97 Ford Contour overheating - waterpump?

Old 04-16-07, 06:21 AM
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97 Ford Contour overheating - waterpump?

I have a 97 Ford Contour, 2.5 V6, Auto w/ air. The car would overheat pretty quickly. The electric fan comes on, enough fluid in system. I just replaced the thermostat and still have same problem. I am thinking it is the waterpump - the hoses felt very cool even while the temp gauge was showing almost over-heating, also no heat from the cabin heater - so my guess is no water circulation.

A couple of questions:

How do I make sure it is the waterpump before I do this job?
The only times I've ever replaced a wp before was when they were leaking, I've never seen one stop working without leaking - is this a common problem?
Are there any tricks to removing/installing this? I've seen one on-line procedure (Auto-Zone) and it looks pretty easy - is it? (I've seen wp removal instructions for my Caravan that failed to mention a small item like having to remove the entire INTAKE MANIFOLD in order to get to the WP bolts, so I am never sure what to believe).
What about the wp bolts? The on-line procedure says that they HAVE TO BE REPLACED - is that really true? Are they usually included with the wp?
How about air in the system, how do I bleed the air out of the system? I know some cars do need special air bleeding, is this necessary for my car?

As always, thanks!

Old 04-16-07, 08:33 AM
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I see you got no reply yet so I will answer 1 question to get you started until others can answer the specifics
Test the pump by taking off the belt and spinning it by hand. It will likely be very easy to spin. The shaft shears off and just the hub turns and the pump inside does not turn. Flip it back and forth in you fingers and you should notice that there is no weight to it on the inside.
Happens a fair bit but not as much as leaking does.
Another test would be to take the top hose off the rad and start it.
Coolant should just be all over the place.
I had a bad thermostat once and got a new one and it did the same thing so I put another new one in and it worked. Freak bad luck.
For a test could just leave the stat out and try it.
Old 04-16-07, 05:09 PM
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Got burned on the first one of these I came in contact with.............The water pump on this unit is in the BACK of the engine run by it's own little "V" belt.........not in the front where you'd think it would be
Old 04-16-07, 09:17 PM
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and one of the simplest things that people fail to change that causes alot of problems is the rad cap...

and you may have also installed a faulty thermostat...

most time when a water pump fails it starts peeing out the bottom of the waterpump...

you can also test to see if your waterpump is working is to open the rad cap when the car is cold...start it..... let it idle til it gets warm and look down the rad to see if there is coolant movement
Old 10-16-07, 03:33 PM
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Water pump should weep if it lets go.
Thermostat might be in backwards-no circulation.
Start there. Or, there might be massive air lock in the system from draining coolant.
1.Place vehicle on jack stands.
2.Remove cap on expansion tank-there is no rap cap on a Contour.
3.Start engine and check hoses for warmth and circulation. Massage hoses as well by hand.
4.Watch temp, don't over-heat motor.
5.Check coolant level-tank should be 1/2 full at operating temp.
Old 10-16-07, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by shinrich View Post
I've never seen one stop working without leaking - is this a common problem?
Not so much on a Contour. I've seen quite a few 3.0L Taurus water pumps with the vanes corroded off.

What about the wp bolts? The on-line procedure says that they HAVE TO BE REPLACED - is that really true? Are they usually included with the wp?
Replace them. They are torque to yield bolts. I don't know if they'll come with the pump itself, or even if they're available aftermarket.

Probably wouldn't be a bad idea to replace the water pump belt while you're in there.
Old 10-17-07, 10:56 AM
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Six month old thread, guys.

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