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How Car Stuff Works

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Water Pump and How it Works

When you think of your car’s water pump, think of it as you’re the heart of your car’s cooling system. In simplest terms, its job is to continuously circulate engine coolant through the cooling system from the radiator to the engine and back. In doing so, you can enjoy the comfort of a nice and cool car in the midst of a record setting heat-wave.

The water pump in your vehicle takes its power from the engine, which fuels the energy it needs to work properly. It generally operates through a belt and pulley, but there are others that operate via a gear and chain. The power that the pump generates from the engine is transferred to a shaft on which there is an impeller.

It is the impeller’s job to spin and circulate the coolant throughout your car. You can think of the impeller as being similar to that of a propeller making a boat or airplane move.
When you put the shaft and impeller together, they spin on a sealed bearing. You have to be extremely observant, because this sealed bearing is the part of the car’s water pump that does wear out.

The part that you can be observant about is leaking coolant. The signs of a worn out bearing is either leaking coolant or an unusual noise, which is the result of the bearing losing its way. A wet engine or a coolant sob through your car’s vent are also signs that your water pump may be going bad.

If you notice any of these signs, it is necessary to get your water pump replaced. You will know if your water pump is functioning properly aside from these signs as well, because it is either working or it is not. What you may want to consider, though, is replacing your water pump when surrounding systems have to be replaced. The reason for this is because often times surrounding systems have to be removed just to get to the water pump, which can certainly be a hassle.

Another time you may go about replacing your car’s water pump is when the cooling system is due for a major service, such as a radiator replacement or removal. This is ideal because the first step in replacing the water pump is draining the coolant. It makes life a lot easier if the radiator is removed for added working convenience.

So the next time you are cruising down the street on a hot summer day and you are not getting any cold air, make sure to check the water pump. Being observant and paying attention to any unusual noises coming from the car’s vents and looking for a wet engine can be great ways to identify if you have a leaking coolant. If this is the case, it’s time to take in your car’s water pump and get it replaced.





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