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Discussion Starter #1
Hey, all, nothing like a vigorous discussion of part numbers to get the ol' juices flowing. This is related to another thread that I began last week, but I thought I'd launch a new topic here because it's more straightforward.

The question: if I want to buy an OEM Mopar water pump for my 2002 Intrepid w/ 2.7 engine, what's the correct part number?

First, some background to doublecheck. Other posts on this forum and elsewhere seem to indicate:
--the original-style water pump has approx 24 teeth on the sprockets and uses a metal gasket w/ polymer inserts.
--an uprated replacement pump has approx 35 teeth, requiring different chains and related hardware. It uses a flat gasket w/ some kind of coating.
--the new gasket is thinner than the old gasket, so the new-style pump is slightly thicker by the same amount (so that all the chain sprockets continue to line up properly.)

Some of the offerings, as of Dec. 11:
--Mopar 4892225AA (approx $58 plus shipping at Rock Auto). Closeup photo shows approx 24 teeth on sprockets. Photo doesn’t show gasket (though it’s included). If looking for gaskets, Rock sells only the old-style, including a Mopar brand.
--eBay seller has Mopar 46761KQ, for $75 including shipping. fitment notes say it’s two narrow sprockets, appears to be approx 24 teeth. Comes w/ newer “full” gasket. Parts Geek lists same Mopar 46761KQ for 1998-2004 Intrepids w/ the 2.7 engine. Fitment notes say “w/ Single Board Engine Controller (SBEC) (2 Connectors) (Water Pump Drive Gear is two narrow sprocket design.)” Sprocket count appears to be approx 24 teeth, BUT the pump comes w/ new-style full gasket. Note that this seems to contradict my introductory note about the old-style pump requiring the thicker old-style washer. WTF?]
--Moparwholesaleparts.com lists 4663732AD for approx $80 (plus shipping)? No fitment notes. Says it replaces 4663732, 4663732AC . Another Mopar parts site lists same number, shows old-style gasket.
Cross-searching for that part number leads to:
--Gates 42041, w/ metal gasket, (approx $41 plus shipping from Rock Auto). No fitment notes. The Gates site for the pump also lists Alternate/OEM Part Number(s): 4663732, 4663732AB, 4663732AC, 4663732AD, 4663736, 511864, 557161, RCWP7161

Also noted:
--ITM (never heard of it) lists 287161 for approx $33 plus shipping at Rock Auto. Its pic shows the pump w/ both old-style metal gasket w/ insert and full-size gasket. Both can’t be right because the gaskets are different thicknesses.

The water pump on my car is almost certainly the old-style pump. I’m not planning on replacing the chains or anything else (car has barely over 100k miles), so I need to buy the old-style pump and gasket. But if I want an OEM Mopar part, which part number?

Frankly, I’m leaning toward buying the Gates – slightly cheaper, but mostly because I’m not sure which Mopar part number to use.

As always, comments appreciated.
 

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• Yes this subject is confusing ("Who's on first?")

• As far as the ITM part showing two different gaskets, I remarked in your other thread that my guess is that they ship you either the thin (new-type) gasket with thicker-bodied pump *or* thick gasket and old pump depending on which one they have in stock at the moment - that's my theory. Besides the problem of sprocket being out of plane with the chain if you put thick gasket with thick pump or thin gasket with thin pump, the other problem is that the timing cover will be seriously and permanently warped and will not seal the timing compartment - you'll have oil all over the place, and would have to replace the timing cover to fix that.

• Other than that last bullet, I refuse to discuss the aftermarket pumps because there is generally poor or inconsistent quality, and you don't know what mix you're going to get from one week to the next from the same "manufacturer". The fact that thin pumps with the thick gasket are common in aftermarket and you can't predict which you are going to get from a given "manufacturer" when you place your order regardless of what picture they show tells me to stay away from aftermarket on this part.

• Be careful not to equate the term "new pump" to mean both thicker, beefed-up pump *and* finer-tooth sprocket. Fine-tooth sprocket only relates to post-LH platform timing chain. Thick gasket always has to go with thin pump, thin gasket always has to go with thick pump. But you can have fine tooth sprocket (for new design chain) with either design pump/gasket set. I may have contributed to some of that confusion in some of my older posts before I realized that all permutations of fine-tooth/coarse-tooth sprocket and thick/thin pumps have showed up on the market.

• Regarding this in your post:
Parts Geek lists same Mopar 46761KQ for 1998-2004 Intrepids w/ the 2.7 engine. Fitment notes say “w/ Single Board Engine Controller (SBEC) (2 Connectors) (Water Pump Drive Gear is two narrow sprocket design.)”
SBEC was for 1998 thru 2001; 2002 thru 2004 was NGC, so the Parts Geek notes about SBEC and NGC relating to the water pump is absolute nonsense. Chain and cam sprockets set SBEC vs. NGC important - yes. Water pump - absolutely not. Again, stay away from aftermarket on the 2.7 water pump and timing parts.

