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Old 03-22-2015, 01:02 PM   #1
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Unhappy HELP! Will blown water pump cause power loss ??

Hey guys, i'm new here.

I was doing my delivery run the other day, slipped on some ice and smashed pretty good into a snow bank. Thought my car was totaled, looked at her and to my surprise she was only the victim of a little dent on the bumper. So I got in my car and finished my run.

The next day I realized my car was having some trouble heating up, it took about an hour for my car to reach the full temperature (engine temp and interior temp) about half way through my run I started running into some problems going up hills where, especially if I drove over a puddle. My dash lights started dimming and I would have to step on the gas fully to be able to get full engine power to get up an incline (I drive on dirt roads mostly)

Anyways, about 3/4s of the way through the run my heat totally stopped working and started blowing cold air. I had a sneaking suspicion my belt was slipping so I finished up my areas and started making my way back to my local gas station to give me car a good engine check to see what the issue was.

On the way to the gas station my car lost full power, power steer, power breaks, ect. I had to go to the side of the road and my car wouldn't start again for a few minutes. I eventually got it to start and put it somewhere more convenient. After popping the hood I immediately noticed the engine was clearly over heating (even though my temp gauge wasn't going past the middle) and my coolant res was completely empty.

I let my car sit for about an hour and continued doing my run after a buddy came and picked me up and let me use his car.

I got back to my car, filled it up with water and tried to get it back home so I could properly diagnose it, buy the parts and fix the problem.

ON the way home though, my car temp started climbing exponentially, after only about 10kms my car temp was red lining and i had to pull over again and fill my res tank again with water. This happened two or three times on the way back, it seemed odd because on my entire run prior to that - I noticed there was some engine issues, but the temp gauge was reading normally.

Anyways, when I got home I realized I had a leak near my water pump which probably means I damaged my water pump in the collision with the snow bank (something ive done before)

So I am switching the water pump later today and the gasket and probably one of the hoses that goes into the heater core. However I am worried that this won't be the final fix to my engine problem.

I have never heard of engine over heating causing the electrical power to seize ?? Also if my engine was over heating, why was my temp gauge not reading it until after I let it sit and take it home ?? I think it may have something to do with me putting water in it without running the car, thus causing air lock in the rad when I drove home ??

I also have quite a serious rough idle going on now when I put my car in reverse, could I have damaged the exhaust or something while driving my car home over heating ?? It also has a hard time starting from time to time, like after I let it sit after working on it and I come back to it the next morning, it has a hard time starting - like it hiccups once or twice as if the engine was cold - which doesn't seem like a symptom of a blown water pump ?? Could I have damaged something in the belt drive that's causing these problems ??

Please let me know, this car is my baby and my livelihood as I use it to work 6 days a week. Need to fix this problem (at least so it runs at temp) by tomorrow, latest Tuesday or ill be losing serious amounts of cash.

Thanks for the help.


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Old 03-22-2015, 03:51 PM   #2
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First off, you need to tell us what engine type is in your car before we can give any accurate guesses. Find the types described/pictured here:Which Engine Does My Focus Have?


I'm afraid that from the description given so far it sounds like you overheated the engine for a long time & repeatedly after loosing coolant, with possible extensive damage. Might have a blown head gasket, warped head, or even totally worn out engine from the overheating.

You'll need to start with a compression test, looking at the plugs when removed for evidence of water in the cylinders.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:14 PM   #3
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Sorry, it's a 2.0L, SPI.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:17 PM   #4
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I bought a new water pump and belt, going to fill my car up with water (making numerous stops along the way) to my buddys garage and switch both of those. I think that will solve the problem. The car has never had any problems and was never run at a high temp until the other day. There is no coolant where the engine oil is, I checked to make sure - I blew a head gasket on a Saturn once so I know how it goes.

I personally just think I had a barring go on my water pump, which caused the belt to start slipping which was causing the slight power loss. I hope i am right.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:39 PM   #5
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Most ECM/PCM equipped motors employ limp home and engine overheating strategies to minimize damage and provide limited but useful driveability. With engine overheating what usually happens is that the PCM cancels off 2 ignition cycles, and hence the loss of power as you'll be driving on 2 cylinders. This will help the engine stay reasonably cool by the lack of ignition and by the cold air coming in from the intake. The PCM strategy will also prevent you from revving the engine above AFAIK 2,500. You should also have seen warning lights on the dashboard including CEL / MIL.

