Q: Water pump blew, found there was no oil despite having it changed a month ago. Can no oil cause a water pump to blow?

asked by on September 24, 2016

I had the oil changed in my RAV4 a month ago. The engine starting making noises a few days ago, today all kinds of lights started coming on (trac control, battery light, then finally oil light right before it blew). It showed that it was running hot but immediately dropped all the way back to cool, then the pump blew. When I raised the hood it was smoking. I checked the oil and there was no oil in the engine. There was also a belt hanging down near the right front tire. Can no oil in the engine cause a water pump to blow?

My car has 125000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The oil works hand in hand with the cooling system to keep the engine cool. If the engine has no oil, there will be more friction inside the engine. This will cause moving parts to wear very quickly and then cause play in the valvetrain parts due to the wear. When this happens the engine starts to knock and sound really bad. If the engine is ran any longer, the water pump is very likely to blow out due to the extreme temperatures the engine is reaching. The engines cooling system is not strong enough to cool an engine that has no oil in it. I’m sorry this happened to you. If you would like more information on how water pumps work please click on the link. I am sorry this happened to you.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Issues with coolant, afraid of blown head gasket.

If the coolant is not leaking externally then it is leaking internally into the engine cylinder. I suggest looking inside the oil cap or on dipstick to see if the oil is contaminated with coolant. The oil would look milky...

Do you install timing chain guides on fwd VQ35DE? 2006 Nissan Altima V6

If you can hear the chain whining while you drive, it's time to quit driving the car. If the timing chain breaks while you are going down the road, the damage that will occur will probably mean replacing the engine....

My car will not start without a jump

This sounds like your alternator is going out. It maybe outputting just enough power to allow the car to run once you get it started, but it isn't putting out enough power to recharge your battery. Either way, you need...

Related articles

How Long Does a Water Pump Belt Last?
There There are a variety of components that make up the cooling system of a car. Most people fail to realize just how much heat their engine produces. Having the components of a car’s cooling system running at peak condition...
How to Buy a Toyota Prius
The Toyota Prius is one of the most popular hybrid models on the automotive market, and it comes with an array of perks. A Prius is more environmentally friendly than your average fuel-guzzling car, leaving less of an ecological footprint....
Top 10 PZEV Cars for Eco-Friendly Drivers
Teddy Leung / Shutterstock.com The whole idea of a PZEV (that is, a partial zero-emissions vehicle), seems paradoxical. You’d think it’d have to either be zero-emissions or not in the category at all. But as contradictory as...