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Lowering the engine is not as hard as you think. Just be careful and don't get yourself pinched. As many recommend, use a block of wood to protect the oil pan. I also put a rag or small towel on top of the wood to add a soft cushion.

As long as the other two motor mounts are still secure, it's easy.
 

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Working under the car does have risk. There were some Harbour Freight jack stands that failed. And there's always the danger of improper placement or use.

I have two 8x8 wood beams that I place under the subframe jack points after the car is on jackstands. Then I stack 2x8 blocks on top of them, until I reach the subframe. If a jackstand fails, the car will fall onto the wood and not me.

Most people trust two jackstands and get right under the car. I like the extra safety. A car can be replaced. A life cannot.
 

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Thanks for the advice src. To you think I can get the pump out without lowering the engine or jacking the car up too high?
I replaced the water pump/tensioner/belt in my 2002 Zetec wagon in 2018. I dont recall if I had to raise or lower the engine (maybe both) but you definately will not get the water pump out without doing that. You wont even get the pulley off. Supporting the engine with a floor jack and removing the passenger side engine mount is really not that difficult. More recently I replaced the alternator on that vehicle and needed to remove the engine mount for that job too. If you dont feel comfortable or dont have the tools then take it to someone that does.

Paul

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Very important you support the engine. A good way to ruin some bolts and threads is to take a motor mount out with no support underneath I've seen that done too many times.


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Rotating the tensioner enough to release the old belt, and get the new belt back on, can be tough. It can take almost 90 degrees of rotation to fully release the tensioner. That means you need a lot of clearance for your wrench to turn. And with only one wrench you may not be strong enough to move it. I wasn't. The old mechanic trick is to hook two wrenches together to get more leverage. I put duct tape around mine to hold them together.

The job is doable safely, if you prepare well. Watch more videos, any you can find.
 

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There's one video where the guy had a seized tensioner, wouldn't budge. He used some blocks of wood and the weight of the car to free it up. Creative.

I don't have an impact wrench, only minimal hand tools. My lug nuts were so tight the short tire iron was not enough leverage. I went to the hardware store and bought a 3 foot black iron pipe. Used that as a cheater bar on the tire iron and finally got the lug nuts loose.

About the 3rd time I took the wheel off, one of the nuts didn't want to move. Even with the cheater bar it was hard. By the time I got the nut off, it was hot enough to burn my hand. The threads in the nut and bolt got damaged somehow. Maybe some dirt got in there the previous time I put it on. I filed the bolt threads down enough to get the nut back on, but it needed replacing. I didn't have the tools for that, so I took it to a shop. They replaced the bolt and nut while doing a brake job.

Beware that unexpected problems can arise with an old car.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Thank you for all the tips. I plan on taking my time and doing it step by step. I don't want to create more issues by rushing or missing a step. I will remove the mount and have the engine prepped to lower if need be. I too have minimal hand tools. Gotta go get some new sockets for this job.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Thanks for sharing the pics Paul. That new pump looks pretty. Just to clarify. No RTV is used correct?
 

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No RTV is used correct?
The pump housing seals to the block with a large o-ring which should be supplied with the new pump. Do not use sealer (ie RTV) on the o-ring or pump housing. At install I lube the o-ring with a bit of coolant.

If you look closely at the second pic you will notice there is a 'notch' in the block mounting. This notch is very important to the removal and installation of the pump.

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Thank you Paul. I see the notch. I take a brass drift will be a huge help too? To pop it loose.
 

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I take a brass drift will be a huge help too? To pop it loose.
I dont recall having to jar it loose but you may need to give it a love tap or two.

That 1aAuto video is a good guide. I would place a piece of 2x6, etc, between the floor jack and the oil pan to spread the load and protect the pan. Im not sure why she removed the upper timing cover - you dont need to.

Paul
 

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They have another video on the timing belt. Maybe they took part of it to make this one. That would explain why.

My old water pump came off without much effort. Don't know what you will find.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
I certainly will. Here is a question. Howe high do I need to jack up my car for this job? I ask because I need to go out and buy some jack stands.
 

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Not sure exactly. Bought mine at Advance Auto. Nothing great, just basic stands for modest price. Be sure they're rated high enough for the weight of your vehicle. The rating is two stands used together, not each stand.

I set mine at the 3rd or 4th notch I think. The lower the better for stability.
 

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Here is a question. Howe high do I need to jack up my car for this job? I ask because I need to go out and buy some jack stands.
For almost any work where I need to have access under the front of the vehicle I use my jackstands on their lowest setting and place them under the front 'frame' rails as shown. They are approx 14 inches tall in this configuration and almost always gives me room for access. I also place my floor jack under the subframe as shown. Hope this helps.

Paul

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I personally put mine underneath the pinch weld.
I bought my jack stands at northern tools and I've been using them for a long time never had a problem with them. I have the heavy duty SUV models, but any two ton jack stand will work just fine.

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I put my jack stands under the pinch weld reinforced area. That leaves the question where to place the floor jack to get things started. Again I use the pinch weld, but the weak part near the reinforced area. Yes it may bend, but you can straighten it out. There's even a video on that. Later I cut a little wood block and sawed/chiseled a slot in it big enough to fit the pinch weld. Now I use that with the floor jack. No more damage to the pinch weld.
 

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Discussion Starter #40
Thank you guys. I was just thinking by the time i buy everything I need it will total the cost of taking it to the shop. But, I will have all the tools for future jobs
 
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