I am looking for engines to use in my pick up truck. I know that the engine I have is also in other GM/Chevrolet vehicles. What vehicle models and year ranges should I be looking for in terms of a replacement and/or swap?

Various specifications found in my owners manual are below.

  • Year: 2002
  • Make: Chevrolet Silverado
  • Model: 1500 Regular Cab Pickup
  • Engine: Vortec 4300 (automatic)
  • Type: V6 4.3L
  • Vin Code: W

I found this wiki page, but I am not 100% sure what I have. I do understand these vehicles are potential candidates for having the same engine. However I do not know the compatible dates ranges for an engine swap.

Other models with same engine (unclear on swap-able date ranges):

  • Chevrolet Silverado
  • Chevrolet Express
  • Chevrolet Astro vans
  • Chevrolet Blazer
  • Chevrolet S-10 (2WD)
  • Chevrolet S-10 (4WD)

The engine needs to be swapped due to possibility of a cracked head or damaged head gasket. Engine oil and coolant has been mixed. Any and all help would be greatly appreciated!

  • Just as a note, any of the GMC variant which align with the Chevrolets will have the same engine (ie: Silverado=Sierrra; Express=Vandura; Astro=Safari; etc.). You can be assured, any Vortec V6 4.3L from 2002 will work. I believe 2002 was the ending year before GM started doing something new. I don't have good date ranges for you or I'd write an answer, so leaving as a comment. Apr 12, 2017 at 19:16
  • Neither of those are compelling reasons to replace an entire engine. If it hasn't badly overheated or given you some other massive failure sign, replacing a head gasket is far less expensive than swapping an engine.
    – Zshoulders
    Apr 12, 2017 at 19:55
  • Given the list of possible donor vehicles, sourcing a replacement head should not be difficult either, if your assumption that it is cracked is correct.
    – Solar Mike
    Apr 12, 2017 at 21:02
  • Unfortunately coolant is inside the engine and has mixed with oil, creating a think mustard looking paste. Pulling the oil dipstick reveals the damage. I can not say for certain if the block is cracked. The motor has been sitting up for about 10 months with the water/oil mixed. My father says replacing the gasket is easy, yes, but the oil and coolant are already inside the engine. He believes swapping the engine at an auto salvage yard would be our best bet. What are your opinions? I sincerely appreciate all your advice and help! Apr 12, 2017 at 21:56
  • It depends what has happened in the events leading up to the coolant mixing with the oil. A leaking headgasket would give you the mustard, and all it would need to fix is a new headgasket and an engine oil flush. What was happening to it before it stopped getting driven?
    – Zshoulders
    Apr 12, 2017 at 22:43


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