• My overall advice is to get with a competent dealer parts guy and give him your VIN. There are enough notes in the Chrysler parts system to tell him what part number you need to order depending purely on if you are going with the fine-tooth post-LH platform chain or staying with the original chain. Chrysler does not sell the old-design pump and thick gasket anymore. It would surprise me somewhat if Rock Auto is selling new-old-stock old design pumps, but it is certainly possible. Can you trust the photos showing whether fine-pitch or coarse-pitch sprocket? I don't know. Another reason to buy from a dealer - or at least get the part numbers from the dealer. IMO . . .

Perhaps someone here knows the right part number for the new-design pump and thin gasket with the old-design (coarse-pitch) chain sprocket you want and will post it, or perhaps it has been posted before.
 

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Woober Goobers!
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Quit being a cheap Bass-Turd and go to the dealer and get the correct part from Chrysler. This is the ONLY way to go for the 2.7. Considering the amount of labor involved with a 2.7 water pump replacement why risk saving $20 on a cheap crappy pump? Experienced people with plenty of collective knowledge on the subject have told you the best path yet you continue with the "Cheap-Ass Penny Pinching BS". Do it right and you won't have to redo the whole job or ruin the engine.

The 3.2/3.5 don't have the issues with the water pump and the Gates kits for those engines have been fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I plead guilty to being a cheap Bass-Turd, but I'm planning to buy the Mopar pump. I'd just like to pay a little less for it.

I'll probably go w/ Rock Auto because if it's the wrong one, they'll take it back without any arguments.

Thanks again, Peva, for your helpful information.
 

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Woober Goobers!
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I believe Peva was telling you to go to the Dealer with your VIN and have them determine the correct part number(s). From there you can use those part numbers to do an Internet search to possibly find a lower price.

Some things you don't seem to realize is that with online dealers and RockAuto you be paying for shipping and Tax. If you can get your local dealer to price match the online price then you save the shipping charges which seem to be inflated with the online dealers if the price of the part is under $100. Just looking at the part price on RockAuto doesn't give you an accurate total price. Go to checkout and see what the "Real" cost will be and you'll most likely find the Dealer is the best/lowest overall cost on the part(s).

I've given up on RA because of their inflated shipping costs and having to collect tax for OEM items under $100.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I'm well aware of Rock Auto's high shipping rates (they want something like $8 to ship a 3-ounce PCV valve). I think they'd be better off raising their prices a bit and reducing shipping charges, to reduce the sticker shock when the total cost is computed. But even w/ high shipping costs, they're almost always less expensive than the other auto parts sources (not including eBay, which I always doublecheck).

Ronbo's suggestion about calling a local dealer's parts department and checking out their price for an OEM water pump reminded me that there are places in America where capable employees in sales/service positions do exist and try to be helpful. Unfortunately, I don't live in one of them. Here in northern Virginia/Washington DC suburbs, the typical worker in those categories is overworked, underpaid and uninformed.

My local Chrysler dealer is only a few miles away, though depending on traffic, it might take me 20 minutes to get there. I didn't call the parts department because I'd probably get put on hold, then encounter a parts guy who might or might not be willing to dig a little deeper to answer my question, and might or might not have time to do it. (And even then, if he's lazy or doesn't know what he's doing, the answer could STILL be wrong.) And if they did have the part, I'd probably have to stand in line for 10-15 minutes at the counter to get it.

Also, the odds of negotiating a lower price locally would be slim and none. In my experience, auto parts departments view inquiries from Joe Caller as unnecessary inconveniences. They make their money selling parts to service departments, including their own. The local Chrysler dealer, for example, asks you to fill out and submit an electronic form if you want information about a part (including the price). Does that sound like he wants my business, knowing full well there are lots of discount parts suppliers out there with online catalogs?

Sorry if this sounds like a rant. But around here, and I suspect in most larger urban areas, the same situation applies. In my neighborhood's social media group, there are many stories about botched repairs, or truly ripoff service prices, for their cars. One reason I do all my own work (I own 7 cars, my Intrepid being the newest) is because I have reasonable confidence that it'll be done right.

Anyway, I've ordered the Mopar water pump from Rock Auto, and it's already been shipped (that is, if I believe their email). When the part arrives, I'll share the results.

PS: I've been registered on this site for three years and made more than 50 posts. When do I stop being a newbie?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Update: I can confirm that the Mopar water pump sold by Rock Auto, 4892225AA , is correct for my 2002 Intrepid w/ 2.7 engine and original timing chain (not new improved version). The new pump has a thicker body to compensate for the thinner (but better) gasket.
Interestingly, when I finally got the old pump out, the leak was coming from where the gasket had failed in 2-3 places. Quite possible the pump bearings weren't leaking at all ... but of course after doing all the work to get to the ^(^*$#! pump, it's a no-brainer to replace the whole thing.
 
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