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Warning! Blueprint Engines warranty complaint

jojo1590

New member
Joined
Aug 17, 2016
Messages
4
Location
SC
Corvette
1986 Coupe
This is a warning to stay away from Blueprint engines. In summary, Blueprint Engines did not honor their labor commitment in their warranty. Blueprint engines did not communicate to me in a professional or timely manner; I had to reach out to them every time to get an update.


I purchased a Blueprint engines crate engine (BP35512CT1) from Summit racing in 2015 for my 86 coupe. I went with Blueprint because of the warranty and the horsepower ratings (402hp). I had a professional shop do the entire installation, and made sure that all the installation and break-in procedures were followed. Furthermore, all maintenance procedures have been followed.


When I got the car dynoed by a reputable/esteemed local race shop, the wheel horsepower was much lower than I expected, around 250whp. So a few months later, I got it tuned by another reputable/esteemed race shop, and same thing, wheel horsepower was around 240. I took it to another reputable/esteemed race shop a few months later for a dyno tune, and once again, wheel horsepower was around 240. I had always attributed it to the 700r4 and IRS stealing all the power. I had called Blueprint engines to ask about the lower than expected horsepower and was told that it was because of a “loose converter.”


The last two shops that tuned the engine had both pointed out that engine wasn’t running quite right. I always attributed the rough idling to the cam specs, because AFR, timing, etc. was always on point. The last shop ran a compression test, and cylinders #6 and #8 had 0 compression. That explained the missing 80 horsepower from what I was originally expecting.


I called Blueprint engines to file a warranty claim, explain the situation, and authorize work on the car. Blueprint engines authorized the shop to do the work, so the shop took off the heads and saw a blown head gasket between 6 and 8, as well as two little grooves between the combustion chambers of 6 and 8. The block was undamaged, and the pistons and spark plugs were all in good shape, with no signs of melting or damage. The only damage was in the aluminum head between combustion chambers of cylinders 6 and 8. I did some searching and found that Blueprint Engines uses China head castings. Three separate mechanical engineers, and two separate mechanics told me that the damage was due to either a casting error or improper torque sequencing.


When I spoke with Ken, the warranty rep, on the phone, he explained that Blueprint Engines would ship a new head and a shipping label to return the damaged head back to Blueprint Engines. Ken said that Blueprint Engines would perform an inspection on the head to see what caused the damage.


After waiting with no word from Blueprint Engines for 2 weeks, I called Blueprint Engines and was told that the cylinder head was being built. Blueprint engines sent a new cylinder head 3 weeks after the old head had been removed. That surprised me because they are readily available at Jegs, Summit, etc., so the inventory should have been large enough to ship quickly. The old head was returned to Blueprint Engines. I paid the local shop up front for the labor, and I must give them the highest accolades for their professionalism and service; they were always prompt and great at communicating. I got all of my updates through the local shop, not Blueprint Engines. The local shop called me every step of the way and updated me on their progress, but I had to reach out to Blueprint Engines for any updates at all.


After waiting 3 more weeks after the installation and no word from Blueprint Engines, I called Blueprint Engines for an update. The customer service rep told me that the head had not been inspected, and took a message to have Ken call me back. Ken called me back a few hours later, saying that the part had been inspected. Ken repeatedly called me by the wrong name “Dave”, accused me of negligence, stated that Blueprint Engines will not pay for the labor, and that he hopes that the car was tuned right this time. He directly insulted me by calling me the wrong name while reading my reference file, and also insulted my installation mechanic and all three respectable dyno tuners by saying that it was not tuned correctly in the past. All procedures outlined by Blueprint Engines were followed from the start by ASE certified technicians.


I am disgusted by Blueprint Engines’ quality and service. I purchased their engine because of the warranty and “value”, unfortunately having disregarded others’ previous bad experiences with Blueprint Engines that I had read. I was without my only car for 6 weeks and am left with a bill of almost $1000 because Blueprint Engines did not stand up to their word and did not do the right thing. After this ordeal with Blueprint Engines, I have spent the same amount of money to get a GM crate motor, which would not have had the quality issues that I experienced. Please learn from my ordeal and stay away from Blueprint Engines.
 

dougelam

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 19, 2011
Messages
453
Location
Michigan
Corvette
2002 Roadster
Sorry to hear that you had a bad experience.

