Your air pump plays an important role in your vehicle's exhaust system by providing oxygen, which will allow unburned fuels to ignite, thus preventing a build-up of hydrocarbons and giving you cleaner emissions. In time, your air pump may experience enough wear as to need replacing. Fortunately, with the right tools and mechanical skills, replacing an air pump can be something you can do yourself.
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Here's what you'll need:
- Floor jack
- Jack stands
- Ratchet wrench
- Socket set
- Replacement air pump
- Personal protection equipment (safety gloves, glasses, etc.)
- Vehicle owner manual
- Make sure your vehicle is on a level surface - it might roll or lean when jacked up.
- Never rely on just the floor jack to hold up your vehicle. Be sure your jack stands are properly placed.
- We recommend working after your vehicle's engine has cooled down.
- This is a general guide. Refer to your owner's manual for any specifications. Your air pump may be accessible either from the top through your engine compartment or from underneath your vehicle.
- Place your vehicle in "Park" or "Neutral" before you begin.
And here are the steps:
- Disconnect your battery to prevent any electrical malfunction.
- Use the floor jack to raise your vehicle. Set up the jack stands under the front front frame near each wheel.
- Use your socket and wrench to loosen the bolts on your air pump pulley (without completely removing them).
- If you have a serpentine belt, use your socket and wrench to relieve the pressure on the tensioner pulley by placing the socket on the center tensioner nut and turning clockwise. Keep it there while you slip the belt off the air pump pulley.
- If you have a single-belt configuration, loosen the main air pump mount bolt a little,then loosen the upper adjusting bolt on the pump. Slacken the belt tension by shoving the pump down. You may now slip the single belt off the air pump pulley.
- Use your screwdriver to loosen the clamp on the discharge hose-the one connected to the nozzle outlet of the smog pump. Remove the hose from the nozzle, taking care not to damage it in the process.
- Use your socket and wrench to loosen then remove the upper air pump bolt.
- Completely remove the air pump pulley bolts and take the pulley out.
- Remove the main air pump mounting bolt and pull the pump out from its bracket mount.
- Install the replacement air pump then put everything back together by following the reverse order of disassembly.
The discharge neck (a thin metal nozzle) on your old air pump can be reused with the new one if your replacement kit does not include that component.