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2008 Avalon Limited
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Discussion Starter #1
My water pump went on my 2008 avalon. I started to do the repair job my self since I have gotten quotes of $700.00 to have this done.

I removed the top bracket on the engine per the repair manual, but am not able to remove the mounting bracket underneath it, this has 4 long bolts and two short bolts holding this to the engine. When I try to get the last bolt out, I can move the bracket a bit, but the A/C lines are in the way and if I move up a bit, the wheel well is in the way.

How do I get this bracket out? Do I need to remove the right motor mount and raise the engine? if I do this, how high up can I raise the engine.
 

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'06 Avalon
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There are 6 bolts that have to come out. Staring at it from the passenger side and starting from the left, you have bolts that are the following length. The length I provide is the length of the shaft and does not include the bolt head length:

3.5" - it's farthest to the left and down under a bit - removable
4.5" - this is the one holding up your progress.
1.75" - just above the 4.5" just mentioned - removable
4.5" - removable
4.5" - removable
1.75" - removable - the bolt farthest to the right.



Remove all except the 4.5" mentioned above. Some were more challenging that others, but they came out. Once you have removed the 5 that will come out, withdraw the last one some, but do not try to pull it all the way to the a/c lines. You want to pull back enough so that the threaded part of that bolt does not hang up. Wiggle the bracket around to get it loose. In the course of doing all of this, the bolt may have to be pulled back some or pushed in some, depending on which way it may have moved.

It might also help to move the power steering fluid reservoir out of the way a bit. I don't recall exactly, but I want to say it's mounting bracket(s) or some part of that piece caused an obstruction of some kind. Having this out of the way improved access to the area you are dealing with.

This part is named -> Engine Mounting Bracket Front No. 1 LH

Not saying this is fun, but it can be done.
 

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2008 Avalon Limited
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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for the quick reply, I am going to try to take that bracket out tonight.

I am looking at the water pump for the Avalon, it is the most asinine design that I have seen for a water pump, I counted 18 bolts to hold it onto the engine.

Couple more questions
1. Are there any suggestions for which water pump to purchase, I see prices from $49.00 up to a Bosch at $152.00?
2. Can all of the bolts be easily accessed to be removed? My manual says that the two idler pulleys need to be removed.
3. Can I use rtv on the gasket to hold it in place?
4. I am assuming that the sequence to tighten the pump is from the center out. Any guidance on the sequence or lessons learned?


Thank you again!
 

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'06 Avalon
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I haven't done the water pump on my '06 Avalon yet. I know about the bracket brought up in your original post because I removed it while replacing the serpentine belt. I was staring at the water pump removal instructions thinking I was viewing the serpentine belt removal instructions. It wasn't necessary to remove this bracket for a belt change, but I found that reinstallation of the belt was simplified by doing so. Having that bracket out of the way made fitting the belt on the top pulleys a lot easier.

Update - with regard to the water pump gasket. I had to replace a water pump on a 2004 Tacoma baseline 2.4 liter 4 cyl a few yrs. ago. The gasket was metal. First time I had seen that. Spoke with a tech at the dealership where I purchased the water pump. He told me no sealant was used with this type of gasket. Not sure what the '08 Avalon water pump comes with, but if it's equipped with a metal gasket, you can skip the sealant. I did as the tech said and have had no leaks in that vehicle. Obviously if the '08 Avalon water pump gasket is non-metal, a sealant will be required. There are as many opinions on what to use as there are sealants.
 

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2008 Avalon Limited
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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Wanted to continue my experience of replacing the water pump in a 2008 Toyota Avalon Limited. This is a job that can be done by the backyard mechanic but is not a job that can be accomplished easily in one day. I had the luxury of having an extra car to drive during the time it took me to figure out the removal and installation of the water pump.

Top line tips to accomplish this job successfully:
1. Raise the right front of the car off the ground, remove the front right tire. Put this side of the car on jack stands. As you do this job, there are parts of the water pump that you have to access from the top of the engine and other parts that you access from the right hand side wheel well.

2. The top engine stabilizing bracket is easy to remove, but keep track of the bolts that are used to install and hold this on since there are 6 bolts and all different lengths.
a. Refer to this drawing for reference on the brackets: http://www.villagetoyotaparts.com/showAssembly.aspx?ukey_assembly=334967

3. For the Engine Mounting Bracket Front No. 1 LH, this is a bit tricky to remove since there are quite a few bolts that hold this onto the engine also. Refer to the posting from Mike about the removal of this part.

4. You will have to remove the serpentine belt from the engine bay so that you can get to all of the bolts on the water pump.
a. To do this, you need to relieve the tension on the belt by locking the belt tensioner into place, there is a ¼” hole in the tensioner and you can slip in a drill bit to lock it into place.
b. Remove the belt from the engine bay.
c. Remove the two idler pulleys, front and rear, and make sure that you keep the bolts and the two washers in the correct order. I taped them together and marked them ‘Front’ and ‘Back’. b.
c. Remove the pulley from the belt tensioner; there is a left handed thread on this bolt. There is no need to remove the tensioner from the engine.
d. I replaced the serpentine belt, $33.00 from Mid Atlantic Toyota (http://www.midatlantictoyotaparts.com/parts-catalog/toyota/avalon/2008/limited/3-5l-v6-gas/cooling-system/belts-and-pulleys)

5. When you loosen the 4 bolts that hold the pulley to the water pump, you will not be able to remove the pulley. You will have to remove all of the bolts on the water pump, there are three that are hidden behind the pulley, and then take the water pump out with the pulley dangling. Remember to do the reverse when you put the water pump back in.

