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How to replace the water pump.


New Member
Port Elziabeth, South Africa
Replacing the water pump on my 1969 850cc Renault 4 Fourgonette (two door van). Done in May 1996 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa

  1. Purchase replacement water pump from French or German suppliers. There is only one which fits most models.
  2. Remove bonnet (hood) for easier access to radiator etc
  3. Drain coolant (keep for possible reuse if still fairly new) by removing lowest hose connected to the bottom of the radiator
  4. Detach all radiator and heater hoses
  5. Remove radiator: disconnect the gear lever in the centre before removing the two bolts on the top holding the radiator shroud as well as the strap. The gear lever can now be removed from the gearbox vertical lever. The next job is a little difficult as there are two 13mm nuts under the radiator where it bolts on to the steering rack and pinion box. Feel with your fingers and then use a 13mm socket to release them. The radiator plastic shroud may snag the fan as it comes out so be careful not to force it.
  6. Release the alternator (or generator in older cars) as well as the idler pulley tensioning the water pump fan belt. PLEASE NOTE THAT THE IDLER PULLEY BOLT HAS A REVERSE THREAD i.e. clockwise to loosen and anti-clockwise to tighten.
  7. Remove the fan by releasing the 4 bolts (5 on older water pumps) and you can now easily remove the outer fan belt
  8. Removed the inner fan belt. You can now access the water pump easily from the front
  9. Remove the five bolts holding the water pump in place remembering their order as they comprise three lengths and need to be replaced in the correct position. The water pump can now be removed and the block surface cleaned.
  10. Fitting the new pump is quite easy. Remember to use a new gasket and place the five bolts in their correct positions. ALSO REMEMBER THAT THE IDLER PULLY BOLT HAS A REVERSE THREAD. Your new water pump may have a blank shaft at the front i.e. has no threaded hole. This is not a problem and you can discard the old centre bolt.


Thanks for the tip Andyrad. I'm pretty sure you have the only R4 in Port Elizabeth:). I lived most of my life in Cape Town and never saw one!!