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Super Modder
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5,296 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I was under the hood of my car the other day, and noticed some splatter on the front A/C hose and the A/C compressor. A little bit of investigation showed that it was antifreeze, and that there was some in the rear of the water pump pulley as well. No leaks from around the water pump housing, so most likely the front seal on the pump shaft. I happen to have the old engine from my wife's car, and the water pump on it is still good, so I will be installing that one.

Parts Needed
-Water pump
-Antifreeze (2 gal total, 50/50 with water)

Tools Needed
-Jack
-Pair of jack stands
-5mm hex key
-Flat blade screwdriver
-Phillips screwdriver
-14mm straight wrench (non offset/bent)
-3/8 Ratchet with 10 & 12mm sockets/extensions
-12mm nut driver
-Drain pan
-Funnel (Lisle P/N 24610)

Jacking up vehicle
-Jack up the front of the Altima and put it on jack stands
-I use the center of the subframe from the front of the car. This spot is located in the middle of the lower engine cover. Look right under the center of the license plate, and you will find it.

-Jack stands are at the front of the frame rails

-Remove passenger side front wheel(loosen lug nuts before raising vehicle if removing without air tools)

Draining Coolant System
-Make sure vehicle is completely cooled down
-Use Phillips screwdriver to remove radiator drain plug. It can be found through this hole on the lower engine cover more towards the passenger side of car. Use drain pan to catch old coolant.

-Remove radiator cap

-Let system drain until it stops dripping

Making Room
-Remove engine side cover inside of passenger wheel well
-Remove the 4 clips with a flat blade screwdriver

Remove engine cover, 4-5mm hex head bolts

-Remove window washer fluid filler tube (pull up and twist out)
-Remove coolant overflow bottle, 2-10mm bolts. Place bottle with hose still attached on top of motor

-Relocate fuse block on passenger side...
-Remove 10mm nut, and use screw driver to unclip on rear side
-Once loose, pull up off of bracket and rotate towards fender

-Remove bracket for fuse block, 2-12mm bolts
 

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Super Modder
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5,296 Posts
Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Continued from above...

Loosening Serpentine Belt Tensioner
-Locate the serpentine belt tensioner...It is located directly underneath the alternator, and is visible from the top or bottom. The bolt in the center of it is a 14mm and is the one used to release the tension on the tensioner.
-From bottom through wheel well

-Top view with 14mm wrench installed on tensioner nut. I have another wrench looped over the 14mm open end for more leverage

-Locate locking holes for tensioner, under alternator

-Pull tensioner assembly towards front of car while installing a suitable pin into the tensioner locking holes...I used a round shank screw driver

-With the tensioner locked, you can peel the belt off of the alternator pulley.

If you happen to just be replacing the belt, remove the old belt(PAY ATTENTION TO ROUTING!!!), and then reverse the disassembly sequence.

If replacing the tensioner assembly, remove the old and install new and then reinstall belt.

Note; you obviously do not need to drain the radiator to change the belt/and or tensioner

Remove/Replace Water pump
-Remove 3-12mm bolts attching water pump

-The 2 towards the front of the car are easy...The other one between the water pump and engine is tight to get to. I broke it loose with a wrench and then used a nut driver through the pulley to loosen it.

-Clean mating surface on engine and install new water pump with gasket...No sealer or silicone should be needed.

At this point, reinstall belt, and put everything else back together. Also install the radiator drain plug.

Properly Filling Coolant System
For refilling the Altima, I use a Lisle funnel, p/n 24610. If used correctly, any problems with air pockets in the system are completely avoided. BEST RESULTS ARE OBTAINED WITH THE FRONT OF THE VEHICLE RAISED. This also happens to be the way that Nissan recommends doing this procedure in the TSB referring to poor heater performance.

-Install correct adapter for Lisle funnel on radiator
-Install funnel on top of adapter
-Fill radiator with 50/50 mixture of antifreeze and water...Continue filling until funnel is app 1/2 full and is not draining into radiator anymore

-Start vehicle and let warm up to operating temperature
-Check coolant level in funnel to make sure it is still app 1/2 full...Fill as needed.
-Squeeze radiator hoses occasionally to help remove air from system.
-Once car has reached operating temperature, turn on heater to full 'on'
-Feel for heat coming out through the under dash vents
-Rev engine, squeeze hoses, check level in funnel.
-If coolant in funnel is bubbling, that is GOOD sign, but may not always happen
-When heater continues to blow warm air in idle, the system is bled of all the air pockets.
-KEEP VEHICLE RUNNING!!!
-Use plunger stick to plug funnel (push it down into the center)

-Remove funnel from adapter
-Remove adapter and replace radiator cap
-Fill radiator overflow bottle with coolant left in funnel to the 'Min' line
-Stop vehicle and finish reassembly.
-Take vehicle for a test drive and check for any leaks.

Beer time!!!:)

A note...
I have in my tool arsenal a full set of GearWrenches, and they come in quite handy for working in tight spaces. I also have a set of inserts/sockets that fit into the GearWrenches that I found at Sears. These allow the wrench to become a very low profile socket...
 

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FERRARI SLAYER
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973 Posts
nice write up...i'll probly end up usin this eventually....thats one less thing i have to pay a dumbass shop to do... :p
 

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Registered
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38 Posts
Very well written and crystal clear pictures, awesome work!

I did a coolant fluid change this afternoon in my garage, the owners manual states that 2005 Altima 2.5 takes 8.2L of 50/50 mixture of water and straight antifreeze. However, when refilling the coolant i noticed it takes a lot less then 8.2L. Anyone know why?
 

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Super Modder
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5,296 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Very well written and crystal clear pictures, awesome work!

I did a coolant fluid change this afternoon in my garage, the owners manual states that 2005 Altima 2.5 takes 8.2L of 50/50 mixture of water and straight antifreeze. However, when refilling the coolant i noticed it takes a lot less then 8.2L. Anyone know why?
Because you cannot completely empty the system by draining the radiator. You still have coolant in the block and the heater core.
 

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Registered
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38 Posts
Because you cannot completely empty the system by draining the radiator. You still have coolant in the block and the heater core.
Then how do i get all the old coolant out? My goal is completely drain the system and resupply with fresh new coolant all while making sure no air gets trapped in the system. Please advise!
 

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Super Modder
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5,296 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Then how do i get all the old coolant out? My goal is completely drain the system and resupply with fresh new coolant all while making sure no air gets trapped in the system. Please advise!
The only way to completely exchange all of the coolant in the system would be to use one of the tools that shops have that pulls a vacuum on the system to drain it.

Typically, you should get 1-1.25 gallons from just draining the radiator. If this is done on a fairly regular basis as a preventive maintenance procedure, the coolant will be fine.
 
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