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6 Signs of a Broken Water Pump

Too often, drivers dismiss certain kinds of car damage as relatively minor and avoid getting them fixed immediately. However, many seemingly minor issues can become catastrophic over time. A damaged water pump is one such issue.

mechanic replacing broken water pump

The Importance of the Water Pump

The water pump plays a vital role in your vehicle's operation. It circulates coolant throughout the engine to keep its temperature at optimal levels. Operational engines generate a lot of heat during the combustion process. Without the coolant and a properly functioning water pump to dissipate it, the engine can overheat, damaging other components and preventing efficient operation. The longer a car operates without a working water pump, the higher the chance that the engine will fail entirely.

Water pumps also perform a few other vital roles. Some water pumps have design features that help them lubricate engine components, such as the shaft and bearings, to keep the vehicle operating smoothly. Others have mechanical seals that minimize the risk of coolant leaks. Still others are designed to help drive the vehicle's timing chain or belt. The multiple functions water pumps can perform underscore how important they are for your vehicle's continued safe operation.

Signs of a Broken Water Pump

Water pumps may fail over time due to routine wear and tear, especially if they are not properly maintained. Contaminated coolant can sometimes clog the water pump's passages, causing it to fail. There are several signs that a vehicle's water pump may be damaged, including:

  1. An overheating engine, marked by radiator steam, smoke, and/or an increasing temperature gauge
  2. Coolant leaks from the front or back of the engine
  3. Grinding noises from the engine
  4. Whining sounds that vary in pitch during acceleration or deceleration, often caused by a damaged pulley
  5. Squealing sounds, often from a worn shaft bearing
  6. Corroded coolant

Any of these signs may signal that your water pump is damaged or failing. If your vehicle is exhibiting one or more symptoms, you should take it to your auto repair shop immediately for inspection.

At Custom Complete Automotive, we offer a full range of heating and cooling repair services for vehicles of all types. We can diagnose and repair your water pump damage to help ensure you can continue to drive safely. If you think your vehicle's water pump may be malfunctioning, contact us today to schedule an appointment!

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About the Author
Eric Riddles

Eric Riddles is an ASE Certified Master Automobile Technician who has been working as an auto mechanic since 1998 and originally joined the team at Custom Complete Automotive in 2005. Eric has numerous certifications in various aspects of car repair and spent 10 years training the next generation of auto technicians at a local high school Auto Shop classroom.

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