Mistakes to Avoid When Swapping an LS Engine

The logo of a red Chevrolet Corvette.

Drivers are often surprised by the amount of detailed work that goes into getting an LS engine swap done just right. What kind of wiring will you need? Which components will have to be replaced or added? A plug-and-play solution could work. Or, it could cause a whole lot of grief that will send you right back to the drawing board.

There is a growing global community of LS engine enthusiasts, and many of these folks have successfully swapped out their engines on their own. However, others have had the opposite experience. Like with many DIY projects, figuring out what you don’t know the hard way can cost you in time, sweat and financial resources. 

What makes swaps challenging is that they can differ greatly from one to another. The process depends a great deal on:

  1. What kind of engine you’re starting out with
  2. The condition of your previous engine
  3. The dimensions and spacing available
  4. Your horsepower requirements
  5. What additional parts will be needed
  6. Many other factors

As you weigh what option will give your vehicle the performance you need, learn some lessons from the mistakes that drivers have made before you. Here are some common ones:

Choosing an Engine That Doesn’t Give You the Horsepower You Need

Selecting the engine itself – and how much horsepower you will require – is your first big decision. Sometimes you just don’t know what the driving experience will feel like until you’re behind the wheel of your upgraded vehicle. This will determine which fuel system and other parts to purchase that will be used in your particular engine. 

Those kinds of determinations must be made based on a fair amount of research and consideration. You’ll be stuck with whatever it is you chose, so be sure you’ll be getting enough horsepower to enjoy all the capabilities your new engine will provide.

Overpaying for Engine Parts & Accessories

Unless you’re a pro, it’s easy to go down the path of buying a bunch of parts, or simply overpriced parts, thinking they are necessary to give you that higher quality engine and energy boost you’ve been craving. And sure, expensive injectors can sometimes provide better driveability. But the priciest ones on the market might not be appropriate for your vehicle. The same goes for that sweet racing turbo you've been eyeing. 

Be sure to educate yourself and learn as much as possible about engine swaps before having it done on your car. Start by reading up on requirements for your model and watch videos of swaps being performed. In addition, talk to someone who has performed engine swaps on your kind of vehicle before going out and spending a bunch of dough on components you might not even need.

Buying from Abroad Instead of Local, American-Made Engine Parts

As for those parts you do need, there are multiple benefits to getting your parts from a local source. The right car parts can notoriously be hard to find. When they have to be shipped from overseas, the consumer is at the whim of shipping delays and other issues that can easily be avoided when getting accessories 100% made in the U.S. Locally made means:

  • Higher quality 
  • Transparent product information
  • No delays or other unpleasant surprises
  • Better customer service
  • Replacements accessible
  • Parts and accessories in stock

Solution: Let a Professional Handle Your Next Engine Swap 

There are numerous reasons to have an engine swap done professionally rather than changing it out yourself. People who attempt it on their own can find themselves elbow-deep in problems after wasting money and time. The best way to save time and guarantee positive results is by having a professional with lots of swap experience do the job for you.

And if you’ve got what it takes to go it alone, that person can still help you get the parts you’ll need to your doorstep.

Our team of experts at ICT Billet can make sure your engine swap is done right the first time. We will walk you through every step of the process and let you know what parts or accessories will be necessary in your vehicle.

Call us at 316-300-0833 to speak with an LD engine specialist today.


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