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How to Change a Water Pump on a 2002 Ford Ranger

by Sonja Herbert

The cooling system in your 2002 Ford Ranger ensures that the engine doesn’t overheat and freeze up. And the water pump is the center of the cooling system. When it is leaking or starts making noises during operation, it needs to be replaced to keep the engine cool and smoothly running. Replacing the water pump is not difficult, and you can save yourself a lot of time and money by doing this task yourself.


Turn off the engine and wait until it is cooled off completely. Disconnect the battery.


Position the drain pan under the radiator drain on the bottom of the Ford Ranger 2002 radiator.


Open the radiator drain, making sure the drain pan catches the liquid. Open the radiator cap on the top of the radiator. Wait until the radiator is drained completely.


Unscrew the bolts from the hub that holds the water pump pulley, remove it and take off the drive belt.


Take off the four bolts that hold the water pump in place and take off the pump.


Wire brush the area where the new pump will be installed to remove any debris and old sealant. Finish cleaning with a rag.


Lubricate the new o-ring gasket with a thin layer of sealant on each side and place it into the correct position.


Install the pump onto the mounting surface and replace the bolts that hold it tight. Tighten the bolts to the specified torque of 89 inch/pounds or the torque the owner’s manual recommends.


Replace the drive belt and the belt pulley. Replace the bolts for the pulley and tighten them to 18 feet/pounds, or torque as suggested in the owner’s manual. Connect the hoses to the pump. Check all connections to make sure they are tight.


On the radiator bottom, close the drain valve. Funnel the old coolant back into the radiator, or replace it with a new 50/50 premixed coolant.


Re-connect the battery, start the engine and let it run while you inspect your new pump for proper operation and leaks.

Items you will need

About the Author

Sonja Herbert has been writing since 1998. She has been published in “Chicken Soup for the Soul,” “A Cup of Comfort,” and many other publications. Her writing won the Eaton Literary Award, first prize at, among other awards. Herbert has a Masters of Arts in linguistics from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

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