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blown oil cooler line - 2 min from home after driving 2hrs on highway

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blown oil cooler line - 2 min from home after driving 2hrs on highway

Old 03-27-2016, 08:14 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 34
Default blown WP - 2 min from home after driving 2hrs on highway

Hi everyone,

I just figured I'd share the good and the bad... I'll update as I figure out what happened. A few minutes from home the batt light came on and a little 'smoke' starts to come out of the hood..... pull her over to discover that there's fluid everywhere and it slipped the belt off also. Against my better judgement, I drove it maybe 5min to limp it home on batt power. It died right at my driveway so there was just enough juice...

2nd look.... catastrophic failure (ok... 'very aggressive' but not deadly) of the water pump! I had no idea they could fail that fast and that it could be that exciting. I will do the r&r myself but was curious how many of you would swap out the fan clutch while in there regardless???

The time between the pump failure and loss of steering/alt, etc. was really just seconds. The entire cooling system was empty in maybe 2min max! Luckily the spun/chopped belt didn't take out anything else.


Last edited by neex; 03-30-2016 at 08:21 AM. Reason: it was a WP not cooler line (yes I know the diff but it was dark and I was too lazy/pissed to investigate at the moment)
Old 03-29-2016, 08:29 PM
dcotter0579's Avatar
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Detroit suburb
Posts: 4,987

Where does the "oil cooler line " in the title of your post come in?

You should be able to drive a lot more than 5 mins without an alternator, especially after a road trip to charge the battery.

If the engine didn't seize, you're probably ok. Driving with no coolant is risky though, even 5 minutes.

If the fan clutch is working, I'd leave it. If you have reason to doubt it, then replace it.

When the water pump seizes, it will usually shred the serpentine belt right away, and you then lose the alternator and power steering at the same time.
Old 03-30-2016, 08:19 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 34

I realize that it was confusing but when I discovered it was coolant and not trans oil, I had already posted. It was very close to home so I limped it anyway (likely against better judgement as I know a warped head will be a reminder of my stupidity if it comes down to it). I wasn't sure how to change the title beyond editing the orig post - apologies for the confusion and thanks for the help. I decided to go with an OE Mopar water pump and a Four Seasons HD clutch. I haven't done the work yet but I'll update when done so we can assess my decision making abilities... I was very surprised at how similar the dex coolant (or whatever it was - I didn't do the last change) is to ATF is appearance. I should have investigated further but I had 2 kids and an angry wife with me so I gave them my car and limped the Apsen a block or 3.

Last edited by neex; 03-30-2016 at 08:27 AM.
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