Gm 5.3

Thread starter #1

4HAND

Senior Member
Opinions on longevity of GM's 5.3 engine?

Looking at buying a truck & found a 2012 Chevy 4x4 crew that's a very nice truck. However, it does have 135,000 miles on it.
I don't put a lot of miles on a truck, but have never bought a truck with over 100K miles.

Just wondering about longevity.
 

rjcruiser

Senior Member
I have an 08 GMC Yukon with 150k on the 5.3AFM engine. Biggest thing with the AFM is oil usage. Mine burns about 2 quarts ever 10k miles. Some burn a lot more than that.

No issues to date with the motor. Run Mobil 1 and change oil every 10k miles. When I drive, get close to 17-18. When the wife drives, 14-15 :(
 

IIICrkRepr

Senior Member
I have an 07 with 235k miles, a lot of it highway. It will burn a quart between every oil change. Engine is still strong.
 
I have a 2000 with 257000 on it burns about 1 1/2 quarts between oil changes every 5k miles would drive it across the country without thinking about it.
 

GoldDot40

Senior Member
I changed the cylinder heads on my 2002 5.3 at about 140K miles. The cylinders still had the cross hatch markings...which means viritually little to no wear. Part of replacing heads includes new gaskets on the entire top end...including the intake manifold. Went ahead and did the water pump while I had it apart that far. I'm confident another 200+K miles would be easily achieved with this engine.

They are extremely well engineered/designed with a substantial oiling system and good power per cubic inch. Some of the earlier models were prone to cracked heads...which was a design flaw with the supplier that was casting them for GM. That issue has long since been addressed. Other than that, maintain it like you're supposed to and you can really rack up some miles on one.

Most notorious issue with most 1/2 ton GM trucks is the transmission. They have a couple of weak links that are easily addressed with a proper rebuild. Mine failed at 149K and I had a beefed up unit built for me that will handle some moderate abuse. Other than that, hub assemblies...which most trucks on the road today with need replacing sooner or later.
 

joey1919

Senior Member
Best truck I ever had was an 02 gmc with 5.3. I was 19 when I bought it. Drove it hard, lots of farm miles and towing, sold it to a friend after 189,000 miles. He drove it to about 310k. Sold to a guy down the road a couple years ago and its still going, has had transmission work but same motor
 

transfixer

Senior Member
I've got a 2000 Silverado that is bumping 300k , still runs like a top, goes through a quart of oil every 3500 miles or so, the 5.3's were great engines, until they started the Active Fuel Management crap in 07, since then a lot of them, if not most, have had lifter issues, which will cause the engine to lose compression on whichever cylinder the lifter collapses on, a few people that install tuners on the trucks, choose to deactivate the AFM in the computer , and like the truck much better.

Around 07 or 08 Gm started using the 6L80e transmission in those trucks, the 2012 will almost surely have the 6L80e in it, do some research on it so you will know what you're getting into, those units are not turning out to be as durable as the previous transmissions, and are more expensive to fix.
 

Gaducker

Senior Member
If you have an ls using oil have the valve cover mod done to the drivers side valve cover and that will stop. Its not burning oil its sucking it back out the top of the valve cover because its not returning fast enough.
 
Thread starter #10

4HAND

Senior Member
Spoke to one of my nephews yesterday. He has a 2011 Chevy Silverado with 170K on it. has had no issues & said he would go anywhere in it.
 

yellowfin

Senior Member
I have an 08 ltz z71. Been great so far. I got an insert called Range to stop the AFM. Hopefully that will make things last a little longer. Runs V8 all the time. i am at 149k. replaced brakes and door locks. Trans is ok, knock on wood.
 
I have a 2011 Silverado with the 5.3. It has about 86K on it right now, and so far so good. I have used a tuner to turn off the active fuel management-I didn't like the way it drove with the AFM in service. Can't complain.
 
The 5.3's from 2007 up to 2013 use oil and wear cam lobes and the AFM lifters collapse! If you buy a Range Performance cylinder deactivator and install it in the DLC connector you can eliminate these problems. Doing the valve cover swap and installing the deflector in the pan is only a patch. Trust me I have worked for GM the last 35 years.
 

mark-7mag

Senior Member
I also use the "Range cyl deactivator" on my 2015 . It's full time V8.
 

Wycliff

Senior Member
Yep, great motors as long as you deactivate the AFM, I went through 2 sets of lifters before 125000 miles. Now that I did a DOD delete and a reprogramming I should be good for another 300000
 

95g atl

Senior Member
I have 198,000 on my 5.3 tahoe. The LS engines (4.8,5.3,6.0) can use oil between oil changes. My tahoe tells me when it is a quart low on the dash warning system, so I don't have to check it between gas fill ups.

I have seen a Tahoe at auction with 335,000 miles and still bring very good $$$$.
I have heard of other 5.3's going for 500,000 miles without ever being opened up.

Great engines in my opinion. Like everything else, so long as the engine was maintained, you should not have issues. Pull the oil fill cap and see if there is sludge and such inside the engine and on the cap. See if oil change receipts are available.

I would be more concerned about the TRANSMISSION than I would the engine. ;)
 

95g atl

Senior Member
ONE MORE THING: yes, great advise on the deactivation. Mine is pre-era of that, so no worries.

these GM engines respond VERY well to a custom tuner. Night and Day difference...........
 
I've had several GM 5.3's over the years & never - not once had any issues. I worked at a GM plant & traded trucks often as employees got really attractive discounts & we did not have to haggle with the dealer about price. However I never drove one long enough to put high mileage on it. On average I probably traded most some where around 20 to 25,000 miles. The most miles I ever put on one was around 41,000. Never bought a set of tires for any of the Silverados I've owned. Kept them clean & good shape & beat around the farm in an older 4 cylinder clunker. I know quite a few folks that put high mileage on them with good results. I may or may not trade the one I currently have as I done got old. Good luck.
 

K80Shooter

Senior Member
I have an 08 GMC Yukon with 150k on the 5.3AFM engine. Biggest thing with the AFM is oil usage. Mine burns about 2 quarts ever 10k miles. Some burn a lot more than that.

No issues to date with the motor. Run Mobil 1 and change oil every 10k miles. When I drive, get close to 17-18. When the wife drives, 14-15 :(
I have a 08 Chevy with this engine, it has 212,000 on it and it does not use a drop of oil between oil changes. I do use synthetic oil though and change it every 4,000 miles. Other than replacing the plugs once nothing has been done to it.
 
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