Engine - Change Your Water Pump! | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)
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Engine Change Your Water Pump!

Discussion in '2nd Gen 1991-1996 1.9L SOHC' started by dalebwilson, Aug 2, 2015.

  1. dalebwilson

    dalebwilson New Member

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    First post here. Been driving a 91LX 1.9 for 3 months after the previous owner told me he replaced the timing belt recently. The water pump locked up on the way home the other day, stripped the timing belt and put me on the side of the road. After a free AAA tow and a few hours later, I am back on the road with a new water pump, tensioner and Gates timing belt. About $75 total.

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  2. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    Welcome to the forums! I agree with changing the water pumps. If I had just bought an Escort and didnt know its history I would need no other reason beyond that to be changing its water pump and timing belt. Its usually the only way to know for certain when the belt and pump were changed.
    How many miles were on the engine in this case? Was the water pump likely the original? And did you do the work yourself? I see that the crankshaft pulley, the upper motor mount isolator and the tensioner for the serpentine belt are out of the way; and that the OEM style spring clamp is on the old hose.
    I own five 2nd gen Escorts and have rebuilt the engines/transmissions on four of them - which the wife and I use for daily drivers. I bought them each with known mechanical problems. The fifth one is a "as-is" 94LX wagon with 5-speed trans I am working on now, for my daughter.
    For me, I have found it 'not at all workable' to get a new lower radiator hose onto the front inlet to the water pump - if the accessory bracket is in the way. The new hoses seem to be a really snug fit, but arent hard to install if the accessory bracket is not in the way. Actually I have done the hose replacement (and water pump replacement) with the engine block still on my workbench. I also prefer using the OEM style spring clamps, in preference to the screw type hose clamps.
    I try to keep a sort of journal for each of my Escorts, plus the two others that are in the family - so I know at what date and distance the repairs were done; to remind me to keep up the maintenance/replacements for them.
  3. dalebwilson

    dalebwilson New Member

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    Thank you denisond3. Mileage on the engine is unknown. The odometer turns over at a very rapid rate and is certainly not accurate at all. The water pump looked to be original. The bearing in it failed and the pump impeller fused to the housing. Yes, I do all my own work and did this first Escort timing belt/water pump job in a few hours at my leisure. I own 2 Festivas (Mazda drivetrain) and can do a timing belt on those in an hour or so. In the photo, I had removed the necessary components to gain access to the timing belt. I had already removed the valve cover to determine if the camshaft had quit turning. The lower radiator hose was in fact a tight fit and certainly a poor design to maneuver back unto the water pump inlet.
  4. Supersedona

    Supersedona FEOA Member

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    What is an average life expectancy for the belt and pump? I bought mine with a log book and records of it being done at 100k by a dealer and its at 228k now. I know the book says 100k but I have been behind the ball trying to budget the other rehabs.
  5. EscorGo

    EscorGo FEOA Donator

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    My guess is you are on borrowed time right now. If you are lucky, you may be close to home when it breaks and a tow won't cost much. Luckier still if it holds out long enough for you to get to it before it breaks.
    My Focus wagon had 140k when I bought it. The PO never changed the belt. I replaced it and the wp right away. I was victim of a broken belt on my TurboCoupe once. Very inconvenient to say the least.
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  6. dalebwilson

    dalebwilson New Member

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    Its time to change your water pump. If you shop around, you can buy the water pump with tensioner, timing belt and coolant for around $75. Try Rock Auto and use their discount. Being on the side of the road at 95 degrees outside is no fun.
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  7. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    I also like to put in new idler and tensioner pulleys for the serpentine belt after about 100k-150k miles, and since most of my Escorts came to me with more mileage than that, I have replaced the original pulleys on all of them.
  8. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    If you use good quality parts, I'd replace them every 100K miles.
  9. EscorGo

    EscorGo FEOA Donator

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    PS: I just replaced the waterpump on the wife's Cadillac. It puked all over the garage floor. The pump on the Northstar is driven by it's own little belt on the back of one camshaft. Weird but it works, Pump, belt and tensioner replaced.
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  10. dchawk81

    dchawk81 FEOA Member

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    I got my wagon with 192k and the water pump/timing belt/tensioner were the first things I did. Before I even got the title back from the state.
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  11. Supersedona

    Supersedona FEOA Member

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    I just did serpentine and tensioner a couple months ago but no wierd noises or leaks from under the timing cover yet. A/C pulley sounds like its getting bumpy. Just had to do one of those on my 05 liberty last month. That has 130k+ on the original pump with no leaks, which was what my s10 had when it went. Granted v6 pumps are so much easier to do.
  12. its840

    its840 FEOA Member

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    my escort had about 130k miles on it when the timing belt broke...
    so while i was in there, i replaced the tensioner and water pump..
    for all the parts it was only 110$
    gates belt and tensioner and new WP
  13. bogateer

    bogateer FEOA Member

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    Hey just jumping in here on this thread. My '91 Escort LX is almost at 65,000 miles so I'm gathering the parts and tools to do the timing belt. It's been well-maintained and am wondering if I should do the water pump as well, while I'm in there just as preventative maintenance...or if I can get a fair number of miles out of it yet? I already have a water pump....so it's just a matter of the extra labor (and that dreaded front hose). But given the years and miles should I just bite the bullet and replace it now, too? Thoughts?
  14. dalebwilson

    dalebwilson New Member

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    Replace it. Don't sweat the front hose. Raise the front end and put the car on jack stands. Put a little grease on the inside of the hose and slide it unto the water pump from underneath. Took me less than 5 minutes.
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  15. dchawk81

    dchawk81 FEOA Member

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    It's too easy once you're at the belt to NOT do the pump too. That's why companies sell them as kits. The extra labor at that point is nothing compared to ripping it all apart a second time.
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  16. bogateer

    bogateer FEOA Member

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    Awesome. Thank you. I'll do just that.
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  17. bogateer

    bogateer FEOA Member

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    Thanks! I'll do just that. I appreciate the reply.
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  18. Maxwelhse

    Maxwelhse FEOA Member

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    FWIW, I bought a Gates WP and Gates belt from Rock Auto for $25.79/$9.91 2 weeks ago (plus like $6 to ship) in Gates retail branded boxes. It was WAY cheaper to buy it that way than it was to buy a kit for name brand parts. I even bought a few extra gaskets for like $1/ea just to make sure I would have a couple in case something went wrong. Not sure if Gates is going to be better than anything else, but I don't expect it to be worse.

    Previously I put a cheap Autozone pump on and it was also fine but even AZ's generic *new* pumps are nearly twice as much money.

    Coolant prices are obscene everywhere I look though (as far as I'm concerned... $12 for a gallon of the cheap green stuff "traditional" stuff??!).
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  19. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    I'm not sure I would use a Gates water pump.
  20. Maxwelhse

    Maxwelhse FEOA Member

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    It ain't on there yet... I'm open to suggestions but we are on a super tight budget.

    I saw someone had an issue with the tensioner pulley on the Gates, but it seemed like it was sort of an obvious issue that they only recognized in hindsight (already checked mine and she's nice and smooth and true). Otherwise I haven't really heard boo about them.

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