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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk Menlow's Avatar
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    06.14.17 @ 06:46 PM
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    Default Auto Repair Help

    Any Linkers mechanics or knowledgable about cars? Need some advice. My wife's van started leaking coolant this weekend. I drove it a few miles yesterday to buy more and it overheated on the way. manged to get to the auto store and filled it with coolant, but it started overheating worse on the way home. Eventually I stopped at a gas station and left it at the garage there. They just called me to say that the water pump was leaking and it would be $425.00 for a new one.

    Here are my issues/questions:

    1. In November we were visiting relatives out of town when I heard the timing belt sounding funny. My brother-in-law's mechanic took my car home and installed a new belt and a new water pump. Now the water pump is bad? Is it possible he screwed up, or is it possible that the current mechanic is wrong?

    2. Did I do further damage to the car by driving it when it was so hot? I was not going more than 15 mph and pulled over and idled a bunch of times, but is there any possible damage I should have this guy look for? I don't want to pay to have this fixed and find out there's more wrong with the car. It's a 2001 Dodge Caravan and it's not worth sinking a ton of money into.

    Any advice would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Good Enough
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    Quote Originally Posted by Menlow View Post
    Any Linkers mechanics or knowledgable about cars? Need some advice. My wife's van started leaking coolant this weekend. I drove it a few miles yesterday to buy more and it overheated on the way. manged to get to the auto store and filled it with coolant, but it started overheating worse on the way home. Eventually I stopped at a gas station and left it at the garage there. They just called me to say that the water pump was leaking and it would be $425.00 for a new one.

    Here are my issues/questions:

    1. In November we were visiting relatives out of town when I heard the timing belt sounding funny. My brother-in-law's mechanic took my car home and installed a new belt and a new water pump. Now the water pump is bad? Is it possible he screwed up, or is it possible that the current mechanic is wrong?

    2. Did I do further damage to the car by driving it when it was so hot? I was not going more than 15 mph and pulled over and idled a bunch of times, but is there any possible damage I should have this guy look for? I don't want to pay to have this fixed and find out there's more wrong with the car. It's a 2001 Dodge Caravan and it's not worth sinking a ton of money into.

    Any advice would be appreciated.
    NOT A MECHANIC SEZ: overheating your engine could cause the heads to warp leading to head gasket failure. My ex just had to put a water pump in a 200? Chrysler Town and Country w/3.8L six. it's possible the new water pump is toast as you probably don't know the quality of the replacement (I opted for mexican rotor replacement on my Mitsubishi... bad idea).

    The symptoms you give point to pump failure. I'd be concerned about the head gasket at this point. Your preventive driving measures may have damaged the motor. No circulating water = excessive heat. Pulling over and/or driving slow leads to diminished/no air flow through radiator. Furthermore, a functioning water pump pumps less water at lower speeds = less cooling.
    Does the heater function? No heat = no water.

    I'd get a second opinion. DO NOT go to Dodge service unless you have warranty. Car dealers make their profits off of service bays.

    Good luck.

  3. #3
    Atomic Punk ZeoBandit's Avatar
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    12.14.17 @ 05:57 AM
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    To answer your questions:

    1) Is it possible he screwed up, or is it possible that the current mechanic is wrong?
    Yes, Yes, or it is also possible the new pump is defective. Was it rebuilt or brand new? Either way it should be under some sort of warranty.

    2) It's possible further damage may have been done, depending on how far it was driven and how long it was overheating for. I am not aware of any tests that can be done without tearing the engine apart (which is not advisable).
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  4. #4
    Good Enough SLEEPER5150's Avatar
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    12.03.10 @ 03:16 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Menlow View Post
    Any Linkers mechanics or knowledgable about cars? Need some advice. My wife's van started leaking coolant this weekend. I drove it a few miles yesterday to buy more and it overheated on the way. manged to get to the auto store and filled it with coolant, but it started overheating worse on the way home. Eventually I stopped at a gas station and left it at the garage there. They just called me to say that the water pump was leaking and it would be $425.00 for a new one.

    Here are my issues/questions:

    1. In November we were visiting relatives out of town when I heard the timing belt sounding funny. My brother-in-law's mechanic took my car home and installed a new belt and a new water pump. Now the water pump is bad? Is it possible he screwed up, or is it possible that the current mechanic is wrong?

