How to Stop a Leak in a Water Pump Seal (with Video)

by Brittany TuckerUpdated June 05, 2023
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The water pump seal prevents water and antifreeze from leaking out and overheating your vehicle’s engine. According to AA1Car, most water pumps are designed to go 100,000 miles or more, but it's not unusual to see leaks occur after 50,000 or 60,000 miles. Replacing the entire water pump is often necessary in putting a stop to the seal leak.

1. Things you may need

  • Stop-leak product
  • Water pump
  • Repair manual
  • Mechanic

2. Pour a stop-leak product into your vehicle's radiator

Pour a liquid radiator/water pump stop-leak product, such as Bar’s Liquid Radiator Stop Leak, into your vehicle’s radiator.

  • The radiator is usually located in the front of the engine.
  • The liquid stop-leak product poured into the radiator will flow to the water pump seal and possibly seal or slow the leak.
  • Ensure that the radiator is not hot, and your vehicle is running before pouring the solution into your radiator.

Stop-leak products are not a permanent solution and will only serve as a temporary fix.

3. Replace the entire water pump

Replace the entire water pump. You will need to know your vehicle’s exact make, model, year and engine type in order to purchase the correct water pump for your vehicle.

4. Find or purchase your specific vehicle’s repair manual

Find or purchase your specific vehicle’s repair manual. Because every vehicle is different, you will need your vehicle’s specific repair manual to successfully replace the water pump. The repair manual will describe in detail step by step instructions on how to replace your vehicle’s water pump. You can purchase or find a repair manual for your vehicle at automotive stores or at your local library.

Video to Identify a Bad Water Pump

TIPS and Warnings

If you don’t want to replace the water pump yourself, have a professional mechanic replace the water pump.

  • Before purchasing the new water pump, ensure that it comes with a lifetime warranty.
  • Having your water pump replaced by a mechanic can be very expensive.

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