Engine lifters are the link between an engine's camshaft and piston's valves. Although they are reasonable accessible from the top of most engines, a considerable amount of work is required to reach them. It is not a job for the lay person. Replacing one or more lifters generally requires 8 to16 hours of labor, depending on the engine model. The cost to replace engine lifters will range between $500 and $1,500. Since engine designs vary widely, the expense of this operation also will vary.