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Water Pump - Springs In Discharge?


Farmall Cub
I’m replacing the water pump in my ‘74 Scout II (345 V8). I got the water pump free of the housing and put a finger inside the discharge pipe to the radiator (the large, lower one). I fished out three light gauge wire springs (possibly used to be a single spring that has fallen apart) that are badly rusted and brittle.

Any ideas what these are? What would this be from or for? Is it possible it travelled through the coolant system and got lodged here?


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Dreams of Cub Cadets
That spring is from the lower radiator hose, it NEEDS! to be in there, at high engine RPM's the water pump WILL suck the lower hose flat and the engine can over heat!, new hoses usually come with them.


Farmall Cub
Thanks much. Just to make sure I understand, do you mean the thick rubber hose (connected to the radiator) or the metal pipe (connected to the water pump housing)?

Either way, I guess I need to buy a new one, since this is rusted out?

Thanks again.

Mark Pietz

High Wheeler
You need that spring. Under certain "high suction" conditions that hose can collapse - that's why they put them there in the first place. And the lower hose isn't a discharge, it's an intake hose into the water pump. The outlet from the water pump are the metal pipe(s) that goes to the head(s). Anyway, I digress. I found a suitable spring that was used in "classic" Ford Mustangs; I am certain other non-IH vehicles used something comparable.


Farmall Cub
Thanks Mark. I’m still learning the ropes under the hood (as you can tell). I never knew something as “basic” as a hose could be so complex. Fascinating stuff.

I appreciate everyone’s input on this forum. Really helps folks like me who are beginners.

jeff campbell

Staff member
You DO if you cant find 1 then twist your own. Not needed to be perfect.just need support inside. Its not rocket science.


Binder Driver
Lower radiator hose collapse happens when radiator is partially plugged impeding flow of coolant. As stated above, pump pulls coolant from radiator via lower hose placing it under a vacuum. Some hoses come with internal spring, and some don't more often than not these days. A clean free flowing cooling system probably wouldn't need that internal spring. Also when radiator hoses get old they loose structural integrity become soft, mushy, swelling near clamps and easily deformed under a vacuum all signs that hose needs to be changed.


Farmall Cub
I recently flushed my engine and I just stuck a hose in the top after removing the thermostat and allowed water to come out both sides of the block where the hard pipes go. Lots of nasty crud came out!


High Wheeler
I’ve wondered if maybe a couple of gallons of white vinegar run through the system would safely clean up some of the rust.

Erik Morton

High Wheeler
To answer your question above, I have heard you can only do a superficial job until your freeze plugs are out. I have done the superficial job a couple of times. My engine is due for the freeze plug swap/deep flush.


Lives in an IH Dealership
I've been super impressed with the job Evaporust does on rusty parts submerged in it. It's not an acid, so won't harm metal. If you could just fill up the engine block water jacket, with it and let it soak overnight, I bet it would have a dramatic effect. Stuff has to be used full strength and it's spendy, but it separates rust from metal like gangbusters.

Dana Strong

Lives in an IH Dealership
I have used lots of Oxalic acid, an organic chemical with two acid groups (-COOH) compared to one on vinegar, for dissolving rust. I haven't tried it inside an engine, and would bypass the radiator (both brass and aluminum) and heater core if I were to do so, even though normally it shouldn't react with them. I get it free, mostly as products originally sold as wood bleach, from the Toxic Waste Warehouse I've mentioned before. Here's one ad on EBay for a reasonable amount at a decent price; smaller quantities can be found in local 'box' stores, but usually at much greater price per pound.
Another organic, citric acid (which is edible), is used in places like water heaters (where toxicity would be a problem) to dissolve scale. I think its activity is a bit less, but being so widely produced, its price can be very low. Not sure how well it attacks the hard oxide left from aluminum anodes; magnesium anodes leave a loose floculant deposit that can be easily washed out.
Scoutboy I'n not familiar with Evaporust so I google it to learn more. Turns out that company also makes a product specifically designed for flushing engines- might be worth a try:
That's the diammonium salt of phosphoric acid. The use of plain phosphoric acid for cleaning steel parts has been discussed here at length.
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