Coolant Leak


May 22, 2013
Since the problems never end on this car, I have discovered a coolant leak. It had a bad radiator cap, so I replaced it. The previous cap was a 13lb cap, the new one is the 16lb cap that was shown as the correct cap. Now I noticed there is a leak to the upper left of the water pump, below the thermostat housing. It appears to be coming from behind the water pump, not the actual water pump. Did some reading and have read it could be the timing cover gasket or a bad water pump. Just wanted your guys opinion on what I should replace and how hard it will be to do.
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That is a very common place for coolant leaks as the timing cover is aluminum and over time corrodes from age and neglect of coolant changes.. I would check around the stat housing first, as it might be corroded or leaking and dripping down the front of the timing cover. The timing covers are also prone to corroding and leaking from repeated removal. The back of the water pump normally doesn't start to leak unless it's been removed and warped.

Go and rent a coolant pressure tester to see where the leak is. If it's the timing cover you will need to pull everything off the front- radiator, fan, shroud, crank pulley, belt, A/C bracket and alt bracket to get to the water pump and timing cover.
I had the engine running and can see the coolant puddling and dripping from what appears to be the timing cover area. I can tell its not the thermostat housing, I just replaced the thermostat about 2 weeks ago and when I felt around the area this morning, it is dry. So I guess I will be putting in a new timing cover gasket and while I am at it, I might as well replace the water pump and gaskets. Has anyone had the actual timing cover fail causing it to leak coolant, or is pretty much just a gasket thing? Also, any real reason to use a 13psi cap instead of the 16psi?

Also, if it is a leak from the timing cover gasket, is it ok to drive the car a bit and just replace the coolant after each trip until I can do the repair?
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