So, I have read a lot of discussion from people who have suffered from the poor design issue of the rings that has caused many 2012 insight owners to experience extreme oil consumption. I was right there with you all. I was going through about a quart every 900-1000 miles. For my commute that is a quart every two weeks which to me is unacceptable for a Honda let alone a three year old car.
I wanted to do a write up on my experience doing the engine swap. I shopped online and found an engine from a 2010 Insight which only had 2,xxx miles on it for $950 shipped and that INCLUDED the electric assist motor still attached to the block. The company is Smart Miles located in Florida. Total time for removal of old engine, installation of "new" engine and reconnect and fluid top off was just under ten hours for two people. I was told by Honda, and verified by other insight owner's comments, that a rebuild of my engine was going to be between $5,000 and $6,000!!!! To me there were two problems. 1) The price. There's no way I was going to pay that much money for a rebuild. 2) I wasn't going to pay that much money for a rebuild of my existing motor with how many miles were on it. It just didn't seem smart.
1) Socket set included several extensions (10mm, 12mm, 14mm, 16mm, 19mm will all be needed all deep socket if possible)
2) Phillips and flat head screwdrivers
3) Needle nose pliers and channel locks
4) Impact gun with 3/8" socket adapter (or whatever socket size you have. This is to be used in lieu of a ratchet to speed up the process)
5) Crescent wrench
6) 3' of fuel injection fuel line with a 5/16" opening (this will replace a fuel line that for the life of me I could not remove without cutting off)
7) New fluids (I chose Mobil1 0w20, Beck Arnley blue coolant to meet Honda specs)
8 ) Engine hoist/Cherry picker or some sort of come-a-long system to a rafter for lifting the engine
1) Disconnect 12v battery. Remove trunk components and spare tire. Using 10mm socket, remove two bolts from panel to access IMA battery pack power switch. Turn it OFF.
2) Remove hood. 4 10mm bolts. (hood is very light)
3) Remove two engine shroud covers next to windshield. First, use crescent wrench to remove nut for each windshield wiper. Remove wiper arms. Unsnap upper, plastic shroud cover. Remove 10mm bolts on lower, metal shroud cover.
4) Remove airbox. 4 10mm bolts. Disconnect electrical connection. Loosen hose clamp with screwdriver. Entire airbox unit will come out.
5) Remove intake manifold. Two 10mm bolts in back behind throttle body. Two 12mm nuts and three 12mm bolts in front. Remove 4 12mm bolts from throttle body. Disconnect electrical from intake manifold.
6) Disconnect IMA power cord. Use needle nose pliers to pull green locking sleeve and gently pry against front of connector (plastic housing piece) while flipping the white unlocking lever outward.
7) Remove starter. Only disconnect the smaller electrical connection. Then use 14mm socket to remove the two bolts. (There is a coolant hose clamp bolted to the starter housing using a 10mm bolt. Remove that)
8 ) Remove two AC lines from AC compressor (I'm assuming this is equipped on all insights but if not I guess y'all can ignore this lol). Unscrew green cap on both high and low lines. Marked H and L. Use needle nose pliers to press valve stem needle to bleed pressure. Using a loooooong extension (I had a 2' one), remove 10mm bolt from both lines at the AC compressor. Unplug AC electrical connection.
9) Begin disconnecting all fuel, coolant, and electrical connections. On the smaller coolant lines and fuel lines you can use the needle nose pliers for the hose clamps. The channel locks work great for the larger hoses like the vertical line to the thermostat housing. (you will be able to disconnect the electrical connections and pull the entire wiring harness off to the transmission side of the engine bay. I didn't mark anything because all the connections are the right length to only go to ONE place. Makes it very easy). Remove O2 sensor, heat shields, and top motor mount bolt on inner passenger fender. You will need a Phillips screwdriver to remove the bottom engine guard to access underneath the engine. I left one rear corner attached so it could swivel. Note* There is only one motor mount. There is a mount on the bottom but it is a transmission mount. Do NOT remove that one. Also, there is a hose mount secured to the front of the engine that secures a power steering line. Remove that so you don't bust it.
