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Old 04-01-2011, 11:35 AM   #1
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Water pump longevity

I’m currently sitting at 57K miles and am, necessarily, thinking of maintenance issues. One thing that comes repeatedly to mind is the water pump---the original water pump. Now I’ve read snippets here and there on the Boxster water pump, everything from “they’ll go 75K miles” to Jake’s “replace them every 3 years, regardless of mileage.” Now, I’ve gotten so I take seriously Jake’s warnings about what can (and does) go kaput in these cars, but still I’m curious. My questions are:
Who here has had a water pump fail on them?

What was age of the pump and how many miles were on it?

Was it OEM or made by someone else?

What was the symptoms/mode of failure (seepage, bearings went, impeller blades self-destructed, etc.) and consequential damage to the engine, if any?

What brand pump did you replace it with, and any thoughts on your wisdom of your choice?


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Old 04-01-2011, 11:44 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frodo
I’m currently sitting at 57K miles and am, necessarily, thinking of maintenance issues. One thing that comes repeatedly to mind is the water pump---the original water pump. Now I’ve read snippets here and there on the Boxster water pump, everything from “they’ll go 75K miles” to Jake’s “replace them every 3 years, regardless of mileage.” Now, I’ve gotten so I take seriously Jake’s warnings about what can (and does) go kaput in these cars, but still I’m curious. My questions are:
Who here has had a water pump fail on them?

What was age of the pump and how many miles were on it?

Was it OEM or made by someone else?

What was the symptoms/mode of failure (seepage, bearings went, impeller blades self-destructed, etc.) and consequential damage to the engine, if any?

What brand pump did you replace it with, and any thoughts on your wisdom of your choice?
For reference, RedLightnin' and MarcW on Pedro's Board replaced their original water pumps at 174K and 172K miles, respectively: http://pedrosboard.com/read.php?7,5750,5750#msg-5750

So, it appears that the sky is not ALWAYS falling.

Regards, Maurice.

Last edited by schoir; 04-01-2011 at 11:47 AM.
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Old 04-01-2011, 12:30 PM   #3
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Water pumps go from age, not mileage...it's related to the pH of the coolant mixture (and the amount of time on that coolant), heat exposure, heat cycling, and pressure mostly.

My guess is 3 years is completely conservative and safe, 5 years will almost always be safe except for extremely rare failures or defects, and 10 years is working on borrowed time.

Coolant changed every ~3 years or so should make them last towards the end of that range.

Hope that makes sense.
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Old 04-01-2011, 01:11 PM   #4
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Changed mine at 58k, the impeller was perfect but there was a bit of particulate showing that came from the spindle. I only changed it because I was doing the motor mount.
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Old 04-01-2011, 01:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DFW02S
Changed mine at 58k, the impeller was perfect but there was a bit of particulate showing that came from the spindle. I only changed it because I was doing the motor mount.
How hard was this DIY??
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Old 04-01-2011, 02:00 PM   #6
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It was really very easy.

For a 3 armed Porsche certified tech with a lift.

Pedro's board has an excellent how to. It wasn't that bad. I can always manage to make the job bigger than it should be, plus it was cold (even in Dallas) and that never helps.
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Old 04-01-2011, 02:14 PM   #7
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so far 2001 base TIP @ 86k miles (keeping in mind i purchased the car may 2009) and i have not replaced the WP and from the service records it is still the original pump. i think it's even the original coolant since it's not pink but a pee-ish yellow/green.

i would like to replace it but i get conflicting stories - "lasts a long time!" - "replace it every 3 years" - "replace it every 40k miles" etc...

i was at my local p-car shop and told him i wanted to replace it. when i answered "because it's old" to his "why" question he said "i've seen them go a long time before needing to be replaced and it seems that once they're replaced the replacements go bad quickly"...

i have had a WP go bad on one of our previous cars - 2001 VW Jetta @ 135k miles. symptoms? temp needle jumped to the right, coolant light started flashing and the car dumped coolant all over the road. replaced it with OEM (plastic impeller) and the replacement went out 9 months (and 24k miles) later. replaced it with an aftermarket and it was still fine when we sold it @ ~175k miles.
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Old 04-01-2011, 02:18 PM   #8
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My 2000 2.7 started seeping during the summer of 2009 with 81,000 miles. I replaced the original pump with an OE from Sunset ($197). I believe I caught it early. The impeller was in great shape. While there I installed the LN 160 degree thermostat and replaced the coolant.

