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  1. #1
    Vintendo's Avatar
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    Talking 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    '97 Jeep Wrangler - Coolant leaking behind water pump pulley, guess I gotta get in their and change it? I'm a newbie, never did one. I looked online for diagrams and instructions, haven't found much, actually found too much but can anyone reccomend a site that would walk me through it? Tips or tricks from you guys? Anything specific to my year? I've been browsing through the forums quite a bit, some of you fellas are masterful, any help would do. Thanks much

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    tjlboise's Avatar
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    A water pump is a really easy and simple fix.
    First thing you wanna do is loosen your top and bottom alternator bolts. This will allow you to move it and take off your belt.
    Second you'll want to take the cap off your radiator for ventilation/draining.
    Next, find the lowermost hose connected to the water pump. You can either drain the coolant out of here (slightly more messy, but quicker and easier), or you can drain about half, or all, out of the petcock on the bottom of the radiator on the passenger side. Either way works fine. Its really up to you.
    Then, if you haven't already done so in the last step, remove the hoses.
    After that you're free to remove the bolts from the water pump itself.
    Make sure to scrape off all of the old gunk and gasket from where the old one came from. You want to get it as clean as possible.
    Then u you use high temp silicone on both surfaces (engine block, and new water pump) you want a good solid bead without any breaks all of the way around. At this point what works best for me is putting the gasket on the water pump itself, and then carefully placing it in its spot. Hold it there without letting it move while you hand tighten the bolts.
    Tighten the bolts back up with your socket wrench, and it installed.
    Put on the hoses and belt the same way you took them off, and your golden. Let it dry for a bit before you fill it back up with coolant, but when you do, make sure the vehicle is running so that it fill the engine back up and works out all of the air bubbles. This may take a few times of filling it, watching it go down, and filling it again until it doesn't go down anymore.
    Put the radiator cap back on, and you're ready to rock.
    Hope it helps. If you have any other questions, don't hesitate to ask.
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    P.S....do you have a serpentine belt or a regular one?
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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump






    CAUTION: All engines have a reverse (counter-clockwise) rotating water pump. The letter R is stamped into the back of the water pump impeller Reverse Rotating Water Pump - Typical to identify. Engines from previous model years, depending upon application, may be equipped with a forward (clockwise) rotating water pump. Installation of the wrong water pump will cause engine over heating.
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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    Quote Originally Posted by tjlboise View Post
    P.S....do you have a serpentine belt or a regular one?
    I am an idiot. I cannot answer that question. I only assumed that it
    was serpentine, but I do not know the difference

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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    Thank you for the swift response. Very helpful.

    I may have more questions when I dig in and get to work.

    Is all the work done from above the engine?

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    You are very welcome. anytime. Thats what we are all here for. And yes it is all done from the top, with the exception of draining the coolant from the bottom. The difference between a serpentine belt and a normal one, is kind of all in the name. A "normal belt" setup is one that just goes around all of the pulleys, while the serpentine belt sort of weaves in and out of them in a serpent like manner. The reason I ask this question, is that it will make all the difference in how the belt will come off. If it is in fact a serpentine belt, you will NOT be loosening the alternator to get it off. You will do this by using the tensioner pulley. But I can explain that to you just as easily if/when you find out which it is. Just let me know. Don't be intimidated in doing this fix at all. Its actually a good place for you to start on getting some mechanical skills.
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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    my 97 has a serpitine belt

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    So? Have you done it yet? How did it go?
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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    Actually yes, did it last night, took about 3-4 hrs. It was a pain to get around the power steering though, lost time messing with that. Amongst other things that you failed to mention in your first response, but thanks for the help.

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    tjlboise's Avatar
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    Wow....didn't really deserve that. Wth? You never really answered me about the serpentine belt. If you would have noticed, I mentioned that if you DID have one, it changes a few things.
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    That was unneccesary.
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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    I did mine about a year ago.Took me about 4 hours also.I hope you made some minor modifications to make any type of job in that area easier next time.What I did was take a dremal and cut a knock out on the bottom of the fan shroud so I can remove the shroud with out having to remove the fan first.I have seen other people cut the shroud in half then drill holes and use tie straps to put it back together.

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    tjlboise's Avatar
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    You guys must have some crazy stuff that I've never seen before. I've done quite a few water pumps in the comfort of a garage, as well as on the side of the road, and taking 4 hours is madness to me. I've also never had to remove a fan, or modify anything to get there. Looking at my jeep, it seems to be just about as straight forward as ever, but that's not to say that a newer model might be different. Even all of my subarus with their horizontal japanese engines only took about 20 minutes.
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    Oops* modify the fan shroud* ....of course you have to remove the fan and shroud
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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    Quote Originally Posted by tjlboise View Post
    You guys must have some crazy stuff that I've never seen before. I've done quite a few water pumps in the comfort of a garage, as well as on the side of the road, and taking 4 hours is madness to me. I've also never had to remove a fan, or modify anything to get there. Looking at my jeep, it seems to be just about as straight forward as ever, but that's not to say that a newer model might be different. Even all of my subarus with their horizontal japanese engines only took about 20 minutes.
    I was just messing with you man, no offence. The shroud came off first, then the fan, loosened the tensioner, took off the other idle pulley to get to the clamp on the hose to the heater. This hose was rusted pretty bad, shouldve changed it but didnt. Had a heck of a time bending the power steering mount out of the way to get under it to mount the new waterpump. I just got hung up on everything possible, including having a case of beer drop out on me and lost 3/4 of the beer bottles.

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    Ouch!! Loosing beer is the worst...at least you got it all taken care of though. Im glad it all ended up working out.
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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    ha ha ha, the beer falling all over. i bet every one was jumping out of hteir chair to save them, ha ha ha. i can see it in my head now...... it would be the same with my friends when i was doing something like swapping the motor in one of the bmws..... picture it "hey guys, the motor is tipping, the motor is tipping!!!!!!!!!" and then my friends "oh crap, the beer is going to get squished, grab it!!!!" and then me with my hand between the motor and the radiator support or something, ha ha ha
    I love my old jeep.

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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    Yay..this is what I have to do...My boyfriend wants me to have my mechanic replace it...but this time of year I would rather save the money and do it myself.... It doesnt look that hard...nor seem that hard.... its just winter here and gets dark pretty early and I have to work...

    Oh well...I will do it with my brothers help, I already have the parts....
    How much anitfreeze will it need to fill it back up...I have two jugs of concentrate (yes I know i have to dilute it)..I just want to make sure I have enough.

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    superj's Avatar
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    Re: 1997 Jeep Wrangler Water Pump

    You have enough
    I love my old jeep.

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