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36 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
The 2002 V6 Optima with 150,xxx miles is leaking coolant on the
passenger side.
The dripping coolant shows up under the crankshaft pulley.

The only thing on that side of the engine is the water pump which was replaced
maybe 25,000 miles ago when I did the timing belt.

I am disappointed to have to do it, but I am going to remove everything on that side and go look.

The heater hoses on the V6 Optima go from the thermostat housing to the firewall more on the drivers side. They look good.

I did the radiator (top tank seam blew open) and radiator hoses recently.
My guess is the next weakest spot just opened.

There do not appear to be any coolant hoses anywhere near the serpentine belt. so that is why I think water pump.

If anyone has any thoughts on where the coolant is coming from please post an reply.

36 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
SOLUTION: Water pump

Turns out the water pump had 50,000 miles on it. More than I had realized, but still to soon to leak. The removed pump looked like new.

But a pressure test confirmed that it was leaking out the hole that is behind the AC compressor.

With a pressure tester on the radiator and my finger over the weep hole the pressure did not drop and no water leaked.
When I let go a larger amount came out.

So if you have a drip near the right side, this is probably it.

The job to do the pump is the same as a timing belt.

As a word of encouragement to you all, I had it apart in about 1.5 hours max.
A trip to the Harbor Freight for a radiator pressure tester (almost an hour).
A trip to the parts store for a pump (half hour).
Cleaning off the old gasket material.
Out to dinner with the family (2 hours).
Reassembled before the sun went down.

In other words, a one day job. Just get in and do it.

Look up my write up on doing the timing belt. It will save you a lot of time.

This time around I used air wrench to break and set the crankshaft bolt.
Used more blue loctite .

Good luck to you all if you have to do this.

What I do like about this engine is no puller is needed to get the power steering pump or crankshaft pulley off, they come off by hand.

Drop the timing belt tensioner and go to a vise to compress it and make a pin to hold it
Because I had replaced the timing belt tensioner last time around I had the pin already.
You can make one from piano/music wire (best) or a small nail ( a little weak/soft but okay).
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