How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

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How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby Dark_Passenger - April 24th, 2015, 7:31 pm

Just wanted to do a little write up on my recent project on the Escape. Since this is technically an "aftermarket" procedure, I posted it in the Powertrain Mods. It will take me a few posts to get all the info out so don't be alarmed if it seems like only half the info is here

This applies to 2005-2008 Escapes (tribute or mariner) that have the 2.3 Duratec motor (Automatic, 2WD or 4WD). I blew out the bottom end of my motor and the price for an "Escape" 2.3 motor is crazy! Cheapest I could find in my area was $1500 for one with 95,000 miles. I did a LOT of research on these motors to see what cars they come out of. If you just want to swap another 2.3 into your E/M/T, you can also use the 2.3 out of the Focus or Fusion. Just be sure to inspect the engine so that you don't end up with a 2.3 fusion motor that has VVT, this will NOT work in the Escape.

So, after finding that the 2.3 motor from the Focus will work for the E, I wondered if the 2.0 would also work. As it turns out, the 2.0 is the exact same as the 2.3 with the exception of it being 1/2 and inch shorter (that's where the displacement is taken out). Typically, if you can find a 2.0 with the same year as your E, almost everything will be plug and play. I on the other hand found a 2008 Focus 2.0 motor and put it in my 2006 so I had to do a few extra steps (which I will go over). I managed to get this '08 2.0 (30k miles) at my local salvage yard for $400. Over $1,000 cheaper than the Escape 2.3 AND it has waaay fewer miles on it, I mean this engine is just now broken in!


Without further ado, I will go over the maintenance procedure. I wont go into too many details about actually pulling the engine and swapping it because there are already a ton of guides out there (or buy a Haynes or Chilton's). I will post the steps and if you have questions just ask. This is the procedure for dropping the motor out of the bottom. If you are pulling out of the top, you don't have to remove the crossmember and instead of dropping out, just pull it up with a cherry picker. It will be a tight fit but it WILL come out (after a lot of wiggling and cursing). I cannot stress this enough, be sure to remove the engine roll restrictor from the rear of the transmission. It will give you a lot more room to work with

All vehicles:
1. With the vehicle in NEUTRAL, position it on a hoist.
2. Release the fuel system pressure.
3. Remove the engine air cleaner and air cleaner outlet pipe.
4. Remove the battery tray.
5. Drain the engine oil.
6. Drain the cooling system.
7. Remove the starter.
8. Remove the catalytic converter.
9. Remove the accessory drive belt.
10. Remove the left front drive halfshafts.
4WD vehicles:
1. Remove the transfer case.
2WD vehicles:
1. Remove the bolts and the lateral support crossmember.
2. Remove the front drive intermediate halfshaft.
All vehicles:
1. If equipped, remove the bolt and ground eyelet.
2. Remove the power distribution box cover.
3. Remove the nuts and disconnect the cables.
4. Disconnect the electrical connector from the power distribution box.
5. Remove the bolt and disconnect the ground strap. Loosen the bolt and disconnect the 42-pin electrical connector.
6. Detach the wiring harness retainers from the battery tray bracket and position the wiring harness out of the way.
7. Disconnect the transaxle electrical connector.
8. Disconnect the shift cable from the transaxle manual lever.
9. Position the transaxle control cable and bracket aside.
10. Disconnect the transmission range (TR) sensor electrical connector.
11. Detach the transaxle control harness from the brackets.
12. Disconnect the fluid cooler tube.
13. Disconnect the output shaft speed (OSS) sensor electrical connector (black).
14. Disconnect the turbine shaft speed (TSS) sensor electrical connector (white connector).
15. Remove the transmission fluid cooler retaining bracket bolt.
16. Position the fluid cooler tube aside.
17. Remove the bolt and the OSS sensor.
18. Detach the transaxle control harness from the retaining clip.
19. If equipped, disconnect the block heater electrical connector. Detach all the block heater wiring harness retainers and position the wiring harness aside.
20. Disconnect the upper radiator and coolant vent hoses.
21. Remove the nuts and the coolant vent hose brackets. Position the coolant vent hose aside.
22. Detach the heater hose support strap from the stud.
23. Disconnect the heater hoses from the heater core.
24. Remove the retainers and the accelerator cable snow shield.
25. Disconnect the accelerator cable and speed control cable (if equipped).
26. Remove the nut from the accelerator control cable bracket.
27. Remove the nut from the accelerator control cable bracket and position the accelerator control cable and bracket assembly aside.
28. Remove the nut and position the power steering tube and bracket aside.
29. Disconnect the vacuum supply tube and position aside.
30. Disconnect the fuel vapor return tube and retainer and position aside.
31. Disconnect the vacuum reservoir tube and position aside.
32. Disconnect the fuel supply tube and position aside.
33. Detach the electrical connector retainers.
34. Disconnect the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) electrical connectors. Remove the nut and position the harness aside.
35. Remove the bolt and detach the ground wire.
36. Remove the two power steering pump bolts.
37. Disconnect the lower radiator hose from the radiator.
38. Disconnect the A/C compressor electrical connector and remove the four bolts. Position the A/C compressor aside and support the compressor with a length of mechanics wire.
39. Disconnect the power steering pressure (PSP) sensor electrical connector.
40. Remove the bolts and position the power steering pump aside.
41. Remove the front roll restrictor bolt and the two bolts for the engine support crossmember.
42. Remove the rear nut and the engine support crossmember.
43. Remove the two transaxle-to-engine bolts.
44. Remove the two transaxle-to-engine bolts.
45. Using the special tools, secure the engine to the lift table.
46. Remove the engine mount bracket bolt.
47. Remove the nuts and the engine mount bracket.
48. Remove the bolt from the transaxle rear mount.
49. Remove the bolt from the left transaxle mount.
50. Lower the engine and transaxle from the vehicle.
51. Using the engine crane and spreader bar remove the engine and transaxle from the lift table.
52. Remove the starter motor isolator.
53. Remove and discard the four torque converter nuts.
54. Remove the remaining six engine-to-transaxle bolts and separate the engine and transaxle.
Last edited by Dark_Passenger on April 24th, 2015, 8:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby Dark_Passenger - April 24th, 2015, 7:34 pm

