Water pump coolant leak

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Scott6T6
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Joined: Mon Apr 20, 2020 11:36 pm

Water pump coolant leak

Post by Scott6T6 »

Anyone ever experience a water pump leaking at the rear access cover?
Last fall I noticed a small spot of coolant on the cardboard sheet I keep under the engine in my '66 Town Landau. I slid under the car to investigate and spotted a drop of coolant at the bottom of the access cover on the back of the water pump. It wasn't leaking prior to this.
It's a slow leak, I may have lost 1/4 cup of coolant over a six month period. The culprit is most likely a dried out gasket.
Aside from this my water pump seems to function just fine. It's quiet. There's no play in the shaft. The car has only 22,250 miles on it, so I believe there should still be plenty of life in that old pump.
I did obtain an new gasket for the rear access cover, but obviously the water pump will need to be removed to install it.
I'm betting you guys are going to tell me if I have to remove the water pump then I should replace/rebuild it.
Comments?
Advice?
Thanks in advance.
Scott
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jtschug
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Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2015 1:33 pm

Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by jtschug »

Usually, they start leaking from the weep hole under the shaft bearing.

Leaks can travel, so it is hard to be sure where they are coming from. I would probably get it rebuilt. There is a lot of junk out there, so work with a reputable supplier.

RAVEN
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Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by RAVEN »

Scott, I tend to think if you have kept up with coolant changes over the years, no weeping in the bypass seal hole, and have routinely exercised the motor to keep the pump shaft cycled, I would just replace the gasket.
I will comment that upon removing the back cover and inspecting the impeller that may change my mind. Make sure you check the cover plate for an erosion trace at the leak point.
CDN Member since 1975 #2086
Flock: 1964 Landau Original Family Owned
1964 Sr Convertible "RAVEN"
Past: 2003 Blk Lab "RAVEN" "RIP"Nov 15/17
1964 Lincoln vin4Y86N00007
1964 Red Convertible

OZZY Stewie
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Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by OZZY Stewie »

On my 64 the cover plate was just plain steel and developed a pin hole leak. Although I had a spare pump I thought I would have a go and replace the cover and gasket. That didn’t work because every bolt holding the cover sheared off.
So, out with the new pump and away I went.
Stewie in OZ
1964 Ford Thunderbird Landau
And I'm living the dream!!!

sleeper bird
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Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by sleeper bird »

if i were to just change the gasket,it would probably start leaking from the weep hole.If its got to come out id replace it the whole pump.

RAVEN
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Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by RAVEN »

If changing the pump, I would get the original rebuilt instead of swapping it out, as the casting date would possibly be wrong for a VERY low mileage ORIGINAL car.
Now that I know about the pump, it would be the first thing I would look for on the concourse field, if shown. :multi:

To all; Scott, as I, are very ORIGINAL type guys and try to be as accurate as possible when it comes to our cars. FYI

Wally
CDN Member since 1975 #2086
Flock: 1964 Landau Original Family Owned
1964 Sr Convertible "RAVEN"
Past: 2003 Blk Lab "RAVEN" "RIP"Nov 15/17
1964 Lincoln vin4Y86N00007
1964 Red Convertible

Scott6T6
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Joined: Mon Apr 20, 2020 11:36 pm

Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by Scott6T6 »

Thanks for the input everyone. Honestly, I've been reluctant to replace just that rear gasket. That's why I brought this up here on the forum.

If the pump must be removed from the engine, then of course there's no better time to replace/rebuild it. I do not want to have to remove it twice!
With that thought in mind, does anyone know of a reputable place that rebuilds water pumps? So far I have not been able to come up with any leads.
I've asked a number of local "car guys" and just got a lot of blank stares!

Of course I'd prefer to have my original C6AE - 8505-B pump rebuilt. Like Wally said, for guys like us it's very important to have the correct OEM pump with the proper casting date and engineering number.

I have managed to locate a few rebuilt C6AE -8505-B water pumps online, but none of them have the May '66 casting date which is proper for my car. Prices are all over the place!

RAVEN
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Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by RAVEN »

Scott, try White Post restorations they do brake cylinders and masters, maybe pumps too.
I had a reported good guy local to me, but after he destroyed a # matching water pump, and then a rebuilt M/C after a year I will not recommend him.
I am in the process of getting another pump done, but doing research first.
A place I have heard of and have so far been checking them out with good feedback is
ROKO SERVICE LTD, in Vernon B.C., about 20 miles north of Kelona. 1 800 663 5412. A local Tbird member I know who lives near there has asked around and with good response back of quality.
It's a start, but no guarantees.
Good luck, if you find a good guy let me know, I may need the info back

W
CDN Member since 1975 #2086
Flock: 1964 Landau Original Family Owned
1964 Sr Convertible "RAVEN"
Past: 2003 Blk Lab "RAVEN" "RIP"Nov 15/17
1964 Lincoln vin4Y86N00007
1964 Red Convertible

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Alan H. Tast
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Location: Omaha, NE

Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by Alan H. Tast »

Scott:

Rebuilding the pump shouldn't be hard if you have access to a hydraulic press (that's one of the 'wish list' items for my workshop after a concrete floor, insulation, shelving/mezzanine, 2- or 4-post lift, etc.) and can get the parts. The impeller is pressed off/on the pump shaft, and likewise the seals and bearings are also pressed in.
60-up FE Water Pump Exploded Diagram
60-up FE Water Pump Exploded Diagram
Here's a link to a rebuild kit I found on the 'innertube' (as my boss says) from Dead Nuts On reproductions in Fresno, California (they specialize in '69-'70 Mustang/Shelby resto parts/rebuilding services) for a pre-'69 FE 'small bearing' water pump for under $60 (add shipping/tax/etc)
- note there's also a '69-later 'big bearing' kit (BTW I just love the company's name):

https://www.deadnutson.com/1962-68-fe-b ... build-kit/

Take a look at the page linked above as it has a bunch of info on rebuilding the pump, dimensions, casting numbers to look for, etc. They'll also rebuild your pump for $165. And go through their other pages on details for '69-'70 'Stangs - I think the radiator caps they show may be similar to the OEM ones I've seen in pics for early-mid '60s 'Birds/Galaxies, and they give an interesting comparison on fuel/heater hose spring clamps, too.

