How to Quickly Find Engine Serial Numbers

Along with the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), the Engine Serial Number (ESN) plays a crucial role in determining the service information you require. Using the correct ESN helps pinpoint your actual service, repair or maintenance requirements information.

The VIN is easy to find and is usually located on a sticker located on the driver’s door or door frame. The ESN provides a bit more of a challenge to locate.

Mitchell 1’s TruckSeries repair software can help you quickly locate that engine identification plate. Look in the “Engine Mechanical” article for your engine application under General Information or Engine Identification headings. Once you know where to look, you may have to get out the flashlight along with a shop towel and a bit of solvent to find and identify the ESN. Use your cell phone camera if possible and snap a quick picture of the ID plate.

Unfortunately, no industry standard exists for ESN location, so OEMs place their engine identification plates in a variety of locations. Look on the top of the valve cover, front, back or either side of the engine block.

All included graphic screen shots are taken directly from various TruckSeries program articles. In the flat rate world, “time is money,” so save yourself some time and take a quick look in your article to assist in locating the ESN.

And another reason to have that ESN handy is when you call our Product Content Support team for assistance. If you can provide them the ESN it will help speed up your request for service information. You can reach the Product Content Support team by phone at 888.724.6742 (Monday – Friday, 5:30 am – 4:30 pm Pacific Time).

About the Author

Bruce Cansler

Bruce Cansler started his automotive career in 1973 as a technician for Datsun. He retired from the U.S. Navy as a Seabee Construction Mechanic with 20 active years of service and 10 as a reservist, then spent time working in Ford, Lexus and Caterpillar dealerships. Bruce has obtained ASE certifications in both cars and medium/heavy trucks and has worked with the Commercial Vehicle Group at Mitchell 1 since 2009.