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MG MGA - Coolant leaking

I have a 57 MGA and it just started leaking coolant fluid from what appears to be the bottom bolt on the water pump. It only leaks when the engine is hot and running. It is a substantial drip, drip, drip.
Is this a common spot to leak? How big a deal it is to remove the water pump and fix the leak? Is it likely the gasket that is bad?
Many thanks-
Bill Chandler
Ann Arbor, MI

W Chandler

Not a big job at all
Art Pearse

Water pump failure is not uncommon - they can last many years if fitted with an OE one but often repro ones fail after a very short time. The hardest part is removing the radiator and then the pump is easily accessible - just remove the bolts - clean off the remains of the old gasket - then fit the new pump and gasket - probably a good idea to fit a new fan belt and top and bottom hoses at the same time. Sometimes the old pump remains stuck to the front of the engine even after the bolts are removed - I had to "tap" mine off with a leather faced hammer.
Cam Cunningham

Regarding the water pump. When I had my engine rebuilt the mechanic ordered a new water pump. I believe it was made from aluminum and it leaked from day 1. He called the distributor and they said it will leak for awhile and it should stop. I'm not making this up. I bought a new one from S-F and it weighed considerably more than the faulty one. No leaks. Unbelievable.
Good Luck.

Some water pumps come with instructions that you should run them dry for a minute or so before installing the coolant. This is supposed to seat the carbon seal to prevent initial leakage. Seems kind of stupid that they wouldn't spin the thing dry for a minute on the production line so it wouldn't need to be done at time of installation. Regardless of such instructions, a new or rebuilt water pump should bot leak.

I had an alloy body water pump, purchased in 1989 but not installed until 1997. I had another alloy bodied water pump purchased in 1997. Bothe came from Moss Motors USA. Both of these had the generator mounting ear broken within a few months of installation. Just bad design. Apparently the alloy body was patterned after the iron body, and the generator mounting arm was just too thin with insufficient strength for the alloy part.

There was another difference in these alloy body pumps for MGA. The one purchased in 1989 had a particularly restrictive inlet port where the internal opening was only a half circle. Oddly, the didn't seem to affect function of the pump.

For at least a few years now Moss Motors USA has been supplying iron body water pumps for MGA, no more alloy units.
Barney Gaylord

This thread was discussed between 26/06/2012 and 27/06/2012

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