Hey guys, I’m in the middle of (and probably going to be over my head in) the process of changing the timing belt on a 1996 Mercury Mystique 2.0L I4. I haven’t gotten too far yet, because I’m stuck on how to get the water pump pulley off. It’s got four tiny 8mm bolts attaching the pulley to the pump, and it’s driven by the serpentine belt. I need to remove it because it blocks access to the timing belt, and anyway I want to replace the water pump while I’m in there.
I can get a box-end wrench on it (there’s not much space, so even my 1/4"-drive socket won’t fit), and slip a pipe over it to get leverage, but the problem I’m sure you’ve all encountered is that the pulley turns instead of the bolt! I’ve gotten my roommate to hold a breaker bar on the crankshaft pulley so that the serpentine belt doesn’t move, but there’s not enough friction to stop the pulley moving underneath the belt.
I was wondering if you guys had any time-tested advice for getting the damn things off. I’ve loosened two but the other two are stuck, and a soaking in WD-40 hasn’t helped (though it probably has helped the pulley slip on the belt). I’m replacing the serpentine belt anyway so I don’t mind damaging it if necessary. I’m starting to round out the bolts now, so I figured I’d ask you guys before I do too much damage and need a professional.