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5.3 into a 4.8?

This is a discussion on 5.3 into a 4.8? within the GM Trucks forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; I have a 2002 Silverado with a 4.8L at 176k miles. Truck is in fantastic shape, it was my grandads, ...

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    2001 3.8 Black - sold
    2000 SS Black M6

    5.3 into a 4.8?

    I have a 2002 Silverado with a 4.8L at 176k miles.

    Truck is in fantastic shape, it was my grandads, but the ole 4.8 is getting a little tired, and I'm wondering if, when it gives up, how hard would it be to replace it with a 5.3

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    Former Mopar Man 2002ssslp's Avatar
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    02 Camaro SS, 04 GTO

    No trouble at all. Everything should match up fine including the transmission and mounts. How about going with a 6.0
    My ride is a 2002 Camaro SS SLP #3296 with 30k, LTH, 3" Y, CME, Frost tune, K&N, ported TB, Blackwing lid, Bellows, MSD, Denso Iridium, and 85mm MAF, Bilsteins, Eibach springs, SLP strut brace, Adj. Panhard, TA Girdle, UMI, Pro 5.0, Nitto NT555
    My wife has a 2004 GTO with the rare SAP, 18" wheels, K&N Cold Air System, MSD, Ported TB, Frost tune, Denso Iridium, Flowmaster cat-back, 3200 Yank, 75k

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    Moderator Cutlass's Avatar
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    1999 Formula WS6 M6-sold
    2001 Silverado Z71

    It should be 100% bolt in easy. Its the exact same engine externally so everything will swap over (ie starter, alternator, AC, Power steering, etc). You'll just want to have the PCM reprogrammed for a 5.3 engine, because it probably won't run correctly on the 4.8 calibration.

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    2001 3.8 Black - sold
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    The tuning was my biggest concern, would it drive period on the 4.8 tune, or would it be easiest to just buy a 5.3 PCM.


    As far as the 6.0 goes, that's more truck than I need, this truck is 90% my wifes, and its a half ton, to really utilize a 6.0 I'd have to beef of the suspension. Its pretty much a DD for my wife, that I use to haul stuff around once in awhile.

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    Moderator Cutlass's Avatar
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    1999 Formula WS6 M6-sold
    2001 Silverado Z71

    I bet it would probably drive with the 4.8 tune, but its hard to say for sure. the 4.8 and 5.3 has the exact same computer, just the software inside is calibrated differently.
    Buying a 5.3 computer probably won't work because of the anti-theft security system programmed into them. You'd plug in the 5.3 computer and the truck wouldn't start because it has the wrong VIN and security password in it from the previous truck.
    But don't worry about the tuning aspect. That's a piece of cake for any tuner or anyone with HPtuners or EFILive to do. It should be easy and relatively inexpensive to find someone to do that.

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    maybe, the nearest tuner that i know of is about 50 miles from me.

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    Moderator Cutlass's Avatar
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    1999 Formula WS6 M6-sold
    2001 Silverado Z71

    Well then...no brainer. Done deal there. Its good to live in Texas. Makes these swaps easier then pie.

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    Your dealership guy konigandy6's Avatar
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    Mail order tunes I assume would work.

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    2001 3.8 Black - sold
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    Thanks for the input, i personally have never swapped an engine, but I wouldn't think it'd be too hard, especially not on a truck with plenty of room to work, ive got friends with an engine lift and the experience.

    The 4.8 is the ONLY thing I don't like about this truck, otherwise I love it, waited 10 years to buy it from my uncle, the original owner. But the only way I could justify the swap is if/when the 4.8 gives up, and granted I have the means to do the swap...I may go ahead and buy a 5.3 if i get the chance so itll be on hand, lol

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    2001 3.8 Black - sold
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    2000 Chevy Sierra Vin "T" 5 3L Engine with 83K Miles | eBay

    is this what i would need? I'm really not educated on the truck engines.

  11. #11
    Moderator Cutlass's Avatar
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    1999 Formula WS6 M6-sold
    2001 Silverado Z71

    Yep. That would work.

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    '02 WS.6 / '07 Suburban

    Not sure of the designations, but some 5.3's come equipped with Displacement on Demand (DOD) and/or Flex Fuel. Not sure how that would impact the swap if OP ended up with one of those engines.

  13. #13
    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    2001 3.8 Black - sold
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    i dont think that came out for several more years. Just for piece of mind, I would by an engine that got pulled from a similar year/ model

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