How to Replace the Water Pump in a Mercury Cougar

by Contributor

If the water pump is faulty in your Mercury Cougar, this could cause all kinds of problems in your engine. The water pump is the heart of the Cougar's cooling system, circulating the coolant. To prolong the life of your vehicle's engine, make sure to change out a bad water pump.

2.0L Cougar Engine

Place a drain pan underneath the radiator. When the engine is cool, drain the cooling system from the radiator into the pan

Disconnect the negative battery cable before you begin.

Remove the accessory drive belt and timing belt and disconnect the lower radiator hose.

Loosen and remove the bolts to the water pump and take the pump out of the engine.

Install the new water pump, tightening the bolts to 12 to 15 foot pounds (16 to 20 Nm).

Reinstall the accessory drive belt and reattach the lower radiator hose.

Reconnect the negative battery cable and refill the cooling system.

Start the vehicle and inspect for leaks when it reaches to normal operating temperature.

2.5L Cougar Engine

Place a drain pan underneath the radiator. When the engine is cool, drain the cooling system from the radiator into the pan.

Disconnect the negative battery cable.

Remove the water pump pulley shield and the water pump drive belt. Disconnect the coolant hoses.

Loosen and remove the three bolts to the water pump and remove the pump and the pump housing. Separate the pump from the housing.

Attach the new water pump to the pump housing, tightening the fasteners to 16 to 18 foot pounds (22 to 25 Nm).

Install the new water pump with the housing to the engine, replacing the 3 bolts and tightening them to 11 to 13 foot pounds (15 to 18 Nm), plus 85 to 95 degrees. You must replace these three bolts because they are designed torque-to-yield.

Reattach the coolant hoses and the water pump drive belt with the pump pulley shield.

Reconnect the negative battery cable.

Refill the cooling system, start the car and check for leaks once the engine reaches normal operating temperatures.


  • Loud noises coming from the cooling system in your Mercury Cougar could be a sign that your water pump needs replacing. A leak in the coolant may also be an indicator.
  • Disconnecting the negative battery cable may reset the on-board computer system or parts of the computer system, so be aware that you may have to reset certain settings.


  • Never attempt to drain the radiator when the engine in your Mercury Cougar is hot. The steam and the hot coolant within the radiator can cause serious burns.
  • Never leave antifreeze open or in puddles. Cats and dogs are attracted to the ethylene glycol in the antifreeze and if they drink it, it could be fatal.

Items you will need

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