I have a 2001 (30,008 miles) which I'm told commonly require new water pumps due to a bad batch at Conner Ave in 2001 and 2002. I called Tator and asked for guidance. I ordered a new water pump (500ish) and gasket (30ish).
When driving the temp goes up and up, doesn't fall off until i'm idling at road side or at a light. The temp will then quickly fall back to the normal 190-200 range. Logically the impeller was slipping at higher RPM's for who knows how long but I didn't notice as my eyes were on the road.
The plastic impeller inside the water pump has hair line cracks where it was pressed onto the shaft. After time, the the impellers grip on the shaft weakens to the point where it is no longer strong enough to move the coolant through the engine / cooling system without slipping especially at high rpm.
Remove the water pump from the car, grab the impeller with one hand and the pulley side of the shaft with the other. If you can spin these separately you need a new pump.
The process to remove / change a water pump (1-3 hours all in):
Remove the hood (4 nuts)
remove the intake / air box
undo the power steering cooler core and move it aside (2 bolts)
loosen the 4 bolts on the water pump pulley with the belt in place
remove the fan belt (wrench on the tensioner)
remove the 4 hoses (2 to the rad, 2 to the reservoir)
remove the water pump (5 bolts)
remove old gasket with a razor blade.
** Caution the engine is easy to scratch take your time
Don't use sand paper or power tools, the engine / pump interface surface flatness must be preserved. **
apply silicone to the new gasket and work backwards.
do not over torque the bolts, the aluminum block is easy to strip
You don't need to remove the aluminum cross brace to get the water pump out, it can be wiggled out if you're patient
If you need a few extra mm of space loosen the brace and it'll flex
Loosen the 4 pump pulley bolts with the belt on to make your life easier
Pull the power steering cooler out of the way as it's sharp and you WILL hit your knuckles or arms on it
Silicone will hold the gasket in place essentially giving you an extra hand
Hang the pulley on the pump before finalizing its position on the engine. You won't be able to get it in place once the pump is on the engine
When refilling coolant the reservoir is essentially the top of your rad.
Pour some coolant into the large rad hoses before connecting them to the water pump.
After all the tubes are in place, completely fill the reservoir tank and go for a coffee, it'll be empty when you get back.
Fill the reservoir tank again and start the car, let it run till the thermostat opens. This is a great time to check for leaks with your water pump.
Shut the car off and let it cool, top off the coolant reservoir and go for a drive. let the car cool down.
Check the coolant overflow (behind the passenger side fog light) you can see it by removing the rubber plug in the wheel liner and using a flashlight to illuminate the tank. If the overflow does not have the correct amount of coolant you can fill it by removing the head light or pouring coolant down the top most hose coming from the coolant reservoir.
When buying a used water pump:
check for the hairline cracks and impeller play before installing it
use a flashlight to check the seals behind the impeller
look at the weapage hole on the bottom for signs of coolant leaks (this implies the seals are bad)
This info is a collaboration of things I learned from Chuck Tator and from actually doing the work on the car.
Last edited by windsor ACR; May 20th, 2010 at 10:36 AM.
Raise the front of the car about 6" (make sure that the front of the car is higher that the rear of the car as this makes sure the radiator is the HIGHEST point in the system), and fill through the fill neck. You will hear the coolant gurgling as the air is pushed past the vent holes you drilled in the thermostat. When the rad gets full, wait a few min for the coolant to settle and fill it again. You don't want to fill it FULL, leave about 1/2" below the fill neck for anti-aeration.
Start it up with the cap off and run it for 10 min to get the stat to open up, shut it off and top off the coolant, continue doing this till the the rad stays full (1/2" below the fill neck). Keep away from the opening when it's running, if any air burps out it could spray some HOT coolant out. Shut it off, put the cap on the rad, lower it off the jack, and take it for a good test run to get it hot.
There is no back door to heaven...just a front door to hell.
Does anyone here have any experience with the pumps that have the impellers bolted on not just pressed on. Do they hold up better. My last water pump went out in just over 5k miles. I need something that can hold up at the track better. It just went out again and its getting old!
Pulling up an old thread here, but I have had some weird engine temperatures lately. It's a 2000 RT/10. I burped my coolant system and have been checking coolant levels before and after I drive. Levels look good.
So on to what's happening, the car is running hotter than it ever used to. Today it was in the mid 90s and sunny. I was cruising at 30 mph with the AC on and got up to approximately 215. I have never been that hot even in stop and go traffic. Once I was above 50 temp came down to 200 but still fluctuates. The car used to run 190 or slightly lower if I was cruising and say steady. Sitting at idle, the car doesn't get above 205 and I can hear my fans kick on as appropriate.
Am I looking at a failing water pump, something else, or I am just being overly cautious?
Last edited by Rook; August 18th, 2018 at 08:11 AM.
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