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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm in the process of replacing my old water pump with a new Gates water pump, but I have a problem. All six of the bolts that hold it down won't tighten. A ratchet or torque wrench won't tighten them, nor will my fingers. The bolts aren't new, but they don't appear to be stripped or damaged. I don't really know what to do, or if something is damaged. Anybody have a similar problem before?

The car is a 2005 WRX: about 240k miles, engine rebuilt around 2 years ago.
Parts: New Gates water pump, and six OEM water pump bolts. New water pump gasket.

Thanks for the help
 

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What do you mean won't tighten? Like won't go to the bottom, or just spin freely?

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If the threads are salvageable you can chase them. If the threads are stripped I foresee a coil kit in your future.
 

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The bolts will just spin freely, sorry I didn't clarify
It sounds like you ripped the threads out of the block. You may have to do a thread repair with a helicoil.

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
It sounds like you ripped the threads out of the block. You may have to do a thread repair with a helicoil.

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How does something like this happen, especially with all six bolts? And how can I avoid doing it again haha
 

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Using a good penetrating fluid. I'm really skeptical of my diagnosis, but it certainly sounds that way based off of your description. Aluminum and steel tends to gall up. With a Popeye forearm and a giant ratchet it's nothing to tear the aluminum out

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Just a silly thought: Are we 100% the bolts aren't too small for the holes? Sorry I had to bring it up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
UPDATE: I went and bought a 6mm-1.0 Tap and tap wrench, some PB Blaster, and Thread Lock. I have a good feeling about this.
 

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XJ was saying use penetrating fluid to get the bolts out (to avoid stripping); not when you are trying to install.

You still have not told us if they thread in with no pump there. And I am still not sure if you mean they just spin at the hole openings or if you can insert them into the holes and they continue to spin once bottomed out.

And if the hole threads are indeed stripped, using the same size tap will do no good. It will be helicoil time at that point.
 

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It's easy to pull the threads out of a 1mm pitch thread. I'm hoping it isn't what happened.

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
XJ was saying use penetrating fluid to get the bolts out (to avoid stripping); not when you are trying to install.

You still have not told us if they thread in with no pump there. And I am still not sure if you mean they just spin at the hole openings or if you can insert them into the holes and they continue to spin once bottomed out.

And if the hole threads are indeed stripped, using the same size tap will do no good. It will be helicoil time at that point.
I can insert the bolts in and start tightening them, but they never become tight and keep spinning.
 

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That means the threads are stripped out of the block. Your options are helicoil or threadsert

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I'm still struggling to accept all the threads (all the bolt holes) are stripped. I've replaced a water pump, that's s lot of bolts to strip simultaneously.
 

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Yes, hard steel/SS in aluminum works great every time :fuu:

this is a struggle in my line of work, with your kit you should be good, take your time
 
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