at his word and started using him, and even started sending our roofing company trucks to him as well. I don't know what his 7 figure exotic car customers thing when they seem my vehicles there, but he doesn't care, so I don't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdm View Post
Everyone should be this lucky!! I hope his other customers don't get disturbed by having your rig in the bay next to their exotic vehicle. Maybe they would feel better if you wash it before it goes in?
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