The water pump on the 1996 Pontiac Sunfire is easily accessible with the appropriate tools. You might need to remove the water pump because it is leaking, the bearings have gone bad, or the pulley wobbles and throws the belt. The bearings and pulley could also lock up and tear the belt. If the pump is leaking, it should be changed immediately, as there won’t be enough coolant in the system and the engine will overheat.
Tools Used: Tools, Set of wrenches, Drain pan, Set of sockets, Scraper, Rags, RTV silicone, Torque wrench
Install Water Pumps
Disconnect the battery negative cable, using the appropriate wrench. Set the cable aside, ensuring that it doesn’t touch metal. Slide the drain pan under the radiator petcock. Loosen the petcock and allow the coolant to drain into the drain pan. If the coolant is less than five years old and is clean, you can reuse it.
Remove the accessory drive belts. If your engine has a serpentine belt, fit the socket on the bolt in the center of the tensioner pulley. Rotate the pulley toward the center of the engine to loosen tension on the belt. Lift the belt off the pulleys. If your engine has V-belts, loosen the adjusting bolt on the alternator’s slider bracket. Push the alternator toward the engine to loosen tension on the belt. Lift the belt off the alternator. Repeat this process for the air conditioning compressor and the power steering pump.
Unplug the wiring harness connector on the alternator. Remove the power wire, using the appropriate wrench. Put the nut back onto the stud, so you don’t lose it. Unbolt the alternator and its bracket, using the appropriate socket and remove the alternator and its bracket.