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I haven't done one in these trans. but they usually just pry out if no retainer plate or ring is on them. Just try not to nick any sealing surfaces inside or out. I've always used a socket or plastic pipe or whatever to reinstall seals when possible. Good idea on the rear engine seal since they can be a issue. Yes just drain out all the fluid you can, put fresh into the converter when reinstalling and coat the stub shaft and seal with it so seal is lubed on start up. 6T45 trans has a 8.5--9 qt. overhaul fluid capacity according to Alldata.
That's why even regular partial drain/fills are better than nothing and doing it every 30-40k miles keeps the trans. alive. That's how I get 200k miles out of a trans. . Your on the right track, good luck.
 
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Discussion Starter #22 (Edited)
Holy Oil Gunk, Batman!

Spent some time prepping the donor engine last night with the help of a friend. I drained the transmission, then we stripped the Verano's wire harness from the engine and drained the oil. Next thing was to remove the ignition coils so that we could remove the valve cover, and then remove the crankshaft pulley so that we could remove the timing chain cover.

I've attached pictures - boy, there seems to be a lot of crud caked everywhere! On the plus side, the timing chain and guides look OK (but, they are being replaced as part of the prep work, anyway).

So, my next questions: is this normal for one of these engines with ~103k miles? Should I clean the crud off before reassembly? If cleaning the crud off, does anyone have recommendations on how to do it?

My thought is to remove the oil pan, too, and then start cleaning everything with a handheld steam cleaner, see what that frees up, and then it can drain out the bottom of the engine. I would start from the top (camshaft/valves area) and work my way down the front of the engine. Is this a good or bad idea?

Also, in a slap-your-forehead-moment, since I had to take the crankshaft pulley off I might as well order and replace the front crankshaft seal while I'm here. For the oil pan, it looks like that just uses a gasket sealer...there's no specific gasket, correct?
 

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My thought is to remove the oil pan, too, and then start cleaning everything with a handheld steam cleaner, see what that frees up, and then it can drain out the bottom of the engine. I would start from the top (camshaft/valves area) and work my way down the front of the engine. Is this a good or bad idea?

Also, in a slap-your-forehead-moment, since I had to take the crankshaft pulley off I might as well order and replace the front crankshaft seal while I'm here. For the oil pan, it looks like that just uses a gasket sealer...there's no specific gasket, correct?
I have seen a lot worse than your pics, all depends on how often the oil got changed and with what oil.
Clean the oil pan, timing cover and valve cover and all unbolt pieces as good as you can.

I would NOT steam the block, you will knock loose many small chunks that you will never get out.
They will get down in the bearings and oil passages.

GM shows silicone for the oil pan gasket, some aftermarket gasket sets like Fel-Pro might have a real gasket.
A 2.5 mm bead is recommended, torque to 18 ft. lbs in sequence, use your judgement and watch the sealer push out evenly.
Crank seal change is a must, you should get one in your timing cover set.

When assembling, timing cover first and oil pan second.
 
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Discussion Starter #24 (Edited)
I added a few more photos. I tried to get some images of the intake valves of the dead engine. The are really dirty, and I think I can make out a bend in them, too. The engine died (likely skipped timing) during re-start, not at running speeds. I also added some photos of underneath the valve covers on the dead and donor engines. The dead engine had 150k miles, but it definitely looks like better oil was used throughout its life - although that doesn't matter much when the oil runs low and the engine dies :surprise:

@rednox301 - If I have the engine out already, should I just pull the head and deap-clean it all? I know you caution about oil passages getting clogged if it is altogether and I try to clean it, but what if I pull, clean, and reinstall the head? If I leave it like this, I'm worried about something starving the valves like in this thread:
https://www.chevymalibuforum.com/threads/lifter-noise-after-oil-change.34361/

Relevant image from that thread below:
 

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From your pic #2, your donor cam area does not look that bad.
This is just my opinion and your call.

The area I would be worried about if you steamed it would be the main and rod bearings.
Pulling the head would help the top end but not the piston, rod, crank area.
I know you want it as clean as possible, but you have to weigh the pros and cons.
All opinions from other forum members are welcome.
 
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Discussion Starter #26 (Edited)
@rednox301 - I do appreciate your time and all your feedback! Another question for your opinion, then: what about performing an engine flush, instead, once it is reinstalled and before putting it into regular service?

I'll be replacing the front and rear crank seals, timing cover and valve cover seals, and intake and exhaust gaskets, anyway, as part of the prep work (in case removing the build up might expose a problem with an old seal).

Or maybe I just make sure that my kids start using full-synthetic at low-mileage change intervals (3k) from now on with this new engine? Their old engine looked pretty good under the valve cover (looks like they had used synthetic), it's just that the engine consumed oil so fast that it would run low on oil.
 

