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1989 Mercury Sable Water Pump Installation Instructions

The water pump for the 1989 Mercury Sable is made of aluminum. According to AutoZone, it is highly recommended that you use extended-life antifreeze with an aluminum pump, as extended-life antifreeze is less likely to cause deterioration to the pumps interior bolts. When changing the belt on the Sable, you should always check the water pump pulley. If it is loose or gives resistance, the water pump needs to be replaced. You should also pressure-test the cooling system to uncover a leaking water pump so it can be replaced before the leak grows, causing your Sable to overheat.

Tools Used: Drain pan, Set of wrenches, Set of sockets, Screwdriver, Anti-seize compound, RTV silicone, Torque wrench

Install Water Pump

Place the drain pan under the radiator petcock. Loosen the petcock and allow the antifreeze to drain. Break loose the four bolts holding the water pump pulley onto the water pump, but do not remove them yet. Just break them loose, as there is still tension on the belt. Loosen the accessory drive belt idler using a socket, then lift the belt off the pulleys.

Unbolt and remove the two nuts and the bolt holding the idler bracket onto the engine. Remove the bracket. Loosen the heater hose clamp on the water pump and pull the heater hose off the pump. Remove the four bolts you broke loose in Step 1. Leave the pulley on the pump, as there is no room between the inner fender and the water pump to get it off.

Unbolt and remove the 11 bolts holding the water pump onto the engine. The water pump uses two different-length bolts. Pay attention to where the longer bolts fit, or mark the bolts. Lift the water pump and pulley from the Sable as a single assembly. Clean the gasket-mating surface on the engine block using the screwdriver to scrape off stuck-on pieces of gasket material.

Coat the threads of the water pump retaining bolts with anti-seize compound. Smear a thin layer of RTV silicone on the gasket-mating surface of the water pump. Line the gasket up on the mating surface. Allow the gasket to set for a minute. Slide the pulley from the old pump onto the new pump.

Insert the water pump and pulley assembly into place under the hood, taking care not to knock the gasket around. Install the 11 retaining bolts and tighten each of them a few threads by hand. Push the pump onto the engine, then run the bolts in so they just hold the pump against the block. Tighten all of the bolts to 19 foot-pounds of torque except for the bolt at 12 o'clock, the bolt directly under it in the center of the pump, the bolt directly to the left of the center bolt, the bolt directly to the right of the center bolt, and the bolt located the furthest away from the center of the pump at the 3 o'clock position. Tighten these bolts to 7 foot-pounds of torque.

Install the four pulley bolts and tighten them to 16 foot-pounds of torque. Reconnect the heater hose to the water pump. Tighten the clamp. Reinstall the idle bracket. Route the belt over the pulleys. The belt routing diagram is located on the radiator shroud, underside of the hood or in the owner's manual. Reinstall the idler pulley while holding the belt in place. Tighten the bolt firmly. Tighten the radiator petcock, then refill the radiator. Start the engine and allow it to get to operating temperature. Check for leaks and top off the coolant as needed.

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