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Old 03-29-2011, 11:15 PM
dewzram dewzram is offline
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Kansas City, Missouri
Age: 35
Posts: 38
Gender: Male
Vehicle: 2000 Dodge Ram 1500 4x4 QC
Trim Level: Laramie
Color: Patriot Blue
Engine: 1998-2001 360ci (5.9L) Magnum V8 245hp(standard), 250hp(Sport package)
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Default Water Pump & Timing-Chain Cover Gasket Replaced!

Hey fellow 5.9'ers, just wanted to say that for the past year I've had a slow but annoying coolant leak that caused me to add a quart of coolant about every three weeks. I couldn't for the life of me figure out where it was coming from so just figured it was the Water Pump so I'd let it go till it really started leaking heavily. Well that never happened so I got the itch to finally tear into it and figure out what was really leaking. So...got the alternator and a/c compressor removed and out of the way for a better look, still couldn't quite figure out where it was fresh and leaking from, still didn't appear to be the Pump. So.....drained the coolant, took the fan and shroud off for ease of working on it, got the pump out and gave it a good inspection. It still didn't look like the pump was leaking, however upon closer inspection, I noticed corrosion all long the left side of the Timing Chain Cover. So what the heck, removed the harmonic balancer and took the Timing Chain Cover off. Vualla! There is my leak. Behind the cover was a puddle of coolant and half of the gasket was completely ate away and leaking. I was relieved to finally find the real culprut to the leak. So, wrote down a very long shopping list of everything I wanted to replace while I had it all apart. I checked the Timing Chain and it looked very good and was in spec so I figured I'd leave it. Off to O'reilly's I went. Every part I requested was in-stock and came to $286. What I ended up replaced in this job was the Timing Chain Cover gasket and crank sleeve/seal. New water pump, thermostat (factory 192), thermostat housing tube, all 3 hoses, tensioner pulley (since the spring didn't seem to be working that great and bearing was noisy), idler pulley (noisy bearing), new coolant, and a fresh oil change since I think some coolant got in the oil since you have to loosen the front of the oil pan, I wasn't sure but figured the oil change was good insurance. Definitely was one of the more time consuming water pump jobs I've done. Not hard, just a lot more to remove than I've had to in the past. Anyway, all is good, zero leaks and oddly, the thing is even running better, seems to have a just a tiny bit more pep to it and with the new pulley's, the thing is super quiet running.

I wanted to post my findings on here just in-case anyone was having the same mysterious slow coolant leak and couldn't figure it out. Spent most of my Sunday doing the job, but was well worth it and nice to replace some of those 11 year old parts that could be questionable anytime.
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