96 3.0 Water Pump
Ok, got a leak in the cooling system. Coming from on top of the engine, under the intake manifold. Pull manifold (fix the leaking valve cover gaskets while I'm there), replace the coolant tube running into the back of the water pump, new 'O' rings on the tubes, new hoses, new intake gaskets, fire it up, runs great.
Now it's leaking again. Not the same spot though (top of engine dry, transaxle bellhousing dry) cannot see exactly where it's leaking from. Hmmm water pump I think? I have a coolant smell when it warms up, it drip, drip, drip when it's cooling down on the passenger side of the van.
So I calls the local Dodge dealer to see how much it will cost to replace it (quit turning wrenches for a living 20 years ago)............... almost died from sticker shock. Whew!!!!
Anyway, the book says 5 hours to change the pump. Add an hour to change the timing belt, which will be done at the same time (145,000 miles). I've looked at the engine & cannot imagine how to get the room to remove the cover to access the pump/t-belt. I've looked in the manual, but the pictures in the manual show an engine sitting out in plain sight, not tucked up inside an engine bay.
Any ideas, suggestions, hard knocks? I have a month to change the dang thing, it's not that hard to do, except for clearance. Have all the tools to do it with the exception of a lift (have floor jack & stands to keep elevated if needed), just need an idea of how to access something that looks impossible to remove.
I would rather not spend almost a grand on an $800 van. Would rather do it myself if I can.
Advise this poor ol man please!!!!