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Discussion Starter #1
I was given a white 2000 300M in august of 2018. The body and interior are in great condition with no rust on the underside, no frame or body rust, and all interior being in great condition. Roughly 180k miles on her.

The problem, a young girl who owned it previously never changed the oil and trashed the engine. It has very very bad rod knock. I purchased a used/good motor from a auto parts supply house for 200 bucks. It has 90k miles on it. So my plan/project is...disassembling the engine i purchased and replacing all main seals including head gaskets.
The work is going well. I finally have time to work on her and post some progress.
I loved the intrepid i had a few years ago and am super excited to have a 300m.

Below are pics of the replacement engine on a stand. I disassembled it fully down to the block and had the heads pressure checked and milled. My next post i will share the progress.


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Update:

Got the lower and upper parts of the engine all put back together including the timing belt.
With the help of the FSM and of course you guys, i carefully read and reread the procedures and got it done!!

After replacing the oil pan gasket, oil pump gasket, and front crank seal, cleaning the surface of the block, i began the steps to put the heads on and set the timing.
I skipped a step and with that stupid dial indicator (LOL) i set the #1 piston to true TDC. It was way easier with the heads already off since my cheapo indicator wouldnt reach down that far.
Then, before putting the heads on, i rotated the cams to get the Cam tools in place in the rear to lock them into the TDC position. Use CAUTION here!! If you disassembled the engine without locking the cams in place first, make SURE you have the tools in properly as they can fit backwards also. Theres a pic in the FSM for the proper orientation.

I have the timing belt all put on and the motor is timed correctly.
I will post those pics tomorrow


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Thanks. I am excited!!

The only seal i am leaving alone for now is the rear main crank seal. It looked flawless and showed no signs of leaking.
If/when the trans decides to go, I'll deal with it at that time

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Discussion Starter #5
The engine is basically reassembled minus all manifolds and front accessories. Hopefully later this week i can get it all put back together.

I might make a "how to" for the 3.2/3.5L engines on properly reinstalling the timing belt when you have had the cam gears loose or removed for any reason.
There's alot of confusion on this car about that process and I think i have it all sorted out.


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Nice rebuild. She'll "purr" after its installed.

Quick question - why is the drivers side valve train varnished? Did the machine shop that pressure tested the head mention anything about that?
 

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Chris - I believe I’ve seen discussions in the past about the driver’s side valve train and inside of the driver’s side valve cover always being darkened by the nasty crankcase gases all being pulled into and flowing thru that area on the way to the PCV port in the valve cover to go to the PCV valve and intake plenum.
 

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Chris - I believe I’ve seen discussions in the past about the driver’s side valve train and inside of the driver’s side valve cover always being darkened by the nasty crankcase gases all being pulled into and flowing thru that area on the way to the PCV port in the valve cover to go to the PCV valve and intake plenum.
Yup,

https://www.dodgeintrepid.net/18-general-discussion-second-generation/1404922-new-project-300m-special-edition-3.html

Btw, it seems that photobucket no longer holds everyone's photos hostage as a 3rd party host if they don't have a paid subscription. Last time I looked at that thread most of the photos had the photobucket speedometer image saying sorry, so on and so forth.
 

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Btw, as far as the How To goes, there are probably 50+ threads on here if people would take the time to search the site, and a few people have different methods to keep the belt in place or to install or compress the tensioner.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well guys, got most of the engine all put back together.

Except i noticed one issue and that is someone stripped the original oil drain plug. There is an aftermarket plug in place with a smaller one that comes out in the middle.
Can't believe i didnt see it sooner, but oh well. Just a minor setback

I'm debating on whether or not I want to swap oil pans from the bad engine thats in the car to this engine OR...attempt to thread tap the pan and put a new bolt in.

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Discussion Starter #11
Also, i am bypassing the Oil Cooler system. I'm taking out that stupid Tee by the Oil filter and just threading the sending unit right into the block.

The other return side into the oil pan i will just put a 3/8" plug in there

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Well guys, got most of the engine all put back together.

Except i noticed one issue and that is someone stripped the original oil drain plug. There is an aftermarket plug in place with a smaller one that comes out in the middle.
Can't believe i didnt see it sooner, but oh well. Just a minor setback

I'm debating on whether or not I want to swap oil pans from the bad engine thats in the car to this engine OR...attempt to thread tap the pan and put a new bolt in.

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Why not replace the Oil Pan now while it's easily accessible?
 

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Update.

I am very excited, we got the engine pulled and the new one in place yesterday. I have pics to share and will post later when all is finished.

It actually went very smoothly...with 2 snags.
The front face, radiator, condenser, ps pump, ac comp, alternator, wiring, and exhaust clamps all came out smoothly.

The starter Sucked lol that was snag #1
Snag #2 was getting the engine to line up with the trans to mate them back together.

We got everything back together. But....we had to take the lower intake back off because the damn wiring harness runs underneath the upper rad hose connection.
Started her up and she popped right off! The valves were very chattery at first but then we took her for a test drive.
Wow!! WELL WORTH IT. It runs great. No check engine light. No dash lights, everything works!


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That little cooler in front is the transmission cooler. I did not put that there, there must have been an issue with the factory one.

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Another successful transplant! It Lives!

Did you do the Timing Belt/Water Pump while the engine was out? What about the Oil Pan? Get that fixed?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Another successful transplant! It Lives!



Did you do the Timing Belt/Water Pump while the engine was out? What about the Oil Pan? Get that fixed?
Yes the timing belt, water pump, and rear timing seals were all done with the engine out.

Guess what...BOTH OIL PANS are screwed. We used the better pan as it seemed to have a sturdier plug in it.
However....it does drip. I will make one last attempt to fix the drain plug and if that fails ill get another pan.

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Looks great! Congrats on getting the rebuild done and running!

As for the oil pan, all the work you've done, get a new one. They are a pain in the ass to try to fix, just because of the way the threads are cast etc. It makes them hard to drill out and helicoil, or repair the threads. Just easier to get a new pan by the time you are done. Or, as I've done in the past; and one of the few "quick fixes" I like; get a speedy plug. They work very well; I always asked the owner of the vehicle, but once installed, no more issues, and money saved!

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/rnb-65109?seid=srese1&cm_mmc=pla-google-_-shopping-_-srese1-_-dorman&gclid=CjwKCAiA4t_iBRApEiwAn-vt-wQGqTTsXXJvnN9FToWl3_N4XQefsdyQccW4E32P6qj7MOPp6UCInBoC3-gQAvD_BwE
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Well been driving her to and from work for the past 3 days now.

Man its running great, accelerates great, shifts great, no MIL or codes.

I do have an oil leak right now tho in 2 places. 1 is from the oil pan drain like i stated previously. I am going to replace it. The other is more towards the rear/passenger side. It looks like it drips on the exhaust on that side because i can smell it when the car starts up.
I am running the cheapest cheapest 10W-30 oil right now because i have the intention of only going to 500 miles before changing it with the filter to good high quality 10w-30. I need to address the 2 oil leaks first tho

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Make sure you didn’t spill any oil when filling it. On the 3.2/3.5, if you spill the slightest bit of oil when filling, it ends up on the head and exhaust and doesn’t quickly burn off - it stays and gives off a burning smell for several days. Just mentioning that in case that is what happened. You could try spraying down around the fill hole and below it with brake parts cleaner with the engine cold to see if the smell stops.

It’s worth using a funnel to fill or add oil to prevent the smell. It only takes a drop or two.
 
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