Did you get pictures?
Did your tech have an expert opinion?
How many miles?
Tuner receipts?

I went after an aftermarket warranty company and at first was shot down.
Provided them with service records and facts of what happened and then was approved, but not without more problems.
They only approved 6 hours of labor, they were using a Chilton book that was a year and a half out of print.

I argued my case on Improper assembly due to the short time from install to failure
They cannot pay labor based on a time from a book that is out of date
Their warranty contract stated that the use of any licensed facility would be excepted, book time and hourly rate.

Yes I won

DON'T STOP keep on them

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jojo1590

New member
Joined
Aug 17, 2016
Messages
4
Location
SC
Corvette
1986 Coupe
Sorry to hear that you had a bad experience.

Did you get pictures?
Did your tech have an expert opinion?
How many miles?
Tuner receipts?

I went after an aftermarket warranty company and at first was shot down.
Provided them with service records and facts of what happened and then was approved, but not without more problems.
They only approved 6 hours of labor, they were using a Chilton book that was a year and a half out of print.

I argued my case on Improper assembly due to the short time from install to failure
They cannot pay labor based on a time from a book that is out of date
Their warranty contract stated that the use of any licensed facility would be excepted, book time and hourly rate.

Yes I won

DON'T STOP keep on them

Sent from my SM-T530NU using Tapatalk

Thank you, Dougelam. I appreciate your advice.

Yes, pictures were taken and I got as many expert opinions as I could. The three different mechanical engineers with whom I conferred all have engine building experience and two of them race. One was a machinist prior to getting his engineering degrees (BS, MS). The tech who did the head installation used ARP bolts to replace the bolts from Blueprint engines. He specifically commented on the poor quality of the head bolts that were on the engine. Another tech at the same shop said that it was either due to the bolts (improper torque, quality) or a head casting defect, since the pistons, plugs, and block were all in unharmed condition.

The engine had approximately 8,000 miles on it when the above referenced ordeal with Blueprint Engines began. It had approximately 2000 miles on it when I got the first dyno tune and saw the low hp rating. It had been tuned from the start at installation by an ASE master mechanic. The warranty is for 30 months and 50,000 miles.

I have receipts and documentation for everything done to the car.

I am the most concerned with spreading the word to others to prevent them from going through the same debacle, insulting, and shady business practices that I experienced with Blueprint Engines. When Ken called to tell me that they would not honor their labor warranty, he used a blocked number in contrast to previous conversations where he used his company line. After insulting me and my tuners by saying he hoped that it was tuned right this time and we won't have the same problem again, instead of leaving me with his direct line, he gave me the general company number. When I called again to speak with Ken, the operator sent me to Ken's phone line where Ken screened the call and has never returned my call. I have all documentation and references available should Ken ever return my call.

I was always cordial, factual, and never rude in any of the discussions that I had with anyone from the company. When I spoke with another rep and told him that all procedures had been followed from the start, his tone quickly changed and he ended the conversation. I was never asked for any documents or references, but rather ignored.

I hope that if anyone is considering an engine from Blueprint Engines, he/she does not let the fancy horsepower ads and "value" convince him/her to purchase their product. The old saying "you get what you pay for" still holds true. The initial excitement that one may receive is not worth the risk of poor quality and subsequent terrible customer service, where any problems are blamed on the customer for negligence.
 

Vettehead Mikey

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 26, 2003
Messages
3,487
Location
Not that far from Ottawa
Corvette
1973 Coupe
Dave,

I think you'll find that joining a forum strictly to post a one-sided rant will have little effect, barely worth the typing effort. We've heard your side, but not theirs. Have you tried small claims court?
 
Joined
Aug 19, 2016
Messages
5
Location
Kearney, NE
Hey guys, we are not getting on here to argue with anyone, but wanted to share additional information about the failure.

BluePrint Engines supplied a long block – complete through the oil pan and valve covers. We did not supply the engine with an intake, carb, or distributor. The OP or Shop sourced and installed these components on their own. The engine was Dyno tested at our facility prior to shipping to Summit Racing. (add-on components are removed after dyno testing on this specific configuration.)

