Coolant Drip from Harmonic Balancer ... Water Pump?

OxLibertySport

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2005 Liberty 4x4 ... 62k miles. It's basically a spare ride nowadays, I don't drive it very often. However, last week, I had to drive it everyday as I had to do some work on my primary.

Anyway, after being parked again for a day or so, I noticed a drip on the driveway. Looked underneath and I see one little drip from the bottom of the harmonic balancer. It's orange, so I know its coolant. Following it, the trail runs half way round to to the top of the Harmonic Balancer ... I can't see much else past there.

So, I guess I'm looking at a water pump replacement?? Mine has the "heavy-duty cooling" with the two fans, so it'll be a real joy to get to.
 

Daily KJ

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2005 Liberty 4x4 ... 62k miles. It's basically a spare ride nowadays, I don't drive it very often. However, last week, I had to drive it everyday as I had to do some work on my primary.

Anyway, after being parked again for a day or so, I noticed a drip on the driveway. Looked underneath and I see one little drip from the bottom of the harmonic balancer. It's orange, so I know its coolant. Following it, the trail runs half way round to to the top of the Harmonic Balancer ... I can't see much else past there.

So, I guess I'm looking at a water pump replacement?? Mine has the "heavy-duty cooling" with the two fans, so it'll be a real joy to get to.
Yes, is water pump. As you remove the bolts, place them in their corresponding position on the new pump laying on your workbench, then transfer them over to the removed pump when it is out. Set new pump in place and install bolts accordingly from your old pump template. The bolts are various lengths. I would also take the opportunity to replace the idler pulley at same time. Not much $ and it will eventually fail leaving you with no water pump and no alternator which is a bad way to be on the freeway.
 
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Very easy to replace the water pump, especially of you have electronic cooling fan. Slip belt off, unbolt old pump, bolt new one in and re-attach/bleed everything.

If possible try to use a pump that has a metal impeller, the plastic ones are sometimes prone to cracking.

I used a Gates #43263M When I replaced my pump due to a failed gasket.
 

tommudd

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Yes, is water pump. As you remove the bolts, place them in their corresponding position on the new pump laying on your workbench, then transfer them over to the removed pump when it is out. Set new pump in place and install bolts accordingly from your old pump template. The bolts are various lengths. I would also take the opportunity to replace the idler pulley at same time. Not much $ and it will eventually fail leaving you with no water pump and no alternator which is a bad way to be on the freeway.
PLUS new serp belt
 

OxLibertySport

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Yeah ... mechanical fan here; so, lot's to take off. I just replaced the tensioner and belt less that 1k miles ago - didn't need it, purely preventative. I suspect I'll replace the stat while I'm in there. Joy. =/
 

OxLibertySport

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If possible try to use a pump that has a metal impeller, the plastic ones are sometimes prone to cracking.

I used a Gates #43263M When I replaced my pump due to a failed gasket.

A bit of a rant here mixed with some personal opinions ... so, I got my parts in (Rockauto) for this job - I went with all Gates brand stuff except for the upper & lower hoses which I got from the dealer (Mopar):

GATES CO34753 Thermostat Housing / Water Outlet
GATES 43263M Water Pump
GATES 33919 Thermostat

Every single dang Gates part was MADE IN CHINA. ****** off - I sent it all back & just ordered Mopar stuff from Amazon. The Mopar water pump will have a plastic impeller, but at-least it's something I can feel OK about.
 

tommudd

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A bit of a rant here mixed with some personal opinions ... so, I got my parts in (Rockauto) for this job - I went with all Gates brand stuff except for the upper & lower hoses which I got from the dealer (Mopar):

GATES CO34753 Thermostat Housing / Water Outlet
GATES 43263M Water Pump
GATES 33919 Thermostat

Every single dang Gates part was MADE IN CHINA. ****** off - I sent it all back & just ordered Mopar stuff from Amazon. The Mopar water pump will have a plastic impeller, but at-least it's something I can feel OK about.
MOPAR thermostat only, works best every time
Glad you sent it back , but the plastic impeller ........................
 

OxLibertySport

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Well, I was knee-deep into the water pump replacement & got stopped cold. I think I see the cause of the leak ... what I'll call pretty moderate pitting / aluminum corrosion at the sealing surface. 2005 w/ only 62k miles! Looking on the water pump seal side, you can literally see the aluminum that came off with it. Some coolant had been getting to the bolts as well .. a few were tough to get out.

I got the angle die grinder out with a medium, then a fine pad to clean the surface. I guess I'm going to have to find some way to dig the corrosion out - and, I'll likely fill it with JB Weld ... unless there are other suggestions. Aint no way the new seal is going to hold with the pitting as-is!