Of course what Sailor said is all true and I just hope you didn't push your car to that extreme.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:47 PM   #6
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When the car died initially I had a CEL, MIL & Battery light come on. Upon restart the car only gave me a MIL light notification that coincided with a weird little rattle inside the engine. I soon realized that my car doesn't have a normal TEMP light and that the oil light and the temp light are both the same light. When the car heats up it gives you an oil light notification instead of the normal "thermometer" light. Almost like an ATV. I shouldn't find it odd seeing as my car doesn't even have an RPM gauge.

***

Just to be clear so I don't sound like a complete idiot, the car's temp gauge DID NOT go past the middle while I was driving BEFORE IT DIED. Only until it died did the MIL light come on. After that I let it sit and put coolant in it, when I started driving that's when the car really started to climb temp wise. I think the reason for that is, as my GF's dad explained to me. I put coolant in the vehicle while it was off, which probably caused air lock - which probably caused the engine to over heat.

My question is though, why would I be losing engine power and losing my dash lights because of a faulty water pump ?? This was BEFORE I over heated the car. It was giving me issues before the car stalled.

Is it just a combination of the blown water pump and the slipping belt that is causing this ?? IDK!

Last edited by paperboy420; 03-22-2015 at 04:55 PM. Reason: Needed to mention something.
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Old 03-22-2015, 05:36 PM   #7
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Unlike on old models, engine coolant sensors are not just there to operate the temp gauge. They feed data to the PCM and it's up to the on-board software to determine what to do with that data. It might control the EGR valve, the fuel / air mixture, etc. Temp sensors are designed to work properly when in contact with coolant, meaning that if for some reason you already had air in the system (and this can happen with a leaking pump), the temp sensor could have been reading air temp instead. The PCM's cooling strategy under overheating conditions is triggered by the cylinder head temperature sensor which is separate from the coolant temp sensor.

At this juncture if I were you, I'd repair the coolant system first and will take it from there.
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Old 03-22-2015, 05:49 PM   #8
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We're not there to see it all either, but the SPI does have a water temp sensor so lack of coolant might cause you NOT to see it heat up on the gauge.

You've got a multi-function warning lamp that will light from severe overheat & a limp mode may be entered then, the OIL light is ONLY for low oil pressure - a possible result of low rpm or excessive overheating.

Lights dimming could have been from engine turning slow as a result of the other problems. Slipping belt could contribute as well.

IIRC the water pump is driven by the timing belt on an SPI, have you looked at it yet?

Any check on where it's leaking?

Not an expert on the SPI's, seen quite a few comments in the past on overheating ones here that resulted in the gasket/head issues I was worrying about as a possibility.
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Old 03-22-2015, 06:30 PM   #9
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OH! Makes sense, if there is no coolant it wouldn't read as over heating fluid but would be reading the air temp. I see, so I was probably driving it over heating for quite a while. That sucks :( Might have done some damage.

As for the belt, it is fine but i keep hearing that signature 'squeaking sound' that I've come to know before a belt goes. Especially any time my car would come in contact with water.

That is how this whole probably initiated, I would be driving my car on my run and approach a large puddle and it would splash on the under part of my car and I would notice almost every time the car would lose engine power and the dash lights would dim. The same way it would happen if the belt was going. But maybe it's the pulley itself that needs to be switched ??

Sucks because it's sunday and my buddy is coming into town in a few hours from his family's, so I wont be able to buy any additional parts if I see any problems arise. But I bet you I need to replace the pulley.

All of this is occurring while a new problem has occured that is the odd 'rocking' I am getting when in reverse now, could over heating the engine have caused the engine mounts to come loose ??

After creating this thread and doing a little more reading about the dreaded blown head gasket (can't happen, i bought this car a year ago) I went outside and started her up and checked for the 'sweet white smelling smoke' and 'rough idle on start up' symptoms and neither are there. The exhaust is spewing white 'steam' but only because the outside temp is about -10 here in Northern Ontario. There is also no coolant in the engine oil, so I am almost positive I didn't blow the head gasket.

Could the belt being slightly off be causing the car to idle rough in reverse ??

Also, I have noticed that when I turn my wheels the belt makes a bit more of a hissing noise than the normal slight hiss it is making on start up.

Could all of these issues be associated with the belt ?? I bet it's the pulley, which sucks because like I said - sunday and no places are open for additional parts :(

Need the car to be operating by tomorrow morning.
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Old 03-22-2015, 06:41 PM   #10
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Sorry, it's leaking at the side passenger front wheel, below the serp belt, it's coming from inbetween the two pulleys at the bottom.

I found some pictures online that are the exact situation that I have...

This one forsure.







Water (Coolant) is dripping all along where that 'steel pipe' is that I assume is connected to the water pump. I took a video on my iphone but have no idea how to upload it (stupid apple)

But these pics are all bang on.
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