1997 Buick Lesabre



June, 30, 2007 AT 2:15 PM

I have a 1997 Buick Lesabre, 3.8 " K" engine. There is a water leak at a plastic fitting above the water pump, I believe the fitting is called a heater bypass pipe. It is basically a 90 degree plastic elbow that has an o-ring on both ends. To the best of my knowledge the fitting plugs into the block and into the belt tensioner.&Quot; go figure" anyway the part is under $10 and the labor is just under $300. Is there a step by step proceedure I can get for replacing the belt tensioner. If so I believe with the new plastic 90 my leak will be fixed. Any help with this greatly appreciated.


2 Answers



August, 19, 2007 AT 10:03 PM

I have the same problem. Just figured it out after going out to buy a replacement water pump. Thought the leak was there and before I started tearing down the pipe above dripped. The problem has persisted for weeks now and I could not find the leak anywhere! Finally found it. Thank you for your post. I was just trying to figure out how to replace that pipe. Did you get it done somewhere or did you do yourself? Just wondering how the pipe is held in place. :



August, 20, 2007 AT 5:24 AM

The coolant elbow just slides into the belt tensioner assembly and the lower intake manifold. To replace it you will need to remove the belt tensioner assembly. To remove that tensioner you need to remove the belt, then remove the alternator. Remove the bolts that secure the tensioner to the block. Then you need to carefuly remove the tensioner. They have been known to try and stick and break where the fitting goes into the timing cover. I would replace the seals for th heater pipes aswell.


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