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Failed Water Pump Causes Timing Belt Failure


If you hate to see good Volvos die, look away now. Don’t click on this. Don’t read this. Go outside for a nice walk.

Driving to work this morning, my timing belt broke.

Chances are if you’re reading this you “get” that. It’s the Great Fear of any interference engine owner who DIYs.

Possibly you get it even if you don’t know how cars work.

If you know Volvo 5-cylinders, you know this is likely a very damaged engine now. “My timing belt broke” are words of loss. They are words of engine death, and for this age of a car, likely the end of the car’s life.

I have the water pump out. It looks like the bushing blew up and allowed the shaft to tip a bit. The blades gouged into the pump housing, got wedged, and sheared some teeth off of the timing belt. If I shake the water pump, it rattles – pieces of the bushing are still in the housing.

I’m of the mind that the bushing/bearing was packed with grease, and that grease ended up in my coolant. It also flung out all around the inside of my timing belt cover.

I’m unable to locate the invoice, so I don’t know who makes it – it was 4 years ago and we’ve moved since then. The water pump doesn’t have any identifying brand on it. On the housing, it says ‘1D6P’, and on the end of the shaft it says “12 12 4 WR”.

’96 Platinum Wagon: broken timing belt. 7:18am

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