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Johnny O

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I’d clean out the corrosion with a dremel, then use the JB weld putty stick to fill it. That and a honing block and it’s good as new and seal ready. The putty is easier to use in my opinion over the traditional JB weld semi fluid.
 

OxLibertySport

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I’d clean out the corrosion with a dremel, then use the JB weld putty stick to fill it. That and a honing block and it’s good as new and seal ready. The putty is easier to use in my opinion over the traditional JB weld semi fluid.

Yeah, that was the plan. My worry is that, in my experience, this type of work w/ a Dremel needs to be done with "a level of precision" along with the sanding afterwards ~ else additional areas of the sealing surface could be damaged. This area is difficult to reach & I'm not so sure I can maintain "precision". I might just use a pick & go with it.

I don't have a honing block - I hoped to get the JB Weld smooth enough with at razor applicator & then to some minor leveling w/ 1000 grit.
 

Johnny O

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Yeah, that was the plan. My worry is that, in my experience, this type of work w/ a Dremel needs to be done with "a level of precision" along with the sanding afterwards ~ else additional areas of the sealing surface could be damaged. This area is difficult to reach & I'm not so sure I can maintain "precision". I might just use a pick & go with it.

I don't have a honing block - I hoped to get the JB Weld smooth enough with at razor applicator & then to some minor leveling w/ 1000 grit.
I would use the SS wire brush attachment to get the worst of it. Then I would go in with a good quality rust converter like Permatex and a small plait brush. Once that's dry, I'd putty it up. For surface prep, I'd give it a light coat of black primer to use as an indicator. Then using on of those sanding block sponge thingies, I would carefully sand down the excess putty. The primer will indicate any low spots. Once you get it smoothed down to the sealing surface level, I'd hit any low spots gently with the Dremel wire wheel and re -putty them. Once everything is smooth and even, I'd use either a honing block or a fine grit knife sharping stone (3k ish grit) and polish the entire sealing surface to mirror perfection. Then I would seal it up with the proper gasket and permatex Indian Head Gasket shellac.
 

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I recommend felpro gasket when you reassemble, had an early leak on a new water pump, good quality aftermarket gasket solved it. The felpro had almost 5mm of lip sticking out taller than the stock gasket and that all compressed when torqued down, made a big difference for very cold climate
 

Johnny O

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I recommend felpro gasket when you reassemble, had an early leak on a new water pump, good quality aftermarket gasket solved it. The felpro had almost 5mm of lip sticking out taller than the stock gasket and that all compressed when torqued down, made a big difference for very cold climate
Ah! Couldn’t remember the brand name! Yeah, Fel-pro!!!
 

OxLibertySport

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Here's what I have after cleaning all the corrosion out (best I could anyway) ... the electrolysis really took a toll, right on the seal line at that. Guess that's payment for the low-mileage on my Liberty ... it's did lot's of sitting. I'll be hitting it with some JB Weld next & hoping for the best ~ not too interested in having to change the entire front cover.

I have a new MOPAR water pump that'll be going back on. I took the advice and picked up a Fel-Pro 35655 gasket; although, the new pump came with a new gasket already installed. The Fel-Pro looks identical, just a little darker "blue" and it "seems" to be a tad firmer. I plan on using the Fel-Pro vs. the Mopar gasket.

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JeepJeepster

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Gotta wonder if not changing the antifreeze at the recommended intervals and the long periods of sitting caused that. When I changed my water pump, the pump itself had some pitting like that but the engine surface was fine. Ive changed the antifreeze twice since it was new in 04... Probably waited too long the first go around.
 

uss2defiant

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same thing happened to me but not as severe as yours.
I use Jb weld and some painters tape to keep it in place.
I chose to overfill then sand it down flat to be flushed with the rest of the mating surface.
I've had to do this about 4-5 years ago and so far still holding.

My waterpump was from NAPA

Make sure not to mix up the epoxy mixing ratios!

Good luck
 

uss2defiant

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oh I forgot to mention that i did put a very small bead of RTV on the outside of the gasket.
So from the outside of the WP to the inside, you have the RTV followed by the gasket.
Basically, on the edge of the WP and a thin layer of RTV on the gasket.
I did this for extra insurance although it may not be needed but RTV forms around uneven surface better than the gasket would IMHO
 
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OxLibertySport

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oh I forgot to mention that i did put a very small bead of RTV on the outside of the gasket.
So from the outside of the WP to the inside, you have the RTV followed by the gasket.
Basically, on the edge of the WP and a thin layer of RTV on the gasket.
I did this for extra insurance although it may not be needed but RTV forms around uneven surface better than the gasket would IMHO

I've considered this; but, most sources recommend avoiding RTV at the water pump at all costs. Regardless, like you, I worry that the designed gasket may not fill the imperfections that I'll obviously have now.

So, you put a thin bead on the gasket itself "and" on the outer edge the sealing surface on the water pump side?
 
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