    2. Did I do further damage to the car by driving it when it was so hot? I was not going more than 15 mph and pulled over and idled a bunch of times, but is there any possible damage I should have this guy look for? I don't want to pay to have this fixed and find out there's more wrong with the car. It's a 2001 Dodge Caravan and it's not worth sinking a ton of money into.

    Any advice would be appreciated.
    First and formost....any indication what your temperature was?
    The first thing to check is the thermostat. it's the cheapest part, and depending on the design, the can jam or stick.
    If it's fine then........
    It's not out of the question for the waterpump to be bad, even a relatively new on. All it takes is a little peice of slag or sand from the casting process, within the bearing seal at manufacture to wreak havoc. This happens more often with brake master cylinders; It'll be relatively new, and you start getting a soft pedal after a while. (You bleed your breaks, and it returns) It's from debris scoring the surface of the seal. On your Dodge, I'm not sure if this is an aluminum block....the heads probably are but let me know as it handles adverse temperatures poorly, but even on complete iron castings, the main concern here is the possibility that there could be warpage caused by the excessive heat. It is very minute, but the worst case scenario, is you may have a head gasket leak develop from the mating surfaces being not true. Most often this appears as very white smoke coming out of the exhaust. This is from high pressure water entering the combution chamber. In rarer cases, very rare, you may get oil into your cooling system. You open your rad cap, and you'll see the coolant looks like "milkshake". At any rate, there's no simple check for damage. Basically, drive it, and look for these symptoms. Often, if coolant is getting into the cylinders, even if you're not getting the smoke (actually a combination of steam, and glycol smoke) there will be a foul smell coming from the exhaust.
    Another thing to keep an eye on is your oil consumption. Are you going through more oil now? How about the valve cover...Does it leak oil around the seal? Often with a bad overheat, the seal will sucumb to the bolt pressure with the heat and compress under expansion. When the engine is cold, it will leak.

    Let's start with that, and get back to me. I've got other suggestions.
    For the record, i went through this last year when someone sold me the wrong rotation waterpump, and I overheated a 348 stroker motor in my Mustang. I have to rebore the block and get it decked.
    She looks so $#@!'n good ,so sexy and so frail....Somethin's got the bite on me, I'm goin' straight to Hell.

  5. #5
    Atomic Punk Menlow's Avatar
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    06.14.17 @ 06:46 PM
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    Thanks for the responses. I asked the mechanic if he noticed any other damage to the car and he said no, it started fine and there was no smoke coming from the tailpipe or the engine. He said he wouldn't be able to tell me why the new pump went bad until he got in and opened it up. I was under the impression that the water pump was a new part and not refurbished, but I'll see what he says. I told him to do it.

  6. #6
    Good Enough SLEEPER5150's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Menlow View Post
    Thanks for the responses. I asked the mechanic if he noticed any other damage to the car and he said no, it started fine and there was no smoke coming from the tailpipe or the engine. He said he wouldn't be able to tell me why the new pump went bad until he got in and opened it up. I was under the impression that the water pump was a new part and not refurbished, but I'll see what he says. I told him to do it.
    believe it or not...with waterpumps, I usually go the re-man route. Yes the cost is alot less, but honestly, I've replaced far fewer re-mans, than ones I've spent three times as much fo new. The reason I feel is that in a re-man unit, the housing is basically bead blasted, tumbled, and cleaned. Any casting flash that could be probelematic is long gone, so when they install the new bearing/seal assembly, there's less chance for debris to be present. Same as with master cylinders to. in theory, a new unit should be the better choice, but in this day and age of off shore manufacturing, it's not always the case. even some Edelbrock stuff I've bought over the years...casted in Mexico, like a carb I bought had casting sand in the bowl! No kidding! Assembled in America, but still not cleaned sufficiently. Imagine that getting in a jet, or worse in your cyliders.
    She looks so $#@!'n good ,so sexy and so frail....Somethin's got the bite on me, I'm goin' straight to Hell.

  7. #7
    Baluchitherium
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    12.13.17 @ 02:13 AM
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    The timing belt or the serpentine/pulley belt?

