What's the best way to replace the water pump? on 1990 Nissan Sentra

Actually, my car is a 1989 Nissan Sentra. The water pump is about 3 inches from the wheel well wall, hence not much room. So, what's the best way to remove and replace it? Am I going to be forced to lift the engine? Is it best just to take it to the shop at a cost of around $500?

Asked by for the 1990 Nissan Sentra
Disconnect battery ground cable and drain cooling system.
Remove drive belts for compressor, power steering, and alternator.
Remove water pump pulley, then the water pump and gasket, Fig. 31.
Reverse procedure to install, using new gasket.

2.5 hours isn't that bad for a pump replacement, it's just tight quarters. If you have the tools go ahead and tackle it. Remember to loosen the pulley bolts with the belt on.
After all these years, I still don't understand the directions to remove the battery cable for simple mechanical work. There are too many things that require uninterupted battery, though with an older car it is not likely there would be a problem.
Anyway, the access is tight but doable with listed above. Don't forget this is a good time to change the fan belt as well if it is cracked. You will need a flash light to see it well enough. Note: 2.5 hours is the flat rate time for an experienced tech with all the right tools. I'd say it should cost less than $500 unless there are other things needed like hoses.
Dana Meyer Auto Care 527-1938