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Discussion Starter #1
So my car has been having misfire codes for a couple weeks now. P0303 Misfire in cylinder 3, its been super rough at idle, shakes the whole damn car, no weird fumes from the exhaust, no discoloration in the oil, and no hesitation of flux in rpms, just a really back rock to it and sounds rough.

Some brief history --> about 2 months ago my radiator cracked on me and it overheated pretty bad. i replaced the radiator and did a full coolant flush. It wasn't but a day or so after all of this that the code popped up and everything started riding rough.

I did a bunch of the troubleshooting that I found on this forum for similar symptoms (spark plugs, wires, ignition coils, injectors, vacuum leaks, PCM reset, crankshaft position sensor, etc.) and nothing helped. I took the valve covers off to see if I had any broken valve springs, bent push rods, etc and everything looked alright.

I finally caved in and took it to a shop, first they did a vacuum test and everything came back ok there, said the valves appeared to all still be seated which is good….BUT then they did a compression test on cylinder 3 and it was only at 45 psi, then they did a scope on it and found out my piston is cracked on cylinder 3, the same cylinder throwing the misfire.

I attached some of the pictures the guy at the shop sent me. The resolution is super low, I will see if he can give me some better pictures this afternoon when I swing by there.

They are wanting $700 just to pull the heads to take a look and confirm the crack and evaluation any other damage. I told them no thanks.

I don't know what to do. Any ideas or suggestions or am I screwed? The car has just over 170k miles on it, so its been around the block a few times.

Any and all feedback would be greatly appreciated!
 

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I'd say he was right.

So now you have to make a decision...have him fix it or button it up and sell it on.
 

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if you live in california and decide on getting rid of it let me know
 

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Discussion Starter #4
That was my fear. I ended up getting it back to the house and just parked it in the driveway for now until I decide what to do with it.

I am thinking of pulling the head myself this weekend and doing some further inspection of the cylinder and head itself to see if there is any additional damage or if it is just the piston.

If it is just the piston, is that something I could just replace myself? Are there any write ups or threads detailing that process?

I really don't want to get rid of this thing yet.

My current thinking is to keep it as a project car, something on the back burner that I can work on at my own leisure and attempt to fix myself, using it as a learning experience at the same time.

Then I would like to find another used LX, either a 300C/300 SRT8 or a Charger SRT8 under 15k to replace it. My thinking is that by replacing it with another one, should something go out like a water pump or radiator or cooling fans, I can always just salvage it from the one in the driveway so long as the parts are compatible.

Does anyone know if there is a fully detailed component comparison or similarity matrix for the 5.7L vs 6.1L anywhere? Would be really helpful to know what all would be transferable.

Any thoughts on this solution? My first car was a 1996 Impala SS with the LT1 and ever since then I have been in love with big body sedans that have some get up and go, I just can't convince myself to drive anything that doesn't have 4 doors and a V8...and until I can afford a Porche Panamera Turbo Executive, these LX's have been great.

Any feedback is greatly appreciated!
 

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Hopefully your learning experience will not involve aggravating your neighbors, and the local authorities, by having a car without a hood in the driveway up on stands!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I guess it's a good thing someone many years ago had a learning experience of their own and came up with the idea of home garages to help with such occasions, so aggravated neighbors and local authorities can mind their own business :)
 
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