  8. #8
    Sinner's Swing! csm5150's Avatar
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    It does sound like a problem w/the pump, though it could also be you have a leak in your radiator. Have you noticed any stains on where the car is parked over night? How much coolant did you have to put in? You could buy some stop leak which is far cheaper than having to replace the radiator and/or get it bored out. I'd check the radiator as well.

    My water pump went out and I had no clue-my gauges conviently stopped working a week or so prior to this and it burnt my motor up. $2500 when all was said and done for a POS work truck.
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  9. #9
    Unchained 5150jeff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SLEEPER5150 View Post
    First and formost....any indication what your temperature was?
    The first thing to check is the thermostat. it's the cheapest part, and depending on the design, the can jam or stick.
    If it's fine then........
    It's not out of the question for the waterpump to be bad, even a relatively new on. All it takes is a little peice of slag or sand from the casting process, within the bearing seal at manufacture to wreak havoc. This happens more often with brake master cylinders; It'll be relatively new, and you start getting a soft pedal after a while. (You bleed your breaks, and it returns) It's from debris scoring the surface of the seal. On your Dodge, I'm not sure if this is an aluminum block....the heads probably are but let me know as it handles adverse temperatures poorly, but even on complete iron castings, the main concern here is the possibility that there could be warpage caused by the excessive heat. It is very minute, but the worst case scenario, is you may have a head gasket leak develop from the mating surfaces being not true. Most often this appears as very white smoke coming out of the exhaust. This is from high pressure water entering the combution chamber. In rarer cases, very rare, you may get oil into your cooling system. You open your rad cap, and you'll see the coolant looks like "milkshake". At any rate, there's no simple check for damage. Basically, drive it, and look for these symptoms. Often, if coolant is getting into the cylinders, even if you're not getting the smoke (actually a combination of steam, and glycol smoke) there will be a foul smell coming from the exhaust.
    Another thing to keep an eye on is your oil consumption. Are you going through more oil now? How about the valve cover...Does it leak oil around the seal? Often with a bad overheat, the seal will sucumb to the bolt pressure with the heat and compress under expansion. When the engine is cold, it will leak.

    Let's start with that, and get back to me. I've got other suggestions.
    For the record, i went through this last year when someone sold me the wrong rotation waterpump, and I overheated a 348 stroker motor in my Mustang. I have to rebore the block and get it decked.
    That realy sucks man,as for water pumps in all the old clunkers i use to have it seemes like i was allways changing water pumps,the shaft bearing seal would always go and it would leak from the little hole in the casting right under the shaft,and gearbox pitman shaft seals use to drive me nuts!

  10. #10
    Baluchitherium Mikey Metalhead's Avatar
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    Im no expert, but based on 20 years ago when I did all my own maint... including changing a water pump once and doing a bad job...

    unfortunately, if your not going to do it yourself, im not sure there is much difference in the price of re-attaching the old one if its just a leak or buying a new one... the cost is 90% labor, not much to a water pump.

    I gree with what someone said earlier though, most often its a stuck thermostat... get a second opinion and make sure you are not getting taken
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  11. #11
    On Fire Rare Painful Side Effect's Avatar
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    If you are ever on the road and see your car overheating, turn the car's heater on high. The exchange from the heater coils will cool it down sufficiently to keep the car from overheating. This does not work if it is out of coolant, though.

    Idling is the worst thing you can do to an overheating car.

  12. #12
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rare Painful Side Effect View Post

    Idling is the worst thing you can do to an overheating car.
    followed by being too close to the car in front of you...

  13. #13
    Unchained 5150jeff's Avatar
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  14. #14
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    wasn't really meant to be funny, though. I was at a race at Dover in the mid'90s, and as I left the race, my '89 Escort was overheating. As the traffic creeped along and I was stuck in the middle of it, my temperature shot up and steam would be coming from under the hood. When we'd get to a point where we'd start moving a little - even if it was only 20-25, but I could allow a little more space to the car in front of me, the temperature would start to go down and the steam would subside. And of course, once things finally opened up and I could start doing normal speed, the temperature was able to get down to a more reasonable level.

    Gotta get air in the front of that car when you're having an overheating issue. Simple NASCAR science!

  15. #15
    Unchained 5150jeff's Avatar
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    ^ gotch ya,i was thinking something else.

 

 

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