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Old 01-27-2019, 02:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Crankshaft fix J20A

So everywhere I look these J20A motor suffer spinning bearings and crankshaft damage.

Has anyone come up with a solution yet?
Is it a simple matter of using bearings with the oil slot perhaps?
Do the crankshaft oil holes need enlarging and chamfering - particularly #4 cylinder if not all of them?
Perhaps an uprated oil pump to deliver more flow? Or is the oil pump pressure already too high causing the bearing to float?
Is there some machining to the rod journals and a different set of bearings from another motor that locates the bearings more solidly?

Surely after all these years of rebuilding these motors someone has come up with a solution - it seems to be such a common complaint. The Suzuki used parts and used engine listings are littered with notes of crankshaft requires regrinding/spun bearings.
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Old 01-27-2019, 03:13 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Where exactly is it you're finding these reports of spun bearings & damaged crankshafts?

The J20A motor has been around for over twenty years (in fact, one of the two I have is over twenty years old and still going strong), and I don't recall hearing any one raise this issue - they do have a bit of a bad reputation where the timing chains are concerned, but I believe that is caused by neglected maintenance, and possibly the use of the wrong oil filter.
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Last edited by fordem; 01-27-2019 at 03:20 PM.
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Old 01-27-2019, 04:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordem View Post
Where exactly is it you're finding these reports of spun bearings & damaged crankshafts?

The J20A motor has been around for over twenty years (in fact, one of the two I have is over twenty years old and still going strong), and I don't recall hearing any one raise this issue - they do have a bit of a bad reputation where the timing chains are concerned, but I believe that is caused by neglected maintenance, and possibly the use of the wrong oil filter.
Its all through many forums including this one. Look through the performance forums at people doing their own rebuilds and well over half of them are because of spun bearings prompting them to do a rebuild and do some performance mods at the same time. Look at a lot of the newbies contemplating buying a J20A motored suzuki but were worried about the poor reputation for spinning bearings. Look at the cheap motors on ebay or gumtree and they all mention having to have the crankshaft reground because of spun bearings.

Its extremely common on these J20A motors and you've got Suzuki blinkers on if you think otherwise.

The other problem (easier fix) is timing chain and tensioner issues.
Otherwise, great little engines and my daughter loves her 2009 SX4.

But I'm in the position of the original motor spinning its #4 bearing at 120,000klms and now its second motor having the timing chain tensioner fail, rattling away like crazy, and the oil pressure light coming on/off indicating the tensioner has popped out or the valve behind it having failed and the oil just gushing past it. It used oil anyway at nearly 1/2 litre every 2,500 klms so if I'm going to repair this second motor, I'll do a rebuild.
ie: I don't want to throw more good money after bad by reconditioning one or the other motor and have the motor spin a bearing again in 1, 6, 12 or 24 months time. Hence me asking if anyone has come across a fix I can employ with confidence.

PS: First engine serviced exclusively by authorised Suzuki Dealer - every service and the correct shell synthetic oil used. Second motor was flushed, new filters etc and also only run synthetic oil. Its lasted about 1.5 years/15,000klms but the motor had supposedly only done 105,000klms which I now doubt.
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Old 01-27-2019, 05:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I've had a couple spin bearings due to lack of oil pressure causing "pickup" and wear on the rear main when starting which has led to failures. Apart from that, its people trying to do stupid things with them that are causing issues I think. Castrol GTX 5W-30 is what I run, and recommend to the customers I do work for.
Nothing against the other brand, but I have never liked it as an oil in these engines. 10W40 is a common oil people use, and this can cause problems.

If the oil lights flashing, don't run it. If you do, then you're asking for trouble. #4 bearing will be the first to lose oil and you know what happens then.
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Old 01-27-2019, 06:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I did do a google search after I posted, and found maybe two forum threads, one of which was in this forum, and in that one I asked the same question - so I remain unconvinced that there is an issue with repeated failures - feel free to provide links to "all the many forums" you've found it in.

Every dead J20 I've seen personally has been cam chain related and directly traceable to poor maintenance.

@2013GV - I want to suggest that as you're pouring that GTX in, watch what happens as you near the bottom of the container, I've had several where the oil changes from that "liquid gold" to a darker brown - it's either forming a sludge whilst in storage, or the additives are separating out & settling - I quit using it and went with Valvoline instead.
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Old 01-27-2019, 08:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordem View Post
I did do a google search after I posted, and found maybe two forum threads, one of which was in this forum, and in that one I asked the same question - so I remain unconvinced that there is an issue with repeated failures - feel free to provide links to "all the many forums" you've found it in.

Every dead J20 I've seen personally has been cam chain related and directly traceable to poor maintenance.

