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Old 06-18-2013, 12:27 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
2,074 posts, read 3,565,450 times
Reputation: 2034

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My buddy has a late 80s Chevy P/U with a 350. He was telling me that it was making some weird noises. He described them, in the best way he could, as a large rubbing noise. I had him fire it up and one of the noises I heard was a loud clinking noise. I noticed the top corners of the fan blades were showing signs of wear, so I grabbed the fan and noticed it move, about a 1/2" in either direction, as well as the water pump pulley. The noise I was talking about, we got it to make that noise once. It was kind of weird combo of gurgling, and rubber rubbing. I told him it's more than likely all related to the water pump disintegrating, but he's convinced that it's the same sound his last truck made when the oil pump made
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Old 06-18-2013, 12:34 PM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
26,610 posts, read 63,057,239 times
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Do you hear crinking and blurping too? If so I am certain you are right.
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Old 06-18-2013, 12:34 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
28,548 posts, read 62,287,227 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by topher5150 View Post
My buddy has a late 80s Chevy P/U with a 350.
He was telling me that it was making some weird noises.
Call it 1987. This 26yo vehicle likely has a lot of other issues beyond the water pump.
Start a list.
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Old 06-18-2013, 12:47 PM
 
3,185 posts, read 5,796,406 times
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This is a case where you do not run the engine until the pump is replaced. Reason is the pump shaft is very close to breaking and this will allow the fan to ruin the radiator and anything else it hits. It may even go up and cut a hole in the hood.. It is a 50 buck repair that can cause 500 bucks in damage in about 2 seconds. If he cranks that engine before it is fixed he is a fool..........and he better have plenty of cash.
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Old 06-18-2013, 01:59 PM
 
Location: U.S.A.
3,305 posts, read 9,538,401 times
Reputation: 2945
If the pulley is moving like that then yes the bearing is shot in the water pump and the impeller is now grinding on the block. The clearance is very tight, so it does not take much play.

Water pumps on those engines are literally around the $20 range and take about 30 min to replace. I have done one on the side of the road they are so easy. Your friend is simply an idiot if he refuses to fix such an obvious problem. Let it fail, he’ll get what is deserved.
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Old 06-18-2013, 04:27 PM
 
4,232 posts, read 6,068,736 times
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More than likely its not the water pump, if the water pump had that much slop coolant would be pouring out of the front. I'm guessing the fan clutch is done.
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Old 06-18-2013, 04:37 PM
 
Location: Apple Valley Calif
7,475 posts, read 20,224,177 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fargobound View Post
More than likely its not the water pump, if the water pump had that much slop coolant would be pouring out of the front. I'm guessing the fan clutch is done.
...and IF it is the fan clutch, providing it has a fan clutch, it also took out the pump, so you replace both....
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Old 06-18-2013, 07:57 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
29,855 posts, read 54,568,102 times
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Even a fan clutch is cheap, maybe $50.
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:24 PM
 
Location: Earth
4,227 posts, read 21,125,190 times
Reputation: 2223
Tell tale sign of a bad water pump on an sbc is water leaking from the weep hole. Then again you shouldn't have the play in it as you claim.
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Old 06-19-2013, 01:56 AM
 
Location: Ft. Myers
17,628 posts, read 11,205,993 times
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There should be zero movement side to side in that water pump. Remove the belt and move it back and forth again. You should be able to see if only the fan clutch is wobbling, or if the shaft going into the pump is moving. I am betting fan clutch for the reasons others have said, like coolant would be seeping out.

Also as mentioned, fix it quickly. It is warning you it is about to explode. A friend had one go and the fan blades louvered his hood for him, but not the way he would have wanted it to happen. You also do not want to be standing around looking at it spin, people have been injured or killed when they let go. While you have it off examine each blade carefully for signs of cracking. They do fail and the results ain't pretty.

Don
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