6. Keep track of where the bolts go on the water pump, there are 18 bolts total that hold this on to the engine, with two different size bolts, a 10 MM head and a 12 MM head. I drew a picture of the bolt locations on a piece of cardboard and as I removed the bolts, I punched a hole in the card board to store the bolt. This trick made the installation really easy ( I learned this from my father).

7. There are two bolts on the water pump that are just blocked a bit by the pulley on the power steering pump. You can only loosen or tighten these only with an open ended wrench. There is no room to get a socket in there nor is there room to get the boxed end part of a wrench in there. Once the bolts are loose, you can just slip them past the power steering pulley, so no need to remove the power steering pump.

8. There are two o rings (16325-31010 HOUSING GASKET) that are on the thermostat housing (Part Number 16323-0P030 HOUSING) replace these as a precaution. I purchased the parts from Mid Atlantic Toyota (http://www.midatlantictoyotaparts.com)
a. Delivery from Mid Atlantic took 3 business days and this was during the holiday rush around Christmas.

9. The water pump can be removed from the engine bay without jacking up the engine, you sort of pull up a bit on the whole pump, maybe an inch, then rotate it about 25 degrees in a counter clock wise rotation to take it out, you will have to be very gentile with it, but it does come out of the bay. Installation is the reverse.

Good luck if you have to do this job.

Lastly, and this is to Toyota, I hope you monitor these posts, I am disappointed in the quality of this water pump and how short the life of this part was, since the car only has 80,000 miles on it. The water pump is not designed for maintainability and has made me consider not purchasing a Toyota next time I get a car.
 

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1996 Avalon
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The way ive seen it, I dont actually think its faulty water pumps. It seems like all the water pump issues starting popping up after Toyota switched to the super long life coolant. Just my 2 cents
 

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2008 Avalon Limited
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Discussion Starter #8
Coolant

Interesting feedback, thank you.

In my case it was the water pump that went south, the bearing was shot. I have always parked the car in the garage since I have owned it but the week before the pump went south, I parked the car outside and the temperature was well below freezing for three days. Also when I drove the car, there was no heat in the cabin, but the operating temperature on the gauges was showing normal.

I noticed the coolant on the driveway on December 13, 2013 and did get a sample of it, it no longer smelled like engine coolant, just seemed like water. I wonder if the coolant broke down since I got the car and froze on those cold nights causing water to get into the bearing housing?
 

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'06 Avalon
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jmateyk:

You live in Pennsylvania where winters are no doubt cold. Your car was garage-bound; then for a brief spell left out in the cold. Then the leak.

In addition to a 2006 Avalon, I have a 2004 baseline Toyota Tacoma 2.4L 4 cyl.

Where I live winters are nothing like they are where you live.

In 2010 I returned from a vacation to find my truck living in 15 degree F temps. Laugh all you want, but where I live, that's rare. I noticed a wet spot on the driveway beneath the crank pulley. The trunk sounded fine. No bearing noise. Once temps got above 35F or so, the leaking stopped. The leaking was slight, but there. A day or two later, temps were in the 20s and the dripping started again. Pink coolant in the catch bucket. Not a lot, but there.

My research revealed the seal was bad. The truck had 60K on the odometer when this occurred. I replaced the water pump with a dealer item when things warmed up - early April 2011. Truck now has 95K on the odometer and the water pump leak has not occurred.

Perhaps not a scientific observation, but I find it interesting that your Avalon and my '04 baseline 2.4L Tacoma experienced the same issue when the temps dropped.

My wife's '06 Avalon is garage-bound year round. No leaks.

Could cold temps affect Toyota water pump seals?
 

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05 Avalon Limited
05 Avalon Limited
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336 Posts
Are there any suggestions for which water pump to purchase, I see prices from $49.00 up to a Bosch at $152.00?
Which one did you end up buying? Looks like I'm gonna have to do it too. I don't know if I should get one from Toyota since the mileage on my car is only 80000 and the pump started leaking.
Thanks in advance.
 

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Which one did you end up buying? Looks like I'm gonna have to do it too. I don't know if I should get one from Toyota since the mileage on my car is only 80000 and the pump started leaking.
Thanks in advance.

Ask yourself if you want to repeat this task anytime soon. Anybody's pump can go bad early on, but I'd bet OEM pumps as a whole last longer.

As has been discussed recently in a coil thread, you might be able to find the actual OEM pump in an A/C Delco box. Not saying that's so, just using this as an example. Toyota's OEM pump is likely laying inside of "somebody's" box.

Maybe FixItt knows?
 

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ASE CMAT L1 MRRT
09 Avalon XL
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826 Posts
Ask yourself if you want to repeat this task anytime soon. Anybody's pump can go bad early on, but I'd bet OEM pumps as a whole last longer.

