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Water pump failure at 61,000 miles

3643 Views 15 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  jklotz10
Just picked up my car from the dealership this morning, had to have a new water pump installed at just 61,000 miles.

Noticed a chirping noise from my belt under the hood last week. Heard it some more this week so I pulled it into the garage and popped the hood and let it idle for a while. Heard the chirping noise then a couple times a loud shrieking/howling sound that lasted 5-10 seconds then went silent. Not good! Shut it off, checked the belt, then pulled on all my pulleys. All were solid until I got to the water pump pulley. I could literally wobble the pulley from side to side about 1/4" to 1/2"! Really not good! :SHOCKED:

I figured the bearings were going out and causing the shaft to wobble around causing that shrieking sound and then with the pulley wobbling causing the belt to chirp due to misalignment of the pulleys.

Took the day off and drove it up to the dealership and told them the deal. They looked at it later that day and then had it finished this morning. They said it was the water pump, bearing failure. Replaced it with a new water pump and all new coolant and that was that!

Came to pick it up, said I owed $395. :SHOCKED: Sorry I don't think so! Pulled up the Chrysler website and under powertrain warranty it said "...internal engine components, oil pump, WATER PUMP...". The lady says oh okay, let me check what the service tech put in the system for the invoice. Turns out he fat-fingered the code and used the wrong code. She put the correct code in the system and the bill went to $0. That's better! :smileup:

So, if there is any takeaway from my story, please ensure you check your belt and pulleys every oil change. Make sure the pulleys are all straight with no play, no wobbling, etc. If I had let that go much longer I might have been stranded on the side of the road.

Just glad to get my car back today and that it was covered under warranty!
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I'm surprised it went out that soon. Glad it was covered for you.
Good observation, Carl! And you even got your 5 year Coolant Change along with it.

Also the knowledge that you had about your powertrain warranty saved youa bunch. Wonder how many owners let that pass due to lack of knowledge or go to some other place to have pieces like that replaced?
Carl, so glad this all turned out for you. Why do they make so many mistakes when it comes to warranty? They even tried to charge me $20 to replace two lug nuts, until I had to remind them they were covered under warranty. Your car is going to be like new this spring!!
I know, me too. Usually water pumps go for at least 100,000 miles or more. Don't think I ever replaced the one in my S-10 with 145,000 miles on it.

Oh well, might have just been a defective one or something. At least it was covered under warranty.

Yes and I got my coolant changed for free as well, always a plus!

You have to be adamant about things like warranty coverage it seems. I honestly believe it was just a typo on the service tech's part, they are a pretty good dealership and usually straightforward. But it always pays to check into things ahead of time.
Its really strange how those seemingly innocent mistakes always work against the customer. Glad things worked out for you.
Glad you were covered... I can imagine someone not as informed as you getting burned.
Too bad about the water pump, but I'm glad you were up on your warranty info and didn't have to pay for a covered part. A lot of folks out there would have no doubt just paid that bill never realizing it was covered.
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I recall someone else out here had a water pump go last year. I forget how many miles.
Glad you got it fixed at zero cost, but it sux that it went this soon.
Haha good point, the "honest" mistakes do seem to work against the customer in most cases don't they? Never hurts to be informed ahead of time.

I agree, sucks that it went out so early at 61,000 miles but I'm glad it went out this year rather than next year since I'll be out of warranty coverage next January.
I recall someone else out here had a water pump go last year. I forget how many miles.
Glad you got it fixed at zero cost, but it sux that it went this soon.
That was probably me. When I had the timing chain re-call done (March, 2014), the tech. noticed coolant on the under side of the water pump. It was replaced under warranty (easy job since it had to be removed for the re-call).
Oh yea, the mileage was 29,219.
Sounds like some of these water pumps are good and others go bad much sooner. 30,000 miles is not long at all for a water pump.

I never noticed mine leaking, but the bearings were clearly getting chewed up because the pulley and shaft could wobble around pretty good just moving it by hand. I think the belt tension helped to keep the pulley somewhat straight while running.

At some point the bearings would have worn so much that it would probably chew through the seal and out would come all the coolant, all over the belt, probably make the belt slip off the pulleys and then it'd be sitting on the shoulder waiting for a tow truck time haha!
Glad to hear it worked out for you (and you didn't let the dealer pull a fast one ... not that they'd have anything to gain, ... unless they were going to double-dip).

I'm told my (son's) PT Cruiser is on the verge of needing a water pump, short of 90K. My other son bought a used Sebring (2.7L) that needed one at 80K. Of the many 100K+ cars I've owned so far (no Mopars), none has ever needed one before 150K.

I guess the good news is, since I'm putting low miles on my Challenger, it should be a long time before I wonder if I should've bought the extended warranty ... and, if it turns out that way, maybe what I heard all my life is true. (But, I remain optimistic. I had a friend whose '75 Monaco went over 300K miles without so much as a head gasket. Dunno how many water pumps, though. ;) )
Yep, glad I found it before it left me stranded and glad I got it covered under warranty. Got the car washed up today after work, put my LMI Frankentake IV back on, and loaded my Hemifever tune back on. Now all is well again!

Maybe Mopar uses cheaper water pumps or something? My S-10 had 145,000 miles on it when I sold it and never replaced any of the engine accessories.

Either way, I'm not complaining, should be good for a long time now and it didn't cost me anything so it's all good.

I would just be sure to check your belt/pulleys now and then just to be sure everything is cool. That water pump pulley was awfully wobbly, glad it didn't give out on me before taking it to the dealer, that would have sucked big time!
Well, after only 23,000 miles my 2018 R/T lost it's first water pump (frog croaking bearing sound, no leaks or CEL). My warranty's been toast for quite some time (years and mods), so this is going to be out of pocket. Does anyone know how many hours labor it takes to replace one of these on a 5.7? Seems rather cut and dry. Thanks!
I would think this would be a two hour job for a qualified mechanic.
Maybe three hours for a backyard guy with a beer break between removal of old one and installation of new one.
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