The Reasons and Signs of Water Pump and Engine Failure

If your automobile has crossed 100,000 miles without any major repairs, you would certainly feel great. However, there is one component that you should take a look at – the water pump. You may have noticed that as the car was reaching the 100,000 mark, you were starting to get a smell similar to maple syrup spilled on the radiator. You probably put that as a ‘thing to look at later’. However, this is one ‘thing’ you need to pay close attention to. If you don’t, the water pump may break down, and you will be walking, or taking the bus to work. The maple syrup smell is a sign that you need to replace your water pump. We provide you the information you need in this post.

What Causes a Water Pump to Break Down?

Automobile water pumps are designed with rubber parts, and spring-loaded mechanical seals. However, if the engine overheats repeatedly, the rubber parts may start disintegrating. When the engine becomes dry, the polished sealing faces start wearing off and warping.  This results in immense pump leakage. But wait, there’s more. If the engine is running without a coolant, the leaking seal can cause the shaft bearing lubricant to wash off. This can lead to the shaft snapping off, which can cause the motor fan or the belt pulley damaging the radiator of the hood of the car. To put it simply, shaft leakage can result in many expensive repairs.

Signs of the Water Pump and Engine Failure

You need to examine the engine carefully when you start getting the distinctive smell of the coolant. There are a few points you need to remember when checking the engine and water pump for possible failure.

  • Give the radiator a look-over.
  • The engine is creating some strange noise.
  • Check the hoses for any leaky connections.
  • Check the heater core if the smell is strong on the passenger side.
  • You should check the impeller if it has become loose from the shaft.
  • Check for seal leakage. There will always be a little coolant on the faces for lubrication. But dripping is a sure sign of leakage.

These various signs will help you understand that it is time to replace or repair the water pump. In the next post, we will provide the steps to take when replacing a water pump.