Auto Systems and Repair: Water Pump
Symptoms of Wear or Failure
- Noise from engine area, including a rumbling sound
- Coolant leak
- Engine overheating
Related Repair Advice
- When replacing the water pump, the drive belts may need to be removed. The belts should be replaced if they show signs of wear.
- The water pump may be driven by the timing belt or chain. It these cases, it is common to replace the water pump when the belt or chain is replaced.
- Water pumps require replacement if they begin to leak coolant or become noisy. A leaking water pump can result in damage to the drive and timing belts.
- A failed water pump can be caused by problems in the cooling system, such as a failing thermostat, radiator, or head gasket
- The entire cooling system—including all of the coolant hoses and fittings, radiator, coolant fan(s), and fan clutch (if equipped)—should be inspected when replacing the water pump
- To help prevent future issues, we recommend replacing the thermostat when the cooling system has been opened for repairs (e.g. water pump or radiator replacement) or during a system flush
Most water pumps are either driven independently via their own belts or are driven by a serpentine belt that also drives many other components. Some current designs use the timing belt to drive the water pump. In these cases, it is advisable to replace the water pump in conjunction with scheduled timing belt replacement.