Here are a few pictures of the process. Like I said, an engine swap is pretty straight forward so I didn't take a lot of pictures of the step by step process

The donor 2.0 motor
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thought it was almost ready to pull, still needed more room

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Image

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Almost there!!!!
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that stupid counter weight on the back was holding it up
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Success for step 1, engine and tranny are out
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Empty engine bay woohoo!

Image
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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby Dark_Passenger - April 24th, 2015, 8:03 pm

Now for the "meat and potatoes"....... Here are the main things I found that need to be swapped in order to make the 2.0 work


1. Intake Manifold

The intake from the 2.0 will not work in the Escape. There are sensors on the E's intake that the 2.0's does not have. Don't be an idiot like me and figure this out AFTER the new motor is in the car. It is best to do all the swapping while both motors are out of the vehicle. With swapping the intake comes a new challenge. The water pump outlet nipple on the 2.0 is sitting at an angle that will not allow the 2.3 intake to bolt on correctly. You can bend it however you choose but here is what I did. Take a rubber mallet and lightly tap the nipple so it spins towards the block. Get it as close as you can but leave enough room to get the hose on.

Here is a picture of what I am talking about

Image



2. Cylinder head temp sensor

The head temp sensor's have different plugs on each motor (at least for the '08 2.0, earlier years may use the same one). The sensor in the 2.0 will work with the Escape's ECU but you must swap the connector from the 2.0. I did this by cutting the wires and crimping the 2.0's connector onto the Escapes wiring loom.

3. Fuel rail

The 2.0 fuel rail does not have a fuel pressure sensor built into it. You can either just use the whole fuel rail, injectors and all, from the 2.3 or swap the 2.0's injectors onto the 2.3's. I had to swap injectors because I broke 2 of the 2.3 injectors while uninstalling.

4. Oil filter housing

The 2.3 has an oil cooler built into the oil filter housing. It would be wise to use this on the 2.0 since you are running a smaller motor in a bigger car than it was designed for. I had to use the 2.0's filter housing because the 2.3's was cracked (I believe this is what may have caused my engine failure, oil was pouring out of the filter housing). I plan to install a remote oil cooler in the near future. Make sure to get a new gasket for the housing ($12 at autozone). If you do use the 2.0's filter housing, swap the 2.3 oil pressure sensor because the 2.0's will not work with the Escape's ECU and you will have an oil pressure light on.