10) Remove passenger tire. Jack up the car and put it on jack stands (have it in park and e brake on). This will make it easy to work underneath. There is a hole on the wheel well lining to insert a socket to turn the main crank. Should be a 19mm or 3/4" (this is where a second person comes in really handy) At this point, there needs to be support under the engine or a hoist with resistance so it wont want to fall. Inside the starter hole you can see a big gear butted up against a flat plate. That is where the Tranny mates up to the Electric Motor. With someone SLOWLY hand cranking the engine, another person needs to signal when a 10mm bolt is visible. Have the person stop cranking and remove that 10mm bolt. Repeat this step until all 6 bolts are removed.
11) Remove all the bell housing bolts. Some bolts go in from the left and some from the right. There is one on the back side of the engine sort of hidden so be sure you remove them all (if you have the new engine already you can just count the holes to be sure) This is an 11/16" socket or 16mm. Once removed your engine is completely free. Before pulling it out, double check that all connections are freed. This is a very tight fit with about a 1/4" of room but it will come free. I used a cherry picker and connected the chain to one of the front intake manifold bolts and to an EGR bolt. It came out fairly level so I was pleased.
12) Now is where you'll want to start switching things out and double check all your connections are the same. I say this because next to the PCV valve is a sensor (I believe the knock sensor but I could be wrong. Anyways) The sensor from the 2010 didn't fit the 2012 wiring harness; however, threading on the block is the same so I just switched them out. I recommend doing this BEFORE you put the new engine in because there isn't a lot of room.
13) With the new engine in the air (assuming all components have been installed) I would double check and drain the motor. Mine still had the original oil in it to my surprise so I had a gallon jug and let it flow. Again, double check everything is installed. It can be a little confusing because you'll have a ton of extra bolts since you have two motors
14) Begin lowering new engine into car. It'd be good to have someone underneath verifying that heat shields, wires, hoses etc etc are not being crushed. SLOOOOOWLY bring it down. You'll have some resistance because, again, the working space is so tight. Get the motor mount lined up and on the bell housing there are two alignment dowels, once those are in place you are good to start bolting everything together. I would recommend you secure the transmission gear to the electric motor first so you don't forget. Again, someone slowly cranks the engine by hand while the other installs the six 10mm bolts.
15) Reconnect all fuel, coolant, electrical lines. This is where that 3' of fuel line comes in. The incoming fuel line to the fuel rail was impossible for me to remove without cutting. So I cut it, removed it, and installed this new section of line. 3' is actually more than enough, but this way you can route it however. I went between the air box and the throttle body. The wiring harness can be a little tricky but it will go back into place with a little finesse. Make sure all the stuff in the back is reconnected ie O2 sensor, heat shields, EGR tube. Reconnect the AC compressor and install the AC lines on top. Once you've got everything installed, go and double check that EVERY electrical connection is made. There are three behind the throttle body on the back side of the engine that you have to connect without really even being able to see. Once you think you've got it all connect, double check again. There are three grounding straps too. One by the motor mount, one from the wiring harness to the block next to the throttle body, and then the battery to frame.
16) Add fluids. Add oil until it's almost to the full mark since your car is sitting at and incline. Add the coolant and fill up some in the reservoir. Once the engine warms up you'll have to top it off. It's a good idea to run the engine at an incline like this so you can double check that the system is burped and all air is out. I do this with the radiator cap off and no funnel but that's just me
17) Reconnect battery and turn on IMA. Start engine and let it idle up to temp. If everything looks good, secure bottom panel under engine, reinstall passenger tire, lower vehicle, reinstall remaining miscellaneous components in engine, put everything back into trunk, and take her for a test drive keeping a close eye on your dash for temp and any error codes. I test drove mine close to home JIC.
I'm sure there is a lot more technical info that I could have included but this should really get you by just fine. It is definitely not a scary job. Honestly much easier than removing the transmission from my 1991 Isuzu Trooper
If you all have any questions, please feel free to PM me or comment on this thread. I really hope this can help someone learn about these cars and also save a lot of money.