@2013GV - I want to suggest that as you're pouring that GTX in, watch what happens as you near the bottom of the container, I've had several where the oil changes from that "liquid gold" to a darker brown - it's either forming a sludge whilst in storage, or the additives are separating out & settling - I quit using it and went with Valvoline instead.
Sorry, but I don't think you tried very hard.

The Engine Failure Thread [Archive] - Club SX4 *huge list!

Custom Engine Swap *very first line!

https://www.gumtree.com.au/s-ad/capa...ble/1207683145

https://www.suzuki-forums.com/suzuki...-failures.html

By macsavers
on 09/24/11 14:10 PM (PDT)
When we neared the 90,000 mark, we started to hear a knock in the engine. We couldn't figure it out for the life of us. We always had the oil changed regularly and had regular maintenance, but the mechanic couldn't make out what was wrong and told us to ignore it. Well, a few thousand miles later, we couldn't ignore it any longer... it threw a rod. We had it towed back to Suzuki and the mechanic said "Huh, so that's was was rattling." He told us the engine would have to be completely rebuilt.

https://www.gumtree.com.au/s-ad/cann...ine/1178681475
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Old 01-28-2019, 12:37 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordem View Post
I did do a google search after I posted, and found maybe two forum threads, one of which was in this forum, and in that one I asked the same question - so I remain unconvinced that there is an issue with repeated failures - feel free to provide links to "all the many forums" you've found it in.

Every dead J20 I've seen personally has been cam chain related and directly traceable to poor maintenance.

@2013GV - I want to suggest that as you're pouring that GTX in, watch what happens as you near the bottom of the container, I've had several where the oil changes from that "liquid gold" to a darker brown - it's either forming a sludge whilst in storage, or the additives are separating out & settling - I quit using it and went with Valvoline instead.
yep, seen that in the 4 and 5 litre packs, i'm using about 200 litres a week out of bulk drums. I always make sure a 4 litre pack is mixed well before using it. Its the additives separating and most oils will do it over time if left in the plastic packs. Less so in metal drums. Valvoline is ridiculously expensive here if trying to get it in bulk, I could stock it, but the dealerships i do service work for specify the GTX, so thats what I stock.
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Last edited by 2013GV; 01-28-2019 at 12:47 AM.
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Old 01-28-2019, 12:55 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ss2115 View Post

By macsavers
on 09/24/11 14:10 PM (PDT)
When we neared the 90,000 mark, we started to hear a knock in the engine. We couldn't figure it out for the life of us. We always had the oil changed regularly and had regular maintenance, but the mechanic couldn't make out what was wrong and told us to ignore it. Well, a few thousand miles later, we couldn't ignore it any longer... it threw a rod. We had it towed back to Suzuki and the mechanic said "Huh, so that's was was rattling." He told us the engine would have to be completely rebuilt.
reading this I would have thought any decent mechanic would have gotten a stethoscope out and listened, you can't blame failure on lack of diagnosis and an engine that you know is knocking and don't investigate the cause.

you will always get the ones that have failures complaining, very rarely will you hear from the thousands, if not millions by now of J20 owners that haven't had an issue.
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"Dogs feel very strongly that they should always go with you in the car, in case the need should arise for them to bark violently at nothing right in your ear."
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Old 01-28-2019, 02:49 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2013GV View Post
reading this I would have thought any decent mechanic would have gotten a stethoscope out and listened, you can't blame failure on lack of diagnosis and an engine that you know is knocking and don't investigate the cause.

you will always get the ones that have failures complaining, very rarely will you hear from the thousands, if not millions by now of J20 owners that haven't had an issue.
I see. So rather than taking the point that the yet another rod bearing had spun, you've chosen to blame the mechanic for not diagnosing something that was already on the way out whether he was being responsible or not.

As i stated - Suzuki Blinkers.

I had hoped to obtain some useful information to assist me regarding a rebuild or not, but it seems you are in denial rather than face that the internet is scattered with references to Suzuki spun bearings and damaged crankshafts.
Sorry if the truth hurts.
Doesn't seem like this forum is as helpful as I had thought it might be.
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Old 01-28-2019, 07:40 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by ss2115 View Post
Sorry, but I don't think you tried very hard.
So you came up with a grand total of three forum threads and two classifieds where someone is selling used engine parts, one with a "damaged crank" and no further details - seems it's not so many after all.

Let me ask you this question - can you find at least one documented instance of a spun bearing on a J20a in an Escudo/Tracker/Vitara/Grand Vitara?

Does the problem affect all J20a engines or only the transverse mounted ones? Does this relate to the shape and/or capacity of the oil pan, the location of the pump pickup, the lack of a baffle or windage tray - in short are you looking in the right place?
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