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FAQ saves me and my water pump!


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I will preempt this story by saying that I truly don't work on my car like most of you. I'm learning slowly as things pop up, and before he passed away, was being trained by Mr. Ingraham. Now it's just me and the FAQ, but I think I'm doing quite well for myself!

A few weeks back, I started noticing a pool of coolant below the car after parking overnight. It was coming from the front near the radiator, and as far as I could tell, I thought it might be a hose warping with the change in temperature (it's gotten much cooler over the past month here in the Bay Area).

But I suspected that my problem was not really a hose and was something much more sinister. I started pouring through the FAQ each night for a week trying to figure out where coolant might be leaking. I eventually narrowed it down to the thermostat and the water pump, found pictures of each, went and found them on my car. I cleaned things up around each area, fired up the car to warm it up, then turned it off and waited. Bingo. Weep hole on the water pump. I got Berkeley Motor Works to do the heavy lifting, and I saved my car from further damage.

Thanks FAQers! One day, I'll be doing all my own work once we move to a house (living in an apartment now), but until then, I'll learn and be vigilant!

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One of the good things about replacing the water pump is that almost all of the work can be done from the top - only need to crawl under to drain the radiator and the block coolent plug.

Another thing I've learned after wrenching for a little over 50 years on, first, 356 Porsches, then BMWs, is that the second time you do something it takes almost exactly half the time it did the first time you did it. Unfortunately, you do have to go thru that 1st time in order to get to the 2nd.

Bob Napier


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