1996 Honda Accord



February, 5, 2009 AT 3:27 PM

1996 Honda Accord 4 cyl Automatic 130k miles

I thought I had a leak in the raidiator. After several trips to a mechanic and no fix I had a back alley guy come and take a look. He said the water pump is bad and I need to replace that as well as the timing belt.

I dont know much about cars but after searching on the internet I have found that a lot of people suggest replaceing the following all at the same time;
-timing belt
-water pump
-balance shaft belt
-valve cover gasket
-flush coolent

3 Questions.
1. What is essential to replace when I am doing the water pump?
2. Can I safely drive the car for a few weeks short distances (5-10 miles trips) til I have the funds to get it fixed?
3. What can I expect to pay? I have seen estimates of $350 to $1000


2 Answers



February, 5, 2009 AT 8:34 PM

First make sure the leak is in fact coming from the water pump. You want to replace the timing belt, balancer belt, water pump, valve cover gasket, and engine coolant. Do not replace the tensioners unless they are bad or starting to fail. The technician needs to inspect them upon removal. They usually last a very long time. Do not pay extra for a flush unless the coolant is discolored or shows other signs that it is needed. If the thermostat has never been changed you may want to do it now but it can be done later just as well. If the car has not been overheating and the heater works well you may want to wait and do it when you need it. Other items that may be in question are spark plugs, valve adjustment, rocker arm o-rings, EGR ports plugged up with carbon, air filter, and more. There are many areas of your car that need to be maintained. Look for a Honda specialist that you feel comfortable with. Ask your friends where they take their Honda. Good luck.



February, 6, 2009 AT 12:04 AM

Thank you so much for your reply. It was very helpful.
I am not sure when anything was last replaced as my husband purchased the car only a few months ago.

My husband and I could not find a leak in the raidiator but tried putting some bars leak stop in at suggestion of a mechanic friend. That did nothing. The leak is so bad at this point the raidiator has to be filled daily. The car has only over heated twice when parked and running for a long period of time and the antifreeze was low due to the leaking.

Now the raidiator fan does not seem to be coming on as well. /Sigh

Thanks again : )

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