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@rednox301 -

Or maybe I just make sure that my kids start using full-synthetic at low-mileage change intervals (3k) from now on with this new engine? Their old engine looked pretty good under the valve cover (looks like they had used synthetic), it's just that the engine consumed oil so fast that it would run low on oil.
I generally stay away from flushes.
I vote for the option above, low mileage oil changes.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Next part of this nightmare - 2 of the exhaust manifold studs snapped off. These are the 2 closest to the timing belt side, so the #1 cylinder.

Attempts to extract the broken off studs using Left-turning drill bits and a bolt extractor have been unsuccessful. I'm at the point where I will have to consider helicoil inserts to remedy the situation. Oof.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
Helicoils installed for 2 of the exhaust manifold studs

Today's progress - drilled out the locations of the 2 broken-off exhaust manifold studs and installed helicoils and new studs. This certainly would have gone easier with a machine shop, but I didn't want to remove the head. For those faced with this on their repair in the future, do your best to get those studs drilled out keeping the drill bit perpendicular to that side of the head...but it's not easy without it being on a machine. Still, the end result should work fine.

Helicoils installed


Exhaust Manifold studs installed


More of the exhaust manifold studs


Also, and I've never seen O2 sensors in this bad of shape in an exhaust before. The picture below is of the upstream sensor from the dead Equinox engine with 148k miles on it. The upstream O2 sensor from the donor Verano engine also looked this bad, and that only had just under 103k miles on it.

Upstream O2 sensor after 148k miles
 

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Good job. Yes, that O2 sensor looks like trash.
 
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Discussion Starter #31
Is this a ground lead that attached under one of the AC compressor bolts?

I've got everything ready with the donor engine where I'm about to drop it back into the Equinox.

As I was mounting, connecting and routing the Equinox's engine harness onto the donor engine, I'm a little stuck at the connection in the pictures below. I don't recall where I unbolted it from. I do not think it is connected to the starter (those connections are over closer to the starter location anyway). My best guess is that it is a ground lead for the harness that connects under one of the mounting bolts for the AC compressor. Can anyone confirm my hunch?

Again, this is for a 2012 Equinox.



 

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Discussion Starter #32
Other items completed today...

New timing chain and guides installed


Cleaned the throttle body


Replaced the Spark Plugs (old plugs, and then old vs. new comparison)



"Burped" the Torque Converter (pre-filled it with fresh fluid before installation)


Installed a new Torque Converter seal (note, there is a retaining circlip that needs to be removed to remove the old seal)


NOTE: The engine mount bolts are different for the Verano and the Equinox. The Equinox uses the shorter bolts. These bolts and the exhaust manifold are the two main differences I've noticed between the engines. Also, there is a coolant return/overflow line that is routed differently between the two engines. In all cases, just make sure to use the Equinox parts on the installation of the Verano donor engine.
 

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Wow great pics, it will run great.
 

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Wire color for the mystery terminal would be my choice, look under the plastic, black is ground in my book.
 
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The 2014 Repair Manual does not show a clear pic of the neg cable eyelet to the block.
It describes a stud on the engine and the round end with tab in your picture.

Round end of battery cable over stud, tab toward engine, washer next, then nut last.
Torque to 22 lbs./ ft.
 
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Discussion Starter #36 (Edited)
That seems to have been the case for the Verano. In my pictures of the removed Equinox engine, that same spot didn't look to have had a connection on it. I'll ground it to the block. Thanks!

Late evening update: the wire is BLK/WHT, so it looks like its a signal ground line - so yeah, it just gets grounded to the block. Also, there is a main ground line from the battery to the block - that one bolts to a stud off the end of one of the transmission to engine bolts at the top of the transmission. The donor engine is back in the engine bay, and I am completing all the connections, hose routing, etc. I might get to try and start it tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #37 (Edited)
Located the signal ground point on the original engine block

I was reviewing the photos I took during the removal of the dead engine, and I found the grounding point for that lead. Photos below (it's a little blurry, but the shape of the terminal can be made out in the image). I chased the threads with a tap before connecting it back to the block. This bolt location wasn't used on the Verano engine harness.

I also confirmed it in this screen-grab from an alternator removal video on Youtube...


Here is another point of difference between the engines - the cable from the alternator to the starter has to be swapped, as well.


The donor Verano engine was installed back into the Equinox's engine bay yesterday. I'm working on reconnecting everything and may be able to try and start it today.
 

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I love it!!! Great job!

Having performed an engine swap, albeit 50 plus years ago and with a much simpler car, I know some of the frustrations, but more importantly the GREAT sense of SATISFACTION that comes from hearing it fire that first time!!!
 
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