Water Pump Replacement in a Chrysler 2.7L Engine

I recently helped my sister-in-law by replacing the leaking water pump in her 1998 Dodge Intrepid with the 2.7L engine. It’s a terribly designed engine in that when the water pump shaft seal goes (as they are prone to do), the leak dumps coolant into the crankcase and fouls the oil. Chrysler seams to think that a simple weep hole is sufficient to catch any leakage and dump it outside, but, I’ve read too many stories about that being inadequate. BTW — the weep hole location is on the left side of the engine block, near the front, about half way up the block. It’s easiest to locate when looking from underneath the car.

The following is not meant to be a complete step-by-step on how to do the job. I intend it to be informational with things that I learned along the way that might help others. I would not attempt this without some kind of service manual(s). I have omitted many important details that are covered in a service manual (like torque procedures). If nothing else, after reading this you should get a good sense for the amount of work involved and why a mechanic is going to charge you north of $500 in labor to do the job.
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