As has been discussed recently in a coil thread, you might be able to find the actual OEM pump in an A/C Delco box. Not saying that's so, just using this as an example. Toyota's OEM pump is likely laying inside of "somebody's" box.

Maybe FixItt knows?
For Toyota water pumps, we use strictly dealer parts at my recommendation. The aftermarket Gates pump comes with a cheap fiber gasket, whereas the Toyota pump comes with a metal gasket with sealing beads on both sides. The improved water pump from Toyota looks different from the Gates pump, and the Gates pump looks like the pump being removed, so it is the old design as well.

When we have a bad Toyota power steering pump, we have learned that the only pump to use is a Toyota pump. Several companies make new power steering pumps but even those have issues. Rebuilt is out of the question...we have been burned way too many times by Toyota rebuilt power steering pumps either not developing pressure or leaking shortly after the install.
 

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05 Avalon Limited
05 Avalon Limited
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Thanks guys!

Toyota pump comes with a metal gasket with sealing beads on both sides.
So if I order the pump (1610009441) it will come with the gasket in the box?
Also jmateyk mentioned that there are two o-rings (1632531010) for the Housing. Are they both the same diameter? Here is what I found on eBay: Toyota OEM Water Pump. This one comes with the gasket and 2 different diameter o-rings. Is this what I need or I should order two of 1632531010?
 

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My water pump went on my 2008 avalon. I started to do the repair job my self since I have gotten quotes of $700.00 to have this done.

I removed the top bracket on the engine per the repair manual, but am not able to remove the mounting bracket underneath it, this has 4 long bolts and two short bolts holding this to the engine. When I try to get the last bolt out, I can move the bracket a bit, but the A/C lines are in the way and if I move up a bit, the wheel well is in the way.

How do I get this bracket out? Do I need to remove the right motor mount and raise the engine? if I do this, how high up can I raise the engine.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Hi, I just had this done on my 08 Avvy Limited, it was around $500 at an independent dealer that specializes in Toyotas. I asked, and they said they didn't have to deal with the motor mount at all, but they did say that removing that bracket is quite tricky, but necessary. Some folks say that removing the right front wheel helps. Good luck! Not an easy job I'm sure.
 

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ASE CMAT L1 MRRT
09 Avalon XL
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it is the most asinine design that I have seen for a water pump
Oh, there are worse.

GM Quad4 you have to remove the exhaust manifold for access

Old Pontiac OHC engine you rotated the water pump to adjust the timing belt. Between the pump and the block there is a paper gasket. What do you think happens to that paper gasket when you loosen the water pump and rotate it?

Most timing belt engines have the water pump driven by the timing belt. This is on average a 4-5 hour job.

Nissan Maxima - the water pump is driven by the timing chain, and it like a cartridge that goes in the front of the timing cover. When you are replacing this pump, don't let the timing chain go slack otherwise you turned the job into a nightmare.

I agree the Avalon pump could have been designed for easier service, but they planned on the pump lasting longer than the old design did.

I did one of these on a Highlander, and although it wasn't fun, there was nothing that made me cuss.

The only time I cuss on a job is when the engineer clearly didn't think and made a simple part replacement take all day when, on other vehicles, it is easy.
 

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I just did the waterpump on my 08 highlander. Same motor as the Avalon. 3.5 v6 I believe.
It can be done in a weekend if you have all the correct parts. The highlander setup will be slightly different because of the 4wd. Most important thing to remember is torque your wp bolts to factory specs. Keep track of what bolt goes where. There will be a lot if bolts to deal with.
 

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510man
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The aftermarket Gates pump comes with a cheap fiber gasket, whereas the Toyota pump comes with a metal gasket with sealing beads on both sides. The improved water pump from Toyota looks different from the Gates pump, and the Gates pump looks like the pump being removed, so it is the old design as well.
I have a new Gates pump I just received. It has a fiber gasket and a metal gasket. Instructions are generic so not much help. Now what?

As for torquing the water pump bolts back on, you won't be able to do that on the Avalon. It's extreme difficult to get any kind of a wrench on about half the bolts although I was able to use a boxed end wrench or socket on 100% of the water pump bolts. No way you'll get a torque wrench in there for 50% of the bolts.

Sure hope the engineer that designed this POS engine lost their job. A water pump should be made an easy service item by design since it is a known service on ALL water cooled vehicles. The Chevy 350 is a good example of how to service a water pump. Takes maybe 30 minutes to change. By comparison, the 3.5L Toyota engine is the best example of an engine screaming for a remote electric water pump I've ever seen. I've been hung on the one 4.5" bolt in Mike's note for several hours. I'm getting ready to lift the engine to get it out.
 

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510man
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I found a simple solution for the troublesome bracket bolt when doing a water pump R&R. A picture is worth a thousand words and a video is worth a thousand pics.

It took hours to get out and minutes to put back in. Wish I thought of this when I started removing the water pump.

Hope this helps somebody save some time and frustration.

 

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Excellent tip

I have to commend you for your clever tip and the video which clearly explained the "how and why" of putting an access dent in the fender well!
 
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