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Old 06-11-2011, 10:00 AM   #1
WBN3's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Baytown, TX
Posts: 124
Water pump impeller shot

Folks - posted this in follow-up to another thread, but wondered if anyone had seen this kind of damage to a water pump impeller before.

A little closer look:

I bought this TJ used with 186k miles on it, the guy said he had just changed the radiator out. After flushing the heater core to get it to heat up (which didn't work), I eventually found this problem. The core was full of junk and had presumably been stagnant for quite some time, but this pump didn't put up enough pressure to push water through it even after I flushed it (from both directions). I fear that it is going to spring a leak when I put the new pump on... I've seen videos of that job, and I may run screaming into the hills if I have to do it.

Seriously, though - without much of an impeller, I'm surprised the engine wasn't overheating. We don't take very long trips in it, my son just uses it as his daily driver to school and around town. Wonder if anyone has seen this? Are there any issues it might cause with cooling passages on the block not getting good flow? Am I going to see water leaks everywhere when I put the new pump on it?

Thanks in advance for any recommendations.

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Old 06-11-2011, 07:31 PM   #2
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Lakeland FL and Hooversville PA
Posts: 2,131
Hmm, seeing that both pump housings aren't identical, it could be that a cheap overseas rebuilt pump was once used. Poor metal quality and poor coolant condition could cause the impeller to rust and wear away, and would be accelerated by a bunch of trash flowing around in the coolant.

97 Sahara, 74 Renegade, 72 CJ5, 55 Willy's (the Beast) Boss 302, 6:34 gearing, Bose 901 speakers.
God I miss that Jeep. Forgot the kinda Jeep, 80 SX4.
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Old 06-11-2011, 10:17 PM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Baytown, TX
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The one I put on it is an aftermarket from AutoZone. Here is a picture of the pump I took off... can you tell whether it is OEM or reman? My son thought the little star on the right looked like the Chrysler logo...

And a close-up of the casting...

Just wondering... someone else told me the freeze plugs are probably not far from failure, based on the amount of corrosion that must have taken place to damage that impeller. I have also heard that most of the damage could've been cavitation rather than chemistry... hard to know what to believe.
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coolant , engine , water pump

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