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Old 12-10-2015, 11:25 PM   #1
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Mystery coolant loss - Duratec 2.0

Alright for the past month or so my car has been experience a mystery loss of coolant. The odd thing is it doesn't always happen, and as noted in the title is the 2.0L Duratec in my 2006 ZXW with 143K miles on it.

When it happens there is an obvious puddle of coolant under the car on the passenger side under the accessories. It seems to be coming from either the water pump or the thermostat but I can't really tell either way, as there doesn't seem to be a trail of water on the engine. When it happens, it seem to happen 30 minutes to an hour after driving the car and parking it and seems to happen more often if the nose of the car is pointing downwards (parking on a slope with the nose pointing downhill). I have never observed it happen when the engine is running, only after it's shut off.

One possible clue I noted is the portion serpentine belt that goes between the crank pulley and AC compressor is wet with coolant right below the water pump, which leads me to believe that it is possibly the water pump. However the other day when I took the serpentine belt off the water pump didn't seem to have any play in the shaft and seemed to spin freely, though there does seem to be a slight metallic rubbing/grinding type noise coming from the area around the water pump, but was unable to isolate the source of it.

Has anybody seen a similar problem with their car before? Based on my past experience if it was a hose, plastic fitting, or thermostat housing the leak should be somewhat continuous, and if it was the water pump the ones that I have had fail before (Chevy gen 2 SBC LT1 and Ford 1.9L SOHC (predecessor to the "beloved" 2.0L SPI engine)) also leaked constantly when the engine was running.

I already have a new replacement water pump (Napa branded Gates WP), seems easy enough to replace (remove engine mount, remove serpentine belt, remove WP pulley, remove water pump and reverse), but before I replace it I just want to see what others have experienced with this. Also anything to watch out for when doing the work? Thanks in advance!


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Old 12-11-2015, 01:45 AM   #2
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Nope, both hoses and pump can fail to very erratically leak until the leak gets worse. Twice I've had fits trying to figure out what hose was doing it on the earlier zetecs. The water pump can simply fail seal and then leak as well without being loose at all but usually the one then leads pretty quick to the other failing too. Once the bearing starts getting wet the shaft begins to loosen. Seal is behind bearing, prevents water from touching it.
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Old 12-12-2015, 11:01 PM   #3
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Well my initial suspicion was correct, it is the water pump that is bad. When checking it out I was noticing steam coming from around the water pump, and once I took the belt off it started leaking a bit more.

I have already started tearing into the car but hit a stumbling point in trying to get the water pump off, got all the bolts removed it is just in there good. Been working at it with a hammer hitting it from alternating directions and also trying to work at it with a prybar (not on the mating surfaces), it is starting to get loose but still a ways to go. While I continue to work on it any tips on a so called easy way to get the water pump dislodged from the block.

So far this is the hardest water pump job I have had to do, at least from the perspective of getting the pump off of the block. I believe it stems from the fact that it uses an o-ring to seal the pump instead of a traditional gasket.

As far as the easiest water pump change I have had to do over the years, had to have been on my 95 Caprice's w/ 2nd gen LT1 engine (current one and ones before it), a few hoses, 6 bolts and off it came, didn't even have to take off the serpentine belt as it was driven off of the camshaft. Even on my 93 SOHC and 98 SPI Escort's the water pumps were easier to change, and those included having to retime the engine (yes I know line up the marks but still).
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Old 12-14-2015, 09:40 PM   #4
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Issue resolved for now.
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Old 12-15-2015, 04:52 AM   #5
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I experienced the same thing. It turned out to be a problem with the radiator, resulting to coolant loss.
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Old 12-15-2015, 07:16 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pcordes1979 View Post
Issue resolved for now.
Great to hear you got it resolved.
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Old 12-22-2015, 03:14 PM   #7
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So how did you get the water pump out? My bf is using a prybar and a hammer but not getting anywhere with it so far...
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:09 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaspie View Post
So how did you get the water pump out? My bf is using a prybar and a hammer but not getting anywhere with it so far...
I didn't get it out myself. I ended up taking the car to the local Ford dealer, constant rain the whole weekend, frustration, and expediency led me to that. I had to take the car in anyways to get the transmission fluid changed (30,000 mile change interval) so just had all the work done at the same time, though I did save a bit of money by doing all the prep work first. If weather would have been better I would have perhaps tried rigging a slide hammer to pull it out.

Looking at the old pump, it looks like the o-ring was the culprit causing the hang up as it was all distorted and stretched out. Perhaps enough wiggling the pump along with sideways tapping with a hammer out would have eventually broken free. Needless to say it had proved to be the hardest water pump job I had ever tried to tackle, if Ford would have just used a traditional gasket it would have been much easier.

Perhaps there is a YouTube video somewhere on pulling the Duratec water pump.
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:22 PM   #9
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Mine's a dual overhead cam but it's still stuck just the same. I can't take it to a shop. No money for that. No money for a new car, either.
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Mine's a dual overhead cam but it's still stuck just the same. I can't take it to a shop. No money for that. No money for a new car, either.
Yes the dual overhead can engine used in 2005+ (and select 2003-2004) Ford Focus is called the Duratec engine which is most likely a 2.0L or in very select cases 2.3L in the case of 2005-2007 Focus ST and 2003-2004 Focus with PZEV/California emissions.
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