Question about 1997 Buick LeSabre

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1997 Buick Lesabre Water Pump problem

Water pump on m 97 lesabre is busted and i need instructions on how to remove and replace it

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THE POWER STEERING PUMP PULLEY --- ARRGGH...Not a problem. The power steering pump is held by two bolts. Use a socket and remove the top bolt and loosen the bottom bolt. Be careful not to completely remove the bottom bolt. The PS pump will loosen up enough so that you can push it towards the firewall and you will JUST have enough room to remove the waterpump bolts. Its tight but it will squeeze out.

Posted on Dec 16, 2009

  • azlrellis Feb 10, 2011

    Well for the next home mechanic who replaces the water pump on a 1997 Buick Lasabre. My version. Drive car up on floor ramps. Set emergency brake. Open hood. Loosen the four bolts holding on pulley for the water pump Use 15mm socket with long handle and move the belt tensioner to remove the serpentine belt. Unwrap the belt from the pulleys it will go as far as the lower motor mount spacer. Now take out your new water pump lay in on top of the inside fender. Now remove the 3 small bolts on top put them in the same holes of the new water pump.
    If you haven't drained the radiator, put one large or two small drain pans underneath the car. Now take off the two large bolts on the right of the water pump, put them in the same holes of the new water pump. The fluid will run out, adjust you pans. Now go to the left side and remove the large inner bolt, move the last small bolt underneath the water pump shaft. Now the last large bolt is covered by the power steering pulley. You can break the large bolt with an opened end or box wrench.
    Now use the large holes in the power steering and position it over the 12 o'clock bolt loosen the bolt free from block and only loosen 6 o'clock bolt , don’t unscrew from block. Use pry bar move power steering back to remove the last large bolt from the water pump. You should have total of 8 bolts. Use handle of hammer and pop off old water pump. Now put all those dirty bolts into the same slots of the old water pump. Clean off surface of block remove the old gasket or silicone. Silicon new water pump, spread on smoothly with finger and put new gasket on and line up the holes let set for 15/20 minutes.
    If you need to replace the serpentine belt this would be the time to use your floor jack with a 6x8x1 piece of wood and jack up the oil pan just enough to relieve the pressure on the lower motor mount bolt. Beings that you drove your car up on top of the ramps you will be able to remove the plastic under carriage cover at the front of the car, about 6 bolts and 3 small bolts, now you can pull the small plastic cover at the bottom of the inside wheel fender and the bottom motor mount bolt is visible.
    Use an 18mm box end wrench and take off the lock nut. Now use you 8mm socket and remove the motor mount bolt from the block. Before you can get the spacer out you will have to unplug the crank sensor plug and move it to the side. Stand up and from the top use something long to knock the spacer out onto the ground. Take old belt off but new belt on. Now to put the spacer back in you will need to use a pry bar in one hand and move the engine back and put the spacer back in. Now hands tighten the motor mount bolt, and then tighten up the rest of the way with the socket. Now put your lock nut back on and you’re done. Plug in the crank sensor plug and remove the jack.
    Back to the water pump put another layer of silicone on top of the gasket, smooth with your finger. Now take the dirty bolts out one by one clean with a wire brush, but them back in the old water pump. Now put your new water pump back onto the cleaned location you removed the old pump, use a piece of wood to seat the new pump on the two support pin sticking out from the block. Now take you cleaned bolts one at a time rub some silicone on the treads and hand tighten all the bolts except the one that goes under the power steering pulley, now tighten with socket or box wrench evenly.
    Take you last large bolt use you pry bar to move the power steering pulley out of the way and put the last large bolt in. Once you have all the bolts evenly torque down. Now it’s time to get the top bolt of the power steering bolt, threaded back into the block/bracket, jiggle it use the right socket with a extension turn with hand, once started now use the socket wrench and tighten up. Now it’s time to put the serpentine belt back on, I hope you have a diagram or remember how it goes on. Now use you 15mm socket wrench with handle extension, on the tension pulley and force the belt over the top of the alternator pulley. Make sure you check that the belt is on all the pulleys correctly.
    Now crawl back under the car and wipe off all the fluid dripping and put the plastic cover back on you took off. Open up the radiator cap and add antifreeze. Start your car up make sure belt is working properly. Check for water leaks from water pump, I hope you put it on right. Now back off the floor ramps and let engine run, wait for the thermostat to open, squeeze the hose if it’s hard it’s not open. When it opens up remove the radiator cap and add antifreeze and water mix. Run the heater in the car to just to complete the circulation of the fluids. Add whatever liquid you need to the radiator overflow container. Use a flashlight checking the water pump making sure there are no leaks; turn off engine check again for water leaks. If nothing leaking you did it right and you save $200/300 dollars.