We received a call from the OP on June 30th 2016. We were told “one of the intake valves was hanging open, causing backfiring through the carb.” After in-field diagnosis, we were told by his shop that two cylinders had 0 compression. On July 6th the shop pulled the head and called to inform us on the failure. They found that the head gasket was blown between 6 and 8. We received pictures and agreed with the shop that fire slotting had occurred. On July 6th we advised the customer that this was likely not going to be covered by warranty, but did offer to send him a replacement head and gaskets at no charge. We did send these out 9 days after we said we would – that is not acceptable by our standards and can understand the customers frustration on that part. We also advised that if we found something other than fire slotting during our inspection, that was a manufacturing or parts defect, we would reimburse his labor bill.

There was a question about the head bolts being torqued properly. Upon inspection we found the gasket armor to measure .042” .0435” around all cylinders, this would indicate that all head bolts were properly torqued and not the cause of failure.

Here is a little data regarding the head gaskets used on this engine configuration. This engine was built with FelPro 501SD head gaskets. These are severe duty gaskets – designed specifically for superior performance and longevity under the toughest conditions. Their increased armor thickness and stainless steel material offer the best resistance to withstand “some” overheat, pre-ignition and detonation. They of course cannot withstand these symptoms for long periods of time. We intentionally designed the engines with an “overkill” head gasket knowing that some customers could have run ability issues if not tuned properly. This was a safety margin we thought was important to add. Gaskets that have failed due to detonation or pre-ignition will usually have cracked armor around the combustion chamber which leads to burn-through. You can see signs of this in the picture the shop provided to us.

Overheat, along with pre-ignition and detonation is one of the most common failures of head gaskets. The engine's cooling system, air/fuel mixture and ignition system all have to be correct to minimize the risks of overheat, pre-ignition and detonation. Unfortunately all of these things were out of our control with this engine.

We hate to see customers have issues with our product. It’s just bad for business. This is why we work with customers on these issues, like offering a replacement head and gaskets – at no cost – on a failure that was caused by something outside of our control. None the less, this post has proven we still have flaws in our system – delays in replacement parts, slow response time, etc… and for that jojo1590 – thank you for helping us be better!

I hope you all consider all the facts before encouraging people not to do business with us.

Thank you for your time.

BluePrint Engines
1.800.483.4263
www.BluePrintEngines.com
 

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dougelam

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 19, 2011
Messages
453
Location
Michigan
Corvette
2002 Roadster
I myself would have looked at the other 2 cylinders to see if they too were starting to show signs of failure!

If evidence of pre-ignition or excessive heat was found then the other head would be coming off for more inspection.

If there was no evidence then I would number the fuel injectors, send them out for flow testing.

It's obvious to me from the picture that cylinder #6 had the problem it's awfully clean yet #8 has way to much build up for a high performance engine!
I'm willing to bet that premium fuel was not used or it was not driven very hard.

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jojo1590

New member
Joined
Aug 17, 2016
Messages
4
Location
SC
Corvette
1986 Coupe
I myself would have looked at the other 2 cylinders to see if they too were starting to show signs of failure!

If evidence of pre-ignition or excessive heat was found then the other head would be coming off for more inspection.

If there was no evidence then I would number the fuel injectors, send them out for flow testing.

It's obvious to me from the picture that cylinder #6 had the problem it's awfully clean yet #8 has way to much build up for a high performance engine!
I'm willing to bet that premium fuel was not used or it was not driven very hard.

Sent from my SM-N920P using Tapatalk

Both heads were removed, and no damage was seen in any of the other cylinders. No damage was seen in any of the pistons, block, or plugs. This engine is carbureted with a 600cfm carburetor and dual plane intake (same combination that Blueprint Engines tests their engines), with a Performance Distributors DUI distributor, so the injectors are not relevant in this case. I have a far beyond adequate cooling system. Nothing less than 93 octane fuel has ever been in the car, and as my only car it was driven normally with both highway and city driving.



