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Video: How to Identify LS Engine Blocks in 5 Steps

Learn how to identify particular LS engine blocks in five easy steps by watching the latest Summit Racing Quick Flicks video!

Properly identifying the generation of your engine block is the first step in any LS engine swap project and will help you hone in on the parts and engine-related tools you will need to compete the job.

Check it out!

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23 Comments

  1. What kind of motor is in a 2002 4×4 Chevrolet siveradoextended cab

    • OnAllCylinders says:

      If it is a eight-cylinder, it would be a 4.8 or 5.3L, depending on the bed size.

    • John Davis says:

      I have a 2010 Chevy Silverado Texas Edition 2 Wheel Drive with the 5.3 engine. I totaled three truck and bought a 2001 Chevy Silverado Z71 Extended Cab 4Door with the 5.3 LS engine. My question off I’m wanting to put their 2010 engine in my 2001 and I’m wondering if it will run right or what ask will I need to swap with the engine. Computer, Throttle Body, Wire Harness etc? Thank you in advance for your help. John Davis

  2. great video

  3. DJ Wilson says:

    Good info. Bid Tee-Shirt

  4. I’m confused: you’re saying a 1955 Chevrolet Gen I small block V8 is an LS1? I thought Gen I was just the first generation Chevy small block, Gen II had the designation LT (ie. LT-1, LT-4), and the LS designation didn’t come into being until Gen III and continues into Gen IV…

    • whats bad is there is some major differences between the 1955 / 56 / 57 engine versus the newer ones, like no provision for oil filter, no side engine mount mounted from front, & my favorite, special groove in camshaft, to supply oiling, so have to have that machined into custom cam if not buying original for those years everything was standardized by 58? but then you have small journal rods, and crank, on pre 67 engines, & 68 newer has medium journal even if same displacement, & not even discussing the 400 with even larger journals, shorter rods & steam holes in pistons.

      I was just browsing as I want to learn the LS & play with one.

  5. OnAllCylinders says:

    Marcus, you are correct the Gen I is just the first generation small block (1955-98). LS engines are typically known as Gen III or Gen IV. In addition to comparing Gen III and Gen IV LS engines, the video also folds in some information on the traditional Gen I small block to help you differentiate the old school block from the newer Gen III/IV LS engines. This can be helpful when scouting out an engine for an engine swap.

  6. Now do the heads. Like the old double hump on gen1. The secrets to LS heads.

  7. This is a confusing video. I was under the impression sbc Gen I = 1955-2002-ish with the major change of 2 piece to 1 piece rear main seal/ roller cam option in ’87, and vortech head design starting in 1996.
    Gen II = LTx motors from the Camaro/Corvette’s that ran from 92 (vetted)/93 (camaro) 1997. They had the front opti spark ignition, aluminum heads and reverse flow coolant system.
    Gen III = LSx from 1997 (vette)/1998 (camaro) to present. It has a total redesign of the block, with the lifter valley in the block like your video (almost looks like an old flat head), and the massive main bearing support structure.
    I thought I was going to watch a video on the Gen III LSx differences. I know there are several, from the iron to aluminum, vette to truck versions of the block.

    To anyone reading this, I do know, we can’t just call them LTx or LSx. The terms, as far as Chevrolet is concerned, are like calling a student a freshman or a senior, these terms alone do not indicate whether the student is in grade school or college. (ex. The 2015 vette motor, the new direct injection monster, is being called an LTx.)

  8. laura wells says:

    What does the cam sensor look like on a generation 3 on the back of the motor

  9. Pingback: ICT Billet LS Swap Accessories to Complete Your Engine Swap

  10. How do you use 24x parts in a gen lv block

  11. will gen 5 ls heads work on gen 3? basically, will the heads off of a 5.3l out of a 2016 chevy 1500 work on a 5.3l out of a 2000 chevy 1500?

  12. Rick Leslie says:

    I’d be really interested in which block as far as where the engine mounts are located would be a good swap from a LE5 4 cylinder to a LS in a 2007 Saturn Sky. Also I already have a T56 6 Speed in the car. Great video also.

  13. can i put a 2003 ls 6.0 motor into a 2008 chevy truck if so what all do i need to change to make it work

    • OnAllCylinders Staff says:

      Hey Dusty, the short answer is yes. Externally, all LS engines are almost identical–save for things like driven accessories and fans. 2008 Chevy trucks were also available with LS engines from the factory, so we know there’s room in the engine bay.
      The big question that will affect you swap is determining what engine you have (Your 2003 LS 6.0L could be an LQ4 or LQ9.) You’ll also need to figure out what engine your 2008 truck had, e.g. V6 or one of the LS family motors, like an LY5, LC9, LY2, etc.
      If you’re mulling over a swap, check out this story, it’s a great starting point and is chock-full of links to other LS-related articles that’ll probably come in handy.

  14. Anyone who can crack this engine block casting number:
    12561163

  15. Richard Pugh says:

    Can a front wheel drive gen 4 ls engine be used in a rear wheel drive swap?

    • Hey Richard. Thanks for reading. Here’s the thing though: With enough time and money, anything’s possible. BUT! Considering how cheap LS engines are, it’d probably be much faster, easier, and cheaper to just pluck a fresh RWD LS engine from a yard. For starters, the FWD LS4 uses a transaxle and different engine mounts, so you’d have to work around that. Read this for more details on the LS4.

  16. The date code in the video ‘D246’, you indicated it was a 2006 block. How do you know it is not a 1996 or 2016 block?

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