  • bitsayjimlar Mar 12, 2011

    Great post! Saved me $20 for a repair manual!!!

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If it is a V6 !!! engine then obtain a standard power steering pump pulley puller and large drain pan or a couple of large rectanglar cake pans (not glass)from local auto parts store or Auto Zone or Walmart ...Also, and this is very important you must also have an ignition coil mounting clamp/bracket a hack saw or better yet a cut off wheel. along with the rest of the tool box...Now, drain and save as much antifreeze/coolant as you can. You can pour this through a coffee filter to remove the dirt and stuff that you don't want and it will still look like new.
Next, carefully remove the battery and park it on dry concrete then if yours still has the plastic engine cover - remove it. Now, with serpentine still in place, lossen the water pump pulley THEN with a 6-sided 15mm socket and breaker bar on the serpentine idler pulley bolt (you might want to use a long extension with 14mm deep socket as an extension for the breaker bar for more leverage) you can lift or push down (don't remember which but it is easy) to lossen the serpentine -- oh yea, draw yourself a quick picture of how the serpentine is routed or take a picture of it before you remove it...
Now with the belt tucked away toward the front of the engine and before removing water pump pulley you will have to cut off about 1/2 of the rear stud (1 of 2) sticking up from the engine mount, only then can the water pump pulley be removed.
Now you can see the real problem - THE POWER STEERING PUMP PULLEY --- ARRGGH, it blocks the rear 2 water pump bolts. IT must be removed. It's ok though 'cause you got the pulley puller right. wrong, there is no way
to get all the pieces needed between the pulley and the frame. OK, first of all the bolts with the kit are tooo long to fit between pulley and frame - use hack saw to remove about 3/4 of an inch (including bolt head) now it fits. OK, now remember that coil mount, your going to use that instead of the black ring collar around the split ring clamp. I used a little bit of black mastic (chewing gum will also work) to help hold things together until I had the newly modified bolt and split ring and coil mount around split ring all screwed in a few turns on the threads into the power steering pump shaft,... then, with a very big screw driver wedged in to hold the clamp (remember that igniton coil mount, that you used instead of the standard "ring" to hold the split ring together) and and a wrench on the puller the power steering pulley slides right off... cool.
Now it's pump time, ok, remember everthing you ever learned about gaskets, well block it from your mind, 'cause I'm agona share a secert with you. Remove the old pump, 4 big bolts and 4 small bolts, the small bolts are easy, just clean them up real good and lay them on the cowl or edge of fender. The 4 big bolts --- go all the way through to the water jacket, when you remove them is when you will need the cake pans - to catch coolant for the coffee filter. Then clean them real good as in remove all of the old sealent if used and chase the threads with a die to clean the threads of rust (bolts that are not clean can and will sometimes seize up before they are in all the way, not good). Now use a putty knife or such to scrape clean the mating surface on the engine block. Now the secret... take the new water pump and about 1/2 a tube of silicone sealer ... lay a bead of sealer along the gasket surface then using your finger, press finger down into silicone and lift, move forward or back and dab up and down as you go... maybe 2 or 3 laps causing a bunch of little peaks to stick up 1/4 to 3/8 of an inch above the surface. Many, many little peaks, be careful not to leave any silicone on the inner pump surface as it will break free and get stuck where you don't want it(like in the heater). Lay the pump down in a safe place to cure overnite.....next day, reinstall pump... NO gasket!!!, the peaked silicone is wonderful, acts like an o-ring and comes off with the pump next time... use small bolts first, snug, not tight, not yet. Install the large bolts with a layer of silicone on the threads and around the end next to head. Tighten bolts in a crossing pattern like your tightening a cylinder head, re-install pulleys, belt & battery - in that order...the power steering pulley goes back on using the same shortened stud... oh,yea fill it with 50% antifreeze 50% distilled water.
The "Peaked Silicone" technique has never failed me... ever. Including a '73 Rolls Royce, "77 Bently, a Ferrari Daytona, a gagle of MB's and a few others including my '97 Park Avenue V6 and '64 Plymouth 318-V8...ever. ...cool.

Posted on Mar 27, 2009

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