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Q: Is it okay to drive while in need of a water pump?

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My car has been unofficially diagnosed as needing a water pump due to a leak of my coolant in the bottom front of the engine block. Is it safe to drive the vehicle short distances if I keep the coolant tank filled with water and it doesn't overheat(coolant is just a little expensive) without causing further damage to the vehicle?

2002 Ford Focus wagon ztw

A: Hello - if in fact, the water pump is leaki...

Hello - if in fact, the water pump is leaking as has been diagnosed, it is definitely NOT a good idea to continue driving with a known water pump leak. Water pumps have become more reliable over the years for the most part, and do a remarkable job of holding coolant under pressure even while the water pump bearing wears out. The result, however, is a sudden and complete failure of the pump when you least expect it, frequently with complete coolant loss, and almost instant overheating. I would recommend having a water pump replacement completed by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, to diagnose this problem, get an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs.

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