: N* water pump?

08-31-06, 05:40 PM
Two days ago the water pump on my 2001 Deville froze and took out the drive pulley, tensioner pulley and belt with no warning. The car has 56,000 miles on it and has never given me any problems before this. After reading some other posts on this site ( And finding out the local Cadillac daeler wanted $850.00 to repair! ) I decided to repair it myself. I've never had problems fixing any vehicle, from my first car which was a Model A to the last vehicle I worked on which was a 2002 Freightliner, I just wondered who came up with the idea for this pump? Getting it out was knuckel busting! I read about all the posts on this site and thought it was easy but man I'm glad I spent the last 10 years in truck repairs! I must admit that installing the new pump went a lot easier than taking the old one out and I had the best tools which my buddy from Snap-On loaned me but never again! My question is, after you pay 40 some thousand for a Cadillac, and do everything you can to maintain the car according to Cadillac's edics, you should get better bang for your bucks than this.

Never have I had a water pump on any car I have owned has faled this soon! and I've driven most cars I've owned for over 200,000 miles before I bought a new one. One other gripe was that the local Caddy dealer didn't even have the parts in stock to sell me to do the job. I had to go to a Chevy dealer to buy the drive pulley and to the local Advance Auto to get the rest!

Anybody else out there have problems with these pumps and what other problems can I expect from the engine over heating that I should worry about now.

08-31-06, 08:46 PM
Your expirience is not the norm. I had twice that milage on my '97 and never touched the pump and I thionk other have had way more than that. When they do go, they usually leak from the shaft seal and almost never sieze. Are you sure it was the pump that siezed and not the tensioner pully?

09-01-06, 09:04 AM
I'm sure it was the pump. I could not even turn it with a 24 inch wrench clamped on it. I to have never had a pump go out with out at least some warning (a leak or noise ) this thing never leaked even after it froze up.

09-02-06, 07:03 AM
Had mine go on me @ about 112,000 miles, shortly after I bought the car used with 103,000 miles on it. No problems since. 95 SLS

09-02-06, 11:23 PM
Water pump failures like you describe are pretty rare. Search thru the forum discussions and you can see that. I'm sure that is of little consolation to you since yours did fail it sounds like but it is very unusual at those miles.

Just out of curiousity what was so hard about changing the water pump? In my experience the water pump on a Northstar like yours is one of the easiest pumps in the world to change. Did you have problems accessing the pump, removing the pump cartridge from the water crossover housing itself with the special tool or what was so difficult?

I assume you knew ahead of time about the special socket/tool to unclock the water pump cartridge from the water crossover housing and that it unclocks in a left-handed fashion?

09-03-06, 06:37 AM
Getting it out of the crossover was the hardest. The tool I used was loaned to me by the local Snap-On rep. I almost got to the point I was ready to use an impact wrench on it but decided I didn't want to risk breaking the tabs in the housing. When it did let go it happened so fast I was sure something had broken but it didn't. The car is running fine now. The only other problem seems to be a pesky code P0443 that comes and goes. That started with me getting a message saying the fuel cap was loose and once that went away I got a code P0442. I took it to the Cadillac dealer and they replaced the cap and the code went away for about a month but now I'm getting the P0443 code. I checked the plug to the solenoid and the vacuum lines to it but no luck there. Any idea where to look next?

09-03-06, 08:51 AM
I had 197000 on my 96 before my waterpump went out on me. My uncle has 285,000 and has never replaced his on the 95 concours.

09-03-06, 03:26 PM
definately not a common problem at all, it never even really comes up on the forum.

09-05-06, 10:57 PM
I wonder if there was an internal failure yet unknown and something is jammed in the pump. If its that tight I doubt it's the bearing. And if it never leaked I doubt it's the bearing.

09-17-06, 12:08 PM
The only thing about the old pump that was bad was the impeller. It looked like the welds where it attached to the shaft were bad and most appeared to be just a spot weld that let go. When they let go the impeller jammed the whole thing up in the housing. After I got the pump out the shaft turned freely.

09-17-06, 10:25 PM
My 94 had the green coolant and i HAD to use an impact wrench as my 3 foot cheater bar started bending prongs on the socket.....

I got many....many.... posters saying how easy it was to replace theirs and how i must not have known what i was doing......and must not know anything about mechanics because they got lucky and it came right out.....

this after having changed my waterpump on my vortec 350....which was a piece of cake.....just a bunch of time in removing stuff......

So....no matter how much you tell these guys how hard it was.......they wont believe you and call u stupid......

The fact is mine was a major PITA!!!!! And after all that the pump wasnt leaking anyhow.....it was the green coolant connector under the EGR......

09-17-06, 10:46 PM
Generally it IS easy, but I have heard of a few others saying the same thing. The common denominator as I recall is green coolant. They seem to have gotten corroded in place. I don't recall your post, but I certainly hope no one called you stupid for stating you expirience.

09-17-06, 11:54 PM
I also have read all of the replies of people who had a really hard time getting the old pump out. I decided to tackle it when the engine was out for timeserting / headgaskets and was prepared for battle. Sprayed it with PB Blaster and let it soak for a couple of days. Put the socket on my longest breaker bar and was ready to use a pipe on the end also. When I lined the socket up on the old pump and went to push the pump moved immediately with only medium pressure. Had it out in just a few seconds. The new one went back in the exact same way.

Mine was not bad but with 123,000 on it and it being out of the car it seemed like a good time to take care of it.

Wow! I was so relieved not to have to fight that monster on top of the other stuff I was working on at the time.

Wish that yours had gone better.

09-24-06, 03:27 AM
just a question guys when you replaced your pumps did any of you have a squealing or slight knockin noise coming from under the hood cuz i have one on my car and i'm starting to think it's a belt tensioner, idler arm pully or the impeller in the pump starting to go

10-05-06, 05:03 PM
OK I'm new to this forum but not to the brand, I own identical twin 1998 SLSs one with 50K and the other with 70K. I just sold my 96 which I loved with 100K on it. The one with 70 K has a WP shaft seal leak and it looks like a pretty straight fwd R&R. After reading all the theads, I know where i can get the tool and will use the pellets in the upper hose and the factory coolant.

What i don't know is from where do you drain the system (hose or petcock) and how much needs to be drained before its below the level of the water pump?

10-05-06, 07:45 PM
You could drain it from either, but since you have to pull the hose anyway, why not just drain it from there, unless of coarse you are going to do a complete coolant change. Then the drain plug is the lowest point and you may get more coolant out of the system from there.

10-07-06, 01:23 PM
Water pump is not a common issue but the overheating is another story. Read all the forum entries about overheating, head gasket, coolant loss etc. Get ready for a head gasket problem, no joke. It's a big club.

10-10-06, 10:47 AM
Thanks for the replys,
On both my 98s I don't have any overheating issues, but this one is leaking externally (leaving small puddle on mu garage floor) and after removing the lower valance to inspect, there is a definite moisture trail comming from the inside of the water pump pully sheavea nd nowhere else. Is atht not a classic indicator of a failure of the shaft seal in the water pump?

10-10-06, 01:34 PM
Thanks for the replys,
On both my 98s I don't have any overheating issues, but this one is leaking externally (leaving small puddle on mu garage floor) and after removing the lower valance to inspect, there is a definite moisture trail comming from the inside of the water pump pully sheavea nd nowhere else. Is atht not a classic indicator of a failure of the shaft seal in the water pump?

Yep. Sounds like a new water pump is on the horizon for you.