You can thank me later... :mrgreen:
Alan H. Tast, AIA
Technical Director/Past President,
Vintage Thunderbird Club Int'l.
Author, "Thunderbird 1955-1966" & "Thunderbird 50 Years"
1963 Hardtop & 1963 Sports Roadster

Scott6T6
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Apr 20, 2020 11:36 pm

Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by Scott6T6 »

Thanks Wally and Alan!

With this entire car show season looking like it's going to be a bust, I guess I'm not under the gun to get this water pump replaced. If I have to remove the pump and then send it off to be rebuilt, that's going to take a little while.
I also have a very rare, NOS C4SE- 8286-A lower radiator hose with correct for '66 rectangular FoMoCo logo that I plan on installing as part of this project. More on the hose later. If only I could locate a NOS upper hose!

Actually, as of today, there is no evidence of a leak at all and hasn't been for a few months. I was doing another thorough inspection of the water pump last night, checking everything from the bypass hose (which is directly above the rear cover) to the weep hole below the front shaft extension for a possible leak point. The only place I can determine where ANY coolant has leaked from inside the pump is at the bottom of that rear access cover. As I mentioned above, it's a small leak at this point.
Sure would be a lot easier and less expensive if I could get away with just replacing that rear cover gasket and then reinstalling the pump without the need of a rebuild. However, If I ended up having to remove the pump a second time because it still leaked and needed to be rebuilt... let's not even go there!

Next time I start the engine I'll watch closely to see if I can in fact determine precisely where the leak originates, although the water pump had never leaked while the engine was running before. At least I never saw any evidence of that. When I first discovered the leak late last November, I hadn't had the engine running for about a month or so prior to that. The car was parked and tucked in for winter storage.

Wally, I'll contact White Post Restorations and see if they do rebuild water pumps.

Alan, guess where I got the replacement gasket for the rear access cover I show above? Yep, Dead Nuts On! They also offer a replacement cover and the attaching bolts, although they claim they're not quite "dead nuts on", but very close. I was not aware they offer a rebuilding service. I'm gonna check that out as well. $165 to rebuild my pump seems reasonable, but that of course doesn't include shipping both ways. Considering the approx. 20 lb. weight of the cast iron pump and it's size, I'm sure that wouldn't be cheap.

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Alan H. Tast
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Location: Omaha, NE

Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by Alan H. Tast »

Scott6T6 wrote:
Fri May 22, 2020 4:17 pm
Alan, guess where I got the replacement gasket for the rear access cover I show above? Yep, Dead Nuts On! They also offer a replacement cover and the attaching bolts, although they claim they're not quite "dead nuts on", but very close. I was not aware they offer a rebuilding service. I'm gonna check that out as well. $165 to rebuild my pump seems reasonable, but that of course doesn't include shipping both ways. Considering the approx. 20 lb. weight of the cast iron pump and it's size, I'm sure that wouldn't be cheap.
Hence the recommendation to get the rebuild parts and DIY. Surely someone you know or in TBMW has a press or access to one if you need to 'scope creep' the project. I actually should get a few rebuild kits myself and set them on the shelf for redoing a few pumps I have on the shelf including a C4SE and C2AE hipo pump for the '63 hardtop and Roadster, and if I can ever run across some C3SE-prefix castings...
Alan H. Tast, AIA
Technical Director/Past President,
Vintage Thunderbird Club Int'l.
Author, "Thunderbird 1955-1966" & "Thunderbird 50 Years"
1963 Hardtop & 1963 Sports Roadster

Scott6T6
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Apr 20, 2020 11:36 pm

Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by Scott6T6 »

I went to the Dead Nuts On website and ended up spending some serious time there. A lot of interesting info for Ford detail fanatics like myself.

The cost to have them rebuild my C6AE - 8505-B water pump is $165 and that includes the return shipping.

I really like the fact that these guys specialize in original Ford water pumps. Obviously that makes them very familiar with these pumps and any inherent "issues" that may be associated with them. They are also very much detail oriented and I totally appreciate that as well. They even have photos of completed water pumps after rebuilding. They look great and are ready to be painted. I'm sold!

Having the pump rebuilt rather than just replacing the rear cover gasket should ensure I won't encounter problems with it in the near future after I have everything back together. That's a headache nobody wants!
Just as important I would be having my factory installed water pump rebuilt. This of course ensures I still have the correct C6AE - 8505 - B pump as well as the proper casting date!

Thanks again to all who contributed their time and advice.

Scott6T6
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Apr 20, 2020 11:36 pm

Re: Water pump coolant leak

Post by Scott6T6 »

Alan, I probably could find somebody who has access to a hydraulic press, but I think I'm just gonna spend the money and let those guys at "Dead Nuts On" rebuild my water pump.
I don't think $165 is out of line at all and that price includes cleaning of the housing, all needed parts and the return shipping.

You should see some of the prices I encountered for rebuilt pumps online. One C6SE pump had a price tag of $550 and I wasn't impressed with what I saw. Incorrect casting date too.

The Dead Nuts On rebuilding service sounds like a winner to me. I was impressed.
Thanks again for the tip!

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