00 Nissan Maxima Water Pump Repeatedly Fails

Soon after I bought this car, the water pump began giving out. It made grinding noises and leaked coolant. I replaced it with a new 50$ Bosch water pump. It was a pain in the butt since this water pump is driven off of the timing chain.

A week after replacing the pump, the NEW pump started going out.

Any ideas what would cause the pump to go keep going bad, so quickly after replacement? Could it be a timing chain issue? Should I have bought a more expensive pump? Would replacing the timing chain tensioner make a difference too?

Let me get this straight?

You tore the timing chain/tensioner out to replace the water pump, and reinstalled the old timing chain/tensioner?

Ya think?


I know it’s stupid but I coudn’t afford a new tensioner at the time. I could barely afford the cheaper water pump.

What is happening with the replacement pumps: noisy, sprocket wobbling, leaking, etc?

The first pump was noisy for several months, then it began leaking. It leaked so bad that I couldn’t even drive it to the shop to work on it. The bearing on the pump was so bad that there was about half an inch of movement in the shaft.The second pump worked with no noise or leaks for a week. After the first week, it started making the same grinding noises. I’m expecting it to start leaking again soon. I’m real nervous to do all the work again and just have it go bad a third time if there’s something else I might need to do to really fix the problem. I’m hoping that the second pump was just a cheap POS and that buying a more expensive pump will work, but who knows.

Did you follow the procedure shown here? Just wondering if excessive chain tautness could be behind this problem.


There’s always a possibility of getting inferior parts which can fail quickly but it would be unusual for it to happen repeatedly. Many parts can be kind of a toss-up anymore in regards to quality; especially if they’re remanufactured parts.

I’m not a fan of having the water pump driven by the timing chain. That can lead to engine oil contamination which in turn can damage the entire engine.

Any moving part related to the timing chain can make a similar sound. With the age of the car it’s possible that a tensioner or guide has gone bad. You’re going to have to open it up again.