Does anyone have any experience with the 2.3L Quad 4, or have any
warnings/suggestions about this engine? I just picked up an Olds for next to
nothing....seems to run well, but it needs a lot of body repair. The first
thing I did was change the spark plugs, and I realized that this engine
seems to be a little unconventional. Post replies to group.
It strongly depends on the year that you have. Before '92 they were
absolutely awful about blowing head gaskets and cracking heads. There
may be updated parts to help prevent this, such as updated water pumps
and oil pumps, which failed often causing the head issues. Which also is
very costly on these. The SOHC is far worse also than the DOHC.
'93 and up saw beefed up heads with new cooling lines to better
circulate fluid in the heads.
I myself own a '95, which is both a "transitional" engine between 2.3L
and 2.4L, and the last official 2.3L. More or less though, it's really a
2.3L like all the others. Balance shafts being the biggest change.
I've modified mine and it's been driven pretty hard. I've kept up all
maintenance though which really helps. I'm up to just over 129,000 miles
and I've had to replace the flexplate. Which is probably mostly my
fault. The timing chain, which is very long, and has nylon gears, which
wear out faster. That's not specific to this engine either. Many others
including V6's suffer this problem. And the alternator, which I must
just be hard on them because I've never owned a car that didn't need
Other than that, nothing to note. Starts, and runs great, doesn't use
oil, great mileage, good power. I've had good experiences, though you
will probably hear about a lot of bad ones.
There are no "nylon" gears in any of the Quad engines. At
least no gears that have anything to do with the timing
chain. You may be thinking of the oil pump which did
have a fibre gear and they were known to strip the teeth
off that gear, but usually there was a good reason, such
as coolant contamination in the oil, which caused the
oil pump to sieze, as a result...the crank gear would
shear off the teeth of the oil pump's fibre gear.
It took me a little bit of remembering when the mechanic had my chain
off, but you are right, they weren't nylon. They did get replaced
though. I think they said just that the chain is so long, they wear out.
Or wear the "shoe" out on the tensioner. I think that is where my
problem really was.
That's too bad if they replaced the sprockets. I've never seen
any sprockets on the Quads that were worn enough to consider
replacing. Perhaps the nylon parts that they were referring to
were the chain guides and the tensioner shoe. These parts are
fibre/nylon. Unfortunately, to the un-initiated....the chain guides
will "appear" as though they are worn out, when really....the grooves
in them are there right from brand new.
Keep an eye on the oil, the second it starts to look milky, change the head
gasket. and head. put a new water pump on it now. If the water pump locks up
it will take the timing chain with it. Put a 180 t-stat in it, these engine
The ignition module wiring is kinda wierd, it has a tendancy to rub on the
transmission and ground out, re locate the wiring to keep it up off the
Since your engine runs good and the body is bad, find another car with a
blown q4. They are as common as flys in the summer, and do an engine swap.
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