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Water Pump for 1996 Toyota Corolla - When Should it be Replaced

I brought my 1996 Toyota Corolla to the dealer for maintenance service (asked for CAD$129.95) and replacing the timing belt (asked for CAD$335.95) this morning, and I prepared have to pay approximately $500 when I get my car back. However, the Service Manager called and advised that the water pump of my car needs to be replaced too because of the leak. He told me the parts will cost me around CAD$100 and will charge me 3 hours for labour. I asked why I need to pay 3 hours for labour because the technician had already raised the hood for replacing the timing belt.

I would appreciate very much if anyone could tell me whether it is reasonable to charge me 3 hours for labour cost for replacing the water pump in this scenario, and please also tell me what is the indicator that it is time to change the water pump.

Thank you in advance for your opinion.

Assuming you have a timing belt, your owner’s manual should indicate the recommended replacement interval. I suggest that for most cars, the water pump is replaced with the timing belt because so much of the labor is the same for both.

Now, the real question Why are you having a dealer do the work?   There are many independent shops that have fully qualified mechanics and they generally charge less for the work.  I suggest that you ask your friends, neighbors and/or co-workers who they use for their automotive work.

If this is the originall water pump it should be replaced with the timing belt even if it were not leaking. I’d repace the tensioner too.

IMHO the additional 3 hours labor is too much. He’s probably going by the standard, which indicates three hours to replace a water pump, but that’s assuming the mechanic isn;t already replacing the timing belt. Honestly, whether a shop charges this way or not depends on the shop.

I don’t believe the water pump on this car is driven by the timing belt, so the labor is not necessarily the same.

However, if they knew the water pump was leaking they should have replaced it while they had everything else apart for the timing belt.

I’d negotiate the labor before paying the bill. Otherwise you’re paying at least part of the labor twice.

TOTAL RIPOFF…That water pump is driven by the T-belt…and should be replaced at T-belt time…what they did is try to itemize this item into the T-belt job…which is WRONG… It should all have been part of the orig job.

I don’t know anything about your particular car but I have been pricing timing belt replacement for my civic and every quote I have received included the water pump s part of the same service. Quotes have ranged from $300-700.

FYI…water pump is not t-belt driven on either of the engines in a 96 Corolla.

Mr. Meehan,

Thank you very much for your reply.

Does it mean the dealer should not charge me 3 hours for labour to replace the water pump because they had already charged me $335.95 (suppose it includes the labour cost in it) for replacing the timing belt.

Regarding why I bring my car to the dealer, 1) I guess the work they perform should be reliable; 2) I am new in this city and have not established a lot of friends/neighbors yet; 3) I have no idea which independent shop in this city is good or reliable; and 4) this is the only one Toyota dealer in this city.

I appreciate very much for your comments, I will take your approach after I established more friends in future.

Thank you very much for all of you (see below) who taking the time to reply my post.

  1. the same mountainbike
  2. mcparadise
  3. Honda Blackbird
  4. asemaster
  5. tulaniq

I appreciate it very much.

I looked up the pump real quick on ebay…maybe they posted the wrong pics of the pump. They showed several T-belt driven pumps as pics…Maybe it isnt…if NOT…then I still think it holds water not to charge another 300…no

If so…same thing

Now I have to look up the pump the real way…damnit

You are correct it is NOT driven by the T-belt… But like I said…they are already in there and the pump is a few actions away from being replaced I STILL dont think it warrants another 300 by any measure.

Honda Blackbird,

Thank you very much for your effort to search ebay and your comment regarding the dealer asked for 3-hour labour charge on top of the original job.