" On July 6th we advised the customer that this was likely not going to be covered by warranty, but did offer to send him a replacement head and gaskets at no charge. We did send these out 9 days after we said we would – that is not acceptable by our standards and can understand the customers frustration on that part. We also advised that if we found something other than fire slotting during our inspection, that was a manufacturing or parts defect, we would reimburse his labor bill." This was not made clear. I had to ask if there would be a charge for the head and gaskets, and the labor reimbursement statement was left vague.


Had I known that I would have received the poor customer service and been without my only car for 6 weeks, then I would have paid the shop a prior agreed $900 to repair the head at a local machine shop. The shop was exceptional with all of their service and timeliness, so I would have been without my car for a maximum of 2 weeks. The rate-limiting factor of the return would have been the machine shop's turnaround time, as the shop re-installed the heads within 2 days of receiving the new head from Blueprint engines. Furthermore, had I kept the repair local, I would not have dealt with the insults and shady business practices (Ken calling from a blocked number, insulting me and my tuners, screening my call, and never returning my call) that I experienced with Blueprint engines. The only explanation I ever received is in the above post by Blueprint Engines. It is disgusting that the only details I have received for why Blueprint Engines is not honoring their labor warranty have been via their responses to complaint forums.
 

Mac

Well-known member
Administrator
Joined
Feb 13, 2003
Messages
5,478
Location
Ottawa, Canuckistan
Corvette
1973 coupe L82 (gone as casualty of divorce)
Dave,

I think you'll find that joining a forum strictly to post a one-sided rant will have little effect, barely worth the typing effort. We've heard your side, but not theirs. Have you tried small claims court?

It sounds like Blueprint are still trying to resolve the issue.

Mac
 

Vettehead Mikey

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 26, 2003
Messages
3,487
Location
Not that far from Ottawa
Corvette
1973 Coupe

It sounds like Blueprint are still trying to resolve the issue.

Mac

Not sure, sounds like it's case closed for Dave's issue. They found that the blow-though was out of their control. I gleaned lots of technical info from their post and nothing from the OPs rant.

If anything Blueprint's level headed and prompt response may result in some new business for them, the opposite of what Dave wanted.
 

KANE

Moderator
Joined
Mar 2, 2002
Messages
3,241
Location
KY
Corvette
Dark Blue 1982 Trans Am(s): Polo Green 1995 MN6
Overheat, along with pre-ignition and detonation is one of the most common failures of head gaskets. The engine's cooling system, air/fuel mixture and ignition system all have to be correct to minimize the risks of overheat, pre-ignition and detonation. Unfortunately all of these things were out of our control with this engine.

This is why tuning is HUGELY important!!!

If anyone is upgrading their engine themselves... I seriously recommend Dynamic EFI's EBL systems (P4 or flash). You will need to adjust the timing, fueling, and calibration settings if you have different heads, cams, etc. Without some sort of datalogging capability to record how it is running so that you can make adjustment, YOU COULD RUIN YOUR ENGINE.

I tend to run mine a little rich on WOT (mid 11s- low 12s AFR). It is better to replace fouled plugs than torn up internal components. :thumb
 

dougelam

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 19, 2011
Messages
453
Location
Michigan
Corvette
2002 Roadster
I don't know what to think yet
Most of us probably remember how bad spark knock was in the 80's from most engines!
I've seen more then enough pistons with holes in them but I don't recall any with fire slotting
But then that's just from one little garage in a big world

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jojo1590

New member
Joined
Aug 17, 2016
Messages
4
Location
SC
Corvette
1986 Coupe
This is why tuning is HUGELY important!!!

If anyone is upgrading their engine themselves... I seriously recommend Dynamic EFI's EBL systems (P4 or flash). You will need to adjust the timing, fueling, and calibration settings if you have different heads, cams, etc. Without some sort of datalogging capability to record how it is running so that you can make adjustment, YOU COULD RUIN YOUR ENGINE.

I tend to run mine a little rich on WOT (mid 11s- low 12s AFR). It is better to replace fouled plugs than torn up internal components. :thumb


I agree, Kane. As mentioned above, that is why I had professionals perform all the tuning from the start, and have all work documented.
 

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