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What Happens to a Car When the Water Pump Goes out?

Kevin V


With the help of New Again Auto Repair we’ve written this post dedicated to finding out what happens to a car when the water pump goes out. As professionals in the auto industry, we’ve seen some instances where pump damage leave people stranded. But more often we see people try to drive with a damaged pump which can create all kinds of additional problems for the vehicle. That’s where we come in. But we’d rather help you prevent further damage by explaining the details of your issue.

Can you drive a car without a water pump?

The water pump is a very vital part of a vehicle.  It is the part that makes sure the coolant gets to the engine properly.  It also maintains an optimum operating temperature.  When a water pump fails it can be a catastrophe.  The coolant is no longer circulating properly through the car.  Heating and cooling may be affected by the vehicle.  The car may begin to overheat as well.

It is possible to drive your vehicle without a water pump, but not good to.  Some people in the racing circuit or who drive racing vehicles purposefully remove their water pumps to obtain more horsepower to their engine.  If you are driving a vehicle for everyday use though, a water pump is a must.  It helps to keep your engine alive and keeps it from overheating.

How do you know if your water pump is bad?

There is a way or you to be able to tell that your water pump is bad.  Will your bad water pump cause the check engine light to come on?  Will your water pump make a noise if it is failing?  The answer to both questions is yes.  Here is a shortlist of reasons your water pump may be bad:

  • Check Engine Light – A water pump itself will not cause the check engine light to come on.  The reason that your check engine light comes on is that the water pump affects your engine.  Without your water pump, your check engine light will come on because your engine will slowly overheat.
  • Listen for a Noise – If a water pump is bad it can make a noise.  Sometimes the noise will be a squeak or a grind when you are driving.  Sometimes the water pump will even make a ticking noise if you listen close enough.  No matter where the noise sounds like it is coming from, you should always get everything checked out when you hear abnormal sounds coming from your car.
  • Overheating or Close to Overheating –   One of the ways you can tell is if your car is overheating.  The only issue with trying to figure out your problem this way is a lot of different things can cause your car to overheat, a bad radiator being one of them.
  • Reduced Heat or Lack of Heat –   If your car’s heat is failing or is not as strong as it once was it’s time to get the water pump checked.  It may not be bad all of the ways, but it may need a small repair to get working properly again.
  • Leakage – You might have noticed some fluid coming from your water pump when your vehicle is off, and you may be asking yourself; “Why does my water pump leak when my car is off?”.  Normally this issue can be attributed to the water pump gasket.  Gaskets are an easy fix and normally do not require a whole water pump replacement.

What causes a water pump to fail?

There are a number of different things that can cause you to the engine water pump to fail.  Some of them are as simple as wear and tear while others amount to improper vehicle care.  These are some of the reasons that a car water pump has been known to fail:

  • Blown gaskets
  • Low coolant level
  • Bad coolant
  • Incorrect coolant
  • Worn belt
  • Improperly installed belt
  • Running pump while dry
  • Flushing the coolant on schedule
  • Simple wear and tear

A lot of these issues can very easily be prevented from occurring if the car is properly cared for and kept up with.

Keeping up with your car

There are a lot of issues that can occur with a vehicle that is no fault of the car owner, however, some of these issues can be prevented or prolonged from occurring with proper car care.  Things like keeping your fluids changed with a company that has things like oil change services can make the difference between having your car for 10 years or 20.

Sometimes, no matter how much you care for your car, parts will still go bad.  Car parts, especially the mechanical ones, only last so long and are only meant to go so far.  It is very important to change parts, like the water pump, whenever they go bad.  Using a company that can provide you with a water pump and other parts for all your engine needs can be a plus when your car has an issue and stops working properly for you.

So, my water pump is important

Your water pump for your engine is very important to your car.  Without it, your car can overheat, you will have no heat and your engine will die faster.  You should always take the time to get your water pump repaired or replaced if you feel like your water pump is the issue with your engine. Need quality water pump repair in Silver Springs? Call (301) 588-5292 today!