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Jerry, Master Mechanic
Category: Pontiac
Satisfied Customers: 17218
Experience:  ASE Master tech. 30+ years mechanic, shop forman, service manager
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1996 Pontiac grand am: water pump..2.4L inline..driven..timing chain

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hi just wondering how hard it is to change a water pump on a 1996 Pontiac GrandAM with the 2.4L inline 4 engine. I understand that pump is driven by the timing chain? Do I need any special tools to do this?

Hello and welcome to Just, Super mechanic here. Please DON’T hit accept until you are completely satisfied with the answer. About your vehicle.

It is not that it's hard to do the water pump, it doews take some time though and there are not any special tools required. It does run off the timing chain.

Labor Skill
Water Pump
Replace B 4.1 5.9


  1. Negative battery cable.
  2. Drain and recover coolant.
  3. Oxygen sensor connector.
  4. Upper exhaust manifold heat shield and heater hose quick connect from heater outlet pipe.
  5. Coolant inlet housing bolt through exhaust manifold.
  6. Raise vehicle.
  7. Exhaust manifold brace to manifold bolt. See Exhaust System.
  8. Manifold to exhaust pipe bolts and heater outlet pipe bracket to bans bolt.
  9. Coolant inlet housing assembly to water pump cover bolt.
  10. Exhaust pipe from exhaust manifold. See Exhaust System.
  11. Pull down and back on the exhaust pipe to disengage it from the exhaust manifold.
CAUTION: DO NOT rotate flex coupling more than 4 degrees (step 11) as damage may occur.
  1. Coolant inlet pipe from oil pan. Leave the lower radiator hose attached and pull down on the coolant inlet pipe to disengage it from the water pump. Leave the coolant, inlet pipe hanging.
  2. Lower vehicle.
  3. Brake vacuum pipe from cam housing. See Brakes and Traction Control.
  4. Exhaust manifold to cylinder head retaining nuts.
  5. Exhaust manifold, seals and gaskets. See Exhaust System.
  6. Front timing chain cover. See Engine.
  7. Timing chain tensioner. See Engine.
  8. Water pump cover to cylinder block bolts.
  9. Water pump assembly to timing chain housing nuts (3).
  10. Water pump and cover assembly.
  11. Water pump cover to water pump assembly bolts (5). Clean all sealing surfaces.
CAUTION: Prior to installing water pump read the entire procedure. Pay special attention to the tightening sequence to avoid part damage and to insure proper sealing.


  1. Water pump cover to water pump assembly and install bolts HAND TIGHT.
  2. Cover to block bolts hand tight.
  3. Pump to chain housing nuts hand tight.
  4. Lube Oaring on coolant inlet pipe with an anti-freeze solution and slide pipe into water pump cover install bolts hand tight.
  5. With specified gaps, torque in sequence as follows:
    1. Pump to chain housing nuts. Tighten nuts to 26 Nm (19 ft. lbs.) .
    2. Pump cover to pump assembly. Tighten bolts to 14 Nm (124 inch lbs.) .
    3. Cover to block, bottom bolt first. Tighten bolts to26 Nm (19 ft. lbs.) .
    4. Coolant inlet pipe assembly to cover. Tighten bolt to 14 Nm (124 inch lbs.) .
  1. Exhaust manifold and new gaskets. See Exhaust System.
  2. Exhaust manifold to cylinder head retaining nuts.
  3. Brake vacuum pipe to cam housing.
  4. Raise vehicle.
  5. Index exhaust manifold bolts into exhaust pipe flange. See Exhaust System.
  6. Exhaust pipe to exhaust, manifold, land, heater outlet pipe bracket to trans.
  7. Turn both exhaust bolts in evenly to avoid cocking the exhaust pipe and binding the bolts. Turn bolts in until fully seated.
  8. Coolant inlet pipe to oil pan. Tighten bolt to 26 Nm (19 ft. lbs.) .
  9. Timing chain tensioner. See Engine.
  10. Timing chain cover. See Engine.
  11. Lower vehicle.
  12. Exhaust manifold brace to manifold bolt.
  13. Manifold to exhaust, pipe nuts. See Exhaust System.
  14. Position heat sleeve on heater hose, then heater hose to the heater outlet pipe. Inspect quick connect retainer, pull heater hose to verify connection.
  15. Upper heat shield to the exhaust manifold.
  16. Oxygen sensor connector.
  17. Fill radiator with coolant.
  18. Negative battery cable. Tighten bolt to 16 Nm (12 ft. lbs.) . Inspect for leaks.

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