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Water Pump Bolt Issue

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While installing my new water pump this evening I discovered that the bottom most hole (shown in pic) is stripped. My only peace of mind is I didn't strip it. Looks like the person I bought it from did it. My first indicator should have been the washers on the bolt that came out.

So what are my options? The motor is in the car but luckily it's the bottom most bolt and I have fairly decent access.
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1997 Outback, 2016 Forester, 2022 Outback
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I'm thinking one of these bad Larry's may be the answer. I just have to hold it in place enough to tighten. View attachment 554254
Sure, that'd work. Just grind/file a pair of small flats on one, and use a small adjustable wrench on it.
Brian, I looked. Spec is 7ft.lb.
(edit to add) Yes; a correctly installed Helicoil would be best. Laying on your back and doing a good job are, IMO, mutually exclusive. F__k it up and you're worse off than when you started. I wish I could say I have never done that. A thru bolt will serve in this application, and there is no reason why it should make future service more difficult unless you forget the nut is there and waste time trying to get the screw back out w/o holding it. Use stainless steel hardware if you are concerned about corrosion.
And let's not forget: this is a 20yo car. The new water pump will almost undoubtedly outlive someotherthing . . . :-D.
 

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2003 Outback wagon
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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
The worst part is, we had the motor out to replace the head gaskets and I told my friend who's more mechanically inclined that we should find a fix before putting the motor back in and timing it. He said don't worry we can find a fix. Now I think he put us in a pickle.
 

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I was "down under" Shira today😁 and saw your conundrum in full relevant detail.
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Please don't mind the grime. She has her leaks like all of our almost 20 year olds do.
It is a possibility a nut won't fit on the back. It's close. I would shave a side off of a nut with a grinder, considering its application, if I couldn't reach it to re-tap or coil it right until the next time I pull it.
As you can see, I'm getting close to having to pull mine for a rebuild. With 125k, I guess in another 10 to 20 years by what I gather from others experiences, and how I driver her🌠🌈🍀
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
I was "down under" Shira today😁 and saw your conundrum in full relevant detail.
View attachment 554520
View attachment 554518
Please don't mind the grime. She has her leaks like all of our almost 20 year olds do.
It is a possibility a nut won't fit on the back. It's close. I would shave a side off of a nut with a grinder, considering its application, if I couldn't reach it to re-tap or coil it right until the next time I pull it.
As you can see, I'm getting close to having to pull mine for a rebuild. With 125k, I guess in another 10 to 20 years by what I gather from others experiences, and how I driver her🌠🌈🍀
You made my day with those pics my friend!! I've been thinking about that area all week and due to the car being at my friends, I don't have access to look at that area. I ordered a few things from a place out of Massachusetts. Here's what I'm going to try...

I'm hoping one of these, with a little shave and a haircut will sit in there and let me thread into her. Fingers crossed!! Again, thank you so much for those pictures!!
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2008 OB Limited 2.5i, Portland OR USA
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I will warn that the thread is very likely going to be different, so bring bolts that match when you try them.
It used to be that anything out of the ordinary for a fastener had to be a standard UNC or UNF thread. Now you can get almost anything in a metric thread that you can get in a standard thread.

The difference is that suppliers in Taiwan and China started shipping directly into the USA for Amazon or Ebay. You just have to wait a little longer unless you are paying for a two day delivery - they will put the shipment into the regular postal system.

The last two things I bought for my Taiwan-made woodworking equipment in my shop were done this way; I hate to mix fastener standards on a given piece of equipment.
 

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Personally I do not think that a water pump bolt on a modern vehicle is something that should be “frankenstiened”. The cooling system holds around six quarts of coolant and the loss of around one half a quart can lead to an “over heating event” which can then cause a head gasket breach.

I suspect that if you remove the water pump you will have enough access to install a helicoil or similar and have confidence in the repair for the life of the engine. This should be possible without removing the engine (but I have never helicoiled that water pump bolt with engine in vehicle). I have successfully helicoiled one of the other water pump bolts without removing the engine.

Just my two cents worth.

Seagrass
 

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2008 OB Limited 2.5i, Portland OR USA
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Personally I do not think that a water pump bolt on a modern vehicle is something that should be “frankenstiened”. The cooling system holds around six quarts of coolant and the loss of around one half a quart can lead to an “over heating event” which can then cause a head gasket breach.
I agree, he shouldn't mess with things such as Loctite Form-a-Thread or similar products - there's too much at stake should the bolt pull out.

But if he can get a nut or sleeve in the back of the bolt, there should be absolutely no issue with that arrangement holding things tight.
 
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