What is a water pump?
Water pumps are vital for keeping your engine at a regulated and safe temperature. If either of these components are damaged or don't function correctly, it may lead to irreparable engine damage.
Your water pump generates a constant flow of coolant all around your vehicle’s cooling system. It creates the proper distribution to keep all the parts working under their optimal temperatures and that all the extra heat is dispensed safely into the environment.
The coolant streams through the engine block, collecting the excess heat, and then runs through cooling galleries to disperse it. Without the water pump the coolant couldn’t flow around these vital components, the engine would get too hot, and possibly seize up.
The timing belt drives the water pump—and their correlation is crucial to the functioning of your engine.
Car water pump repair and replacement average costs
The cost of a water pump repair or replacement can vary depending on your car make and model. The average cost of repairing a water pump with WhoCanFixMyCar is around £239.42.
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Which water pump repair service do you need?
Taking care of your water pump in the first place is very important to get the most out of it. Always use the manufacturer's recommended coolant, stick to the coolant service schedule, and flush the system whenever you change the fluid. Incorrect coolant, or too high a percentage of water can cause internal corrosion, which can damage metal components such as the impeller, or even erode pump housing and engine block. A broken or damaged water pump can easily lead to severe engine damage, including a chance of it seizing completely.
The average cost of a water pump repair when booked on WhoCanFixMyCar is £239.42.
A leak of any liquid from your car is a sign that you might have a damaged water pump. A water pump repair is a standard job that doesn't take long to carry out.Can include
- Visual inspection and diagnosis
- Water pump repair
The average cost of an engine coolant replacement booked on WhoCanFixMyCar is £81.78.
If engine coolant levels are too low or are leaking, this can cause problems for your vehicle. A professional can top up your engine coolant quickly and easily to help avoid your engine overheating.Can include
- Visual inspection
- Engine coolant refill
The average cost of an engine oil change booked on WhoCanFixMyCar is £82.39.
Car engine oil is vital for keeping your engine cool and well lubricated. If you're not sure what type of oil your car needs or how to do an oil change, a mechanic can take care of it within about 40 minutes.Can include
- Oil level check
- Oil top-up
- Oil change
- Oil filter change
Water pump and timing belt repair or replacement
It is not uncommon for your car mechanic to recommend that you have your water pump and timing belt replaced at the same time. This is because the job of the water pump is reliant on the condition of the timing belt, which means replacing both makes more sense.
It is more affordable to change both, as when the technician works on your water pump, the time taken to remove it and replace it will be more or less the same as when you change both.
Top warning signs that your water pump needs to be checked
The first warning sign of a water pump which needs looking at, is pools of coolant under your car.
When the bonnet is lifted you might see fluid around the engine bay, where the water pump is situated.
You might find your car doesn’t start.
The temperature gauge is showing higher than usual
The engine light shows on your dashboard
Steam from under the bonnet
Whining or grinding sounds
Common car water pump problems
Some of the most common water pump problems you may be facing are:
If your water pump is faulty, it may cause the vehicle to overheat. The problem could be due to a faulty water pump, faulty radiator, thermostat or hoses. Only a trained mechanic will be able to diagnose why the engine is overheating.
A faulty water pump can be a cause of your coolant leak. It can also be coming from the radiator, gasket, or hose. The leak caused by a faulty water pump is apparent from where the leak is coming from. If the antifreeze is leaking beneath the water pump when the car is parked up, then the water pump is most likely at fault.
Water pump leaking
This is a common water pump issue. It can happen because of general wear and tear of car parts.
Sound of whining or grinding
This also indicates that your water pump is faulty, and often alerts the mechanic of a loose water pump pulley. The technician will diagnose the faulty pump pulley, and let you know if the bearings in the pump have worn down. If the bearings are worn out, the water pump will most likely need to be replaced.
White steam from under the hood
A possible sign of a faulty water pump is if you notice steam is coming from under the bonnet. Sometimes the water pump, radiator cap or the radiator itself can cause this. If you notice this, stop immediately in a safe space and contact your local garage or roadside recovery
Is a water pump repair or replacement necessary?
As the water pump has an extremely important function within the car, we recommend that you never drive a car if it is showing signs of a faulty or leaking water pump. It’s a much more affordable job to have repaired than to leave a faulty water pump to chance, which can severely impact your engine, resulting in expensive garage bills.
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What is a water pump?
The water pump in a car has the job of sending the antifreeze coolant through the cooling system. The water pump system sends the coolant around the engine, cylinder head, radiator, heater core, and intake manifold through the connecting hoses and lines.
This helps regulate the temperature within the vehicle’s engine and components and also keeps the fluid from freezing when its cold. The water pump works using a timing belt.
What are some of the reasons a water pump might fail?
Some of the ways your water pump may fail include:
Old worn out water pump seal that starts leaking
Over-tensed timing belt puts increased pressure on the shaft and bearing which and lead to a broken shaft or bearing
It is possible that a water pump failure will cause the engine to overheat
Old coolant can make your water pump faulty
A faulty seal can cause premature water pump failure
Low system pressure due to a bad radiator cap, low fluid level, faulty hose can cause water pump failure.
How long does it take to replace a water pump?
Replacing a water pump can take a specialist between half a day and a full day to complete.
Can I fix the water pump myself?
We do not recommend anyone without mechanical knowledge or relevant automotive experience to replace or repair the water pump themselves. It is a complicated process and if the new water pump isn’t correctly installed, or the belt that drives it, then it can cause the whole engine to fail.
Can I drive with a faulty water pump?
Do not drive if you suspect your water pump is faulty. This is because the function of the water pump is mandatory to the engine, we would never advise anyone to drive with a faulty or leaking water pump. If you have a faulty water pump, then stop at a safe place, and call roadside assistance or your local garage for help.
How long will my water pump last?
Car manufacturers recommend that their pumps should be able to last around 100k of service, so depending on your usage, you should think about a water pump replacement anywhere between 50k and 100k miles.
How much does a water pump repair or replacement cost?
Water pump repairs will differ, as will the amount of labour work needed, and which parts are affected. As a result, the cost will vary accordingly. Depending on your car make and model, a water pump repair or replacement should cost you on average £239.42.