Friday, May 29, 2009

In The Dumps Over Water Pumps

Two days ago I got back here after riding my bike, stepped out of my van to hear a hissing noise mixed in with a sputtering spitting noise. This can't be a good thing, I thought.

I tried to open the hood, but couldn't. I tried to pry it open with a screwdriver. I will admit I am not mechanically inclined. Eventually I got the hood open. The first thing I did then was spray lubricant on the hood latching mechanism. I find spraying lubricant on something that is misbehaving is always my first go to solution. And once more it worked. Now the hood pops open effortlessly.

Now, what did I find under the hood. Well, there was a big hose from which a little pinprick of a hole was allowing water to escape. I went to an auto parts store and got a new hose. Then I found my mechanically inclined friend with tools, Sean, and he replaced the hose. All was hunky dory again.

Until yesterday. On my way back from Arlington I stopped for a walk at the Village Creek Natural Historic Area. When I stepped out of the vehicle I didn't like what I was smelling. I popped up the hood to see water oozing from a new location.

On the drive back here, after the walk, the engine temperature gauge began to move towards HOT during the short 3 miles back here. When I got here, I again lifted the hood to see water oozing from something near the bottom of the engine.

So, I called Juan, another mechanical guy I know and described what I saw. Juan told me my water pump is shot. He's going to replace it for me on Saturday.

It is a good thing to know mechanically minded people. My first car was a 65 Mustang Fastback. Worth a fortune now if in good condition. I got it used for $1,150. That car was nothing but trouble, but it was easy to work on, unlike these complicated modern vehicles.

Over the course of driving that Mustang I replaced the shocks, the carburetor, the fuel pump, installed a sound system,fixed the radiator, did the tuneups and even replaced the water pump. It was all relatively easy to do. But I hated doing it. It's been years since I've worked on a car.

I didn't even know that it was the water pump that was leaking that I was looking at on this currently disabled vehicle.


twister said...

I feel your pain. If you're flush you might consider getting a new water pump or at least one w/ a lifetime replacement warranty (if there is one). In my experience a rebuilt water pump will begin to fail in a year or so. It's pretty easy to tell when they are about to your hood with the engine running and if the water pump is making a slight thunk thunk noise it's a pretty sure thing you better delay your trip to Red Rocks. Sorry, enough pontificating on a subject on which I know very little. Good luck with your vexations.

Durango said...

I am pretty sure the water pump problem will be fixed tomorrow. I hope. Thanks for the good luck wishes.