5. Camshaft position sensor

The '08 motor uses a different camshaft than the '06. The difference is the timing teeth that the sensor used to pick up the timing. You can swap the camshafts by getting the timing kit for the 2.3 motor and setting it at TDC. Then swap out the camshafts and it should be all good. I did not discover this until everything was installed and I was ready to fire it up. I used the 2.3 camshaft sensor in the 2.0 motor and everything seems to run just fine but I have a pending engine code for the camshaft sensor. I took the E out post-swap for a 40 mile drive and it never skipped a beat so I may just have to deal with a check engine light being on in the future.

6. Passenger side halfshaft mounting bracket

There is a bracket on the back of the 2.3's block that the halfshaft mounts to. Don't forget to swap this onto the 2.3.




Other than that, everything was plug and play. I didn't even have to shim the motor mounts woohoo. If you have any question please feel free to ask. If I think of anything else I will edit the write up.


I will have a video up soon of the post-swap engine running
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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby Dark_Passenger - April 25th, 2015, 1:28 am

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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby escape05xls - April 25th, 2015, 4:26 pm

holy crap dude. Awesome work! Thank you for posting such detailed info, pictures and movie!!!

:beer: :wave:
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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby Dark_Passenger - April 25th, 2015, 6:25 pm

Thanks man. I put a lot of work researching all of this and nobody has written about what engines can swap into the 4cyl E's. I would love for someone else to be able to save some $$$ if they need a new motor. I couldn't believe the price difference in the motors!


Just a little update. I took the E out for a run through the mountains here in Colorado (Garden of the Gods/Pikes Peak area) and she didn't miss a beat. I swapped the oil pressure sensor and the light went away. However, the CEL is on and the code is for the camshaft position sensor. The performance of the engine has not slacked at all and the fuel economy is still awesome (even for driving up a mountain) so I am not too worried about it. To get the CEL to turn off would require me to swap the camshafts which would be another huge project in and of itself (I should have done it when the engines were out). I also had another idiot moment.....I forgot to put on the nuts that hold the passenger side half shaft to the bracket. I noticed a metal on metal grinding and thought maybe I had bent the brake rotor shield and it was contacting the rotor. Luckily it was just the metal housing that protects the half shaft bearing that was scraping and the shaft didnt pop off the bracket and out of the transmission
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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby Linna - April 26th, 2015, 9:38 pm

This is definitely :rockon: that you were able to pull it off !
Drivers who live in visual inspection/smog check states couldn't pass with a CEL and different engine. The 2.3L engine was rated for 153hp, the 2.0L was 140hp. Careful if you try this one at home!
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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby Dark_Passenger - April 27th, 2015, 10:58 am

Unfortunately for me, the only reason I have the CEL on is because I grabbed an engine that was too new lol. If I had gotten the '07 2.0, the camshafts would have shared the same style timing teeth. Thankfully Colorado does not do inspections to register a vehicle. From what I recall living in PA, they do a thorough inspection to register a car so this would not pass as it sits. As far as a visual inspection of the engine, they look exactly the same so they would have to look at numbers on the block to tell. When I had the engines sitting out of the car side by side, my buddy had no idea that they were different sizes. I plan to keep the E for a while since it has 30K on the motor and will hopefully last a while. So maybe one day in the future I will swap the camshafts to sort the CEL out.

As far as the HP difference goes, I haven't noticed the 13hp drop at all. However, it could be that my old engine was on the verge of failure since I started driving the E lol. The 2.0 pulled it up Pikes Peak with zero hesitation and I am actually getting better gas mileage woohoo. I also feel a little better with less HP driving the CD4E since I have read they have a lot of issues.
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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby jim_87 - June 30th, 2015, 8:26 pm

Nice write up, at first I thought you meant a 2.0L ecoboost. :)

I bet you saved alot of cash DIY'ing it yourself. Nice work. :thumb:
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Re: How To: 2005-2008 Engine Swap 2.3L to 2.0L

Postby Dark_Passenger - June 30th, 2015, 9:26 pm

jim_87 wrote:Nice write up, at first I thought you meant a 2.0L ecoboost. :)

I bet you saved alot of cash DIY'ing it yourself. Nice work. :thumb:


Thanks man. Trust me, if I had the resources (a.k.a. $$$) an ecoboost would have gone in lol.


All said and done, it would have cost me around $3,000 to have a shop do a full motor swap for me. I came out spending around $600 (including motor, oils, gaskets/seals, and tools).

Regarding the ecoboost option........soon my Escape will be replaced by something else for my daily driver. I will still keep it, but it is going into my shop to undergo a MAJOR transformation. Don't have a real solid plan yet, but it is going to be one of those projects that when it is done people will just stare into the engine bay and say "Why?!?!"
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