There didn't seem to be a consensus about an aftermarket pump versus an OE pump so I went with the OE.
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Old 04-01-2011, 10:58 PM   #9
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I replaced mine @ 76,000 km (47,000miles) and comparing the original pump vanes, they measured up exactly to the new (original) Porsche pump as supplied by Raby's Flat 6.
There was no perceived wear on the shaft or bearings - but I'm good to go now for the next few years.
As a matter of interest, I can't see why anybody would buy an aftermarket pump (Laso) for such an important piece of equipment. If you only need to replace the punp every 3-4 years or 50,000 miles, why not just buy the genuine article and be done with it....
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Old 04-01-2011, 11:03 PM   #10
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i have 80K on the original pump and for no other reason other than "just in case" i bought a new pump.

My question is: can I just remove the pump, and lose some fluid and bolt up the new one and replace the lost fluid?

I flushed the system at 65K and don't want to do the whole thing again.

James
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Old 04-02-2011, 12:28 AM   #11
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71k miles on a 2000
original pump, still goin' strong.
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Old 04-02-2011, 06:35 AM   #12
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My OEM water pump died on me at 59k miles, after 8 years. It started leaking coolant below the center of the car. Replaced with another OEM pump. Coolant was changed every 4 years, but it still croaked.
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Old 04-02-2011, 11:33 AM   #13
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28,000 miles on 2001S and no issue .... Bob

Last edited by Motobob; 04-03-2011 at 11:51 AM.
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Old 04-02-2011, 02:20 PM   #14
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I have 54k miles on my 2000 'S' was thinking of doing it before some trips to the mountains. Is $280 for genuine Porsche bump a good price? I see them listed for much more. Also do these come with metal or plastic blades and does it matter?
Thanks.
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Old 04-02-2011, 03:07 PM   #15
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i think all the dialogue about the water pump got started when jake started seeing engine failures due to bits of deteriorated water pump impeller blocking coolant passages and killing engines.

as per porsche maintenance scheme, the water pump is one of the many items you replace upon failure and not on a scheduled basis (like brakes, engine mounts, shocks, tires, etc.). given that one failure mode of the water pump can kill the engine, jake recommended the 3 year replacement period (ie, replace it before it fails). 3 years may seem like over-cautiousness, but given all the variables that can affect the impeller lifetime (coolant type, heat/cool cycle, etc.) and consequences of failure, you have to assign some schedule to it.

there was talk of metal impellers to avoid the one catastrophic failure mode, but the only ones i can find are from a dubious vendor, and there is also talk of what damage can be done by the metal impeller to the engine if the bearings fail and the impeller starts chopping about ...
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Old 04-02-2011, 09:19 PM   #16
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Quote:

"i think all the dialogue about the water pump got started when jake started seeing engine failures due to bits of deteriorated water pump impeller blocking coolant passages and killing engines."

Posted by The Radium King.

Agreed. THAT'S the ONLY reason I had even considered replacing it at all...had previously planned on waiting til it died and throwing in a new one. With my luck, if I replace it as a preventative measure, I'll be removing a "good" one and I'll turn around and have the new one die in 15 or 20K miles...
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Old 04-02-2011, 10:55 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frodo
With my luck, if I replace it as a preventative measure, I'll be removing a "good" one and I'll turn around and have the new one die in 15 or 20K miles...
LOL, that's exactly what I was thinking! Does a black cloud follow you around too??
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:05 AM   #18
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Replaced mine at 120,000. Impeller in good shape and had no leaks. Just got scared by the hype on this board. Also have original IMS and 130,000 miles and have tracked it 12 times and ridden her very hard all the time. Have used 5W40 Amsoil since the day I got it.

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