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DIY: Replacing Water Pumps


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DIY: Replacing Water Pumps

What you will need:

  1. Open or box end wrenches.
  2. Ratchet wrench set with universal joint.
  3. Assorted screwdrivers.
  4. Drain pan.
  5. Gasket scraper.
  6. Wire brush.
  7. Water pump and gasket.
  8. Permatex #2 gasket sealer.
  9. New hose clamps.

Before You Start:

  • Follow these instructions carefully. Read and be sure you understand them before you begin.
  • Gather together all of your tools and supplies before you begin. Allow plenty of time to do the job so you don't have to hurry.
  • Remember that these are general instructions. For more detailed instructions pertaining to your specific vehicle, consult an appropriate repair manual.
  • Safety is important whenever you're working around machinery. Beware of hot objects, sharp instruments and hazardous materials.
  • Don't substitute tools unless you're sure you won't compromise either your safety or the performance of your vehicle.
  • Never work on a vehicle that is only supported by a jack. Use jack stands to support the vehicle while you work. Work on a solid, level surface. Never jack a car up on dirt or grass.
  • Let the engine cool.
  • Be sure the ignition is OFF and then remove the negative (grounded) battery cable from the battery with the puller after loosening the attaching bolt.
  • Compare the new water pump with your old one, noting the hub height, hose connections, and bolt holes to be sure that you have the correct replacement.

Antifreeze has a sweet smell and taste. It is poisonous and should be kept out of reach of children and pets.

   Okay, let's get to work.

Water Pump Removal:

  1. Drain the coolant from the radiator or engine block into a clean drain pan. Some vehicles require that you remove one end of the lower radiator hose to drain the system. If the coolant is rusty, dirty or over two years old, dispose of it properly, and flush the system before replacing the pump, as contaminated coolant could cause failure of the new pump.

  2. To remove the fan and fan clutch, start with the fan shroud (if you have one) and move it inward over the fan. Remove the fan bolts, and take the fan and shroud off together. If the vehicle has a fan clutch, you might want to consider replacing it at this time. Fan clutches should always be laid face down to prevent damage and assure proper operation. Check the fan for cracks, bent blades or other defects. Don't try to repair a damaged fan, always replace it.

  3. Remove other components as needed to make the water pump accessible. These would include the belts, alternator, power steering pump, and air conditioning compressor. It is not always necessary to remove the hoses or wiring to these components most times you can just move them out of the way - simply place them out of the way. Consult your cars repair manual for specific instructions on engines where parts such as timing belts must be disturbed. Remove all heater and by-pass hoses that are connected to the water pump. At this time, remove any hose fittings that thread into the pump.

  4. Remove the water pump attaching bolts, noting their lengths and positions for correct replacement. Remove the pump from the engine.

   IMPORTANT: If the pump does not come off easily, check to be sure all the mounting bolts have been removed. Do not try to force it off. After the old pump has been removed, carefully clean all the old gasket material from the mounting surface of the engine. Also wire brush the threads of the water pump mounting bolts to pre-pare for reinstallation.

   If required, transfer the studs for fan attachment from the old pump to the new pump. This is most easily accomplished by using the "double nut" method.

   Copyright © 2000 - 2003 Vincent T. Ciulla All Rights Reserved

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