So after 130k miles on my lightning I noticed my Intercooler Pump (IC Pump) was no longer pumping… With the hot Texas summers it was easy to notice a significant loss in power due to the high Air Intake Temperatures (IATs). Some people have located new pumps for approx $100. But why spend $100 when you can spend $15 and an hour of your time and have your pump working like new again?
Well here I will tell you how I did it. There was someone out there who was smart enough to find some carbon brushes that can be retro-fitted to work in our IC Pumps. These brushes are 95% of the time the cause to your IC Pump dieing. Sometimes a cleaning of the pumps internals is all that’s required, but if you’re in there and notice your brushes to be low on carbon then it’s time to change them!
Here is where I purchased the new brushes! Makita CB-407 Brushes
The part number you are looking for is CB-407 (made by Makita) and I bought 2 sets in case I wrecked one. Shipping took 1 week to Texas. So lets get started!
- If your truck is not lowered you don’t even need to jack it up off the ground!
- Locate the IC pump, if you look under your front bump and up on the drivers side you will see the pump with 2 lines connected to it (these lines go to the IC Pump reservoir)
- Remove the 2 lines (be sure to have a clean catch can for the fluid (chances are you can re-use it)
- Remove the electrical connector
- There will be 2 bolts holding the IC Pump bracket in place, loosen and remove the pump!
- Make sure to drain out any remaining fluid.
- Using some needle nose pliers, pry back the retaining clips on the top of the pump
- Carefully pry the pump apart to expose the internals (you will now notice lots of carbon deposits) tap gently to clean it out!
- You will now see where the brushes are/were and might just have the bare wires to the coils.
- Take your new brushes (you will notice they have a “coil spring” on them… You will want to gently cut the end off so you can remove the spring but keep as much of the electrical lead as possible! (you will need to solder this to the coil wires)
- Use a piece of 220 grit or similar sand paper and sand your new carbon brushes down CAREFULLY! You want them to slide into the housing and be able to fit snugly but still be able to slide freely! (if you wreck one then its a good thing you bought a second set right!?)
- Solder the leads of the brushes onto the coils and check to make sure the brushes are spring loading correctly (moving freely in their housings)
- Now is the tricky part! You need to hold the brushes back to be able to get the shaft of the motor between them when you put the motor back together! Some people use a small string and tie them back… But I managed to put the housing back on sideways to start and get one brush over the shaft then I took a very small screw driver and pushes the other brush back while pushing the housing back together! (be creative here, patience is key)
- Assemble the pump back together and try putting 12v on the leads to see if your pump works! With a bit of luck you’re in business!
- Installation is reverse of removal.
I hope this helps some of you save a few bucks!
Some pictures as reference: