Auto Maintenance:

How to Remove an Air Pump 

My wife and I are the only two drivers in our household, although we own four cars. Two of them are my long-term project cars and I was told I could not buy another vehicle until I completed one. Last year, just before Christmas, I was driving home with my two sons after finishing up last- minute shopping. I decided to stop and inquire about an ‘87 Dodge pickup truck (photo below) that had been sitting for several years. The gentleman kindly gave me the truck for free. His wife, as you can imagine, was very happy to have the truck out of their driveway. My wife, however, was not thrilled with the new addition to the family, but she recognized that she had left a loophole in the rules. (I did not “buy” it.)


Now the question…where to begin? Where else? The drive train. The truck is almost 27 years old and a victim of the economy. It came with a small block V8 (318 or 5.2 Liter) and a 904 automatic transmission. After three weeks of cleaning the undercarriage, two coats of Loctite® Extend® Rust Neutralizer and a coat of frame paint, I started under the hood. In some states it’s legal to remove the pollution pump (or air pump) after a vehicle is 25 years old. This pumps fresh air into the exhaust and, contrary to belief at the time of its installation, doesn’t do anything for emissions. Removing the useless pump helps to lighten the weight of the vehicle and eliminates a horsepower draw. This particular truck also had a lean burn ignition system in it, so I switched that over to vacuum advance at the same time. When I get a chance, I’ll post the details on this change-over as well.

The pollution pump was removed by disconnecting two hoses and unbolting it from the block. I read on a couple of sites about some folks changing bolt lengths after removing the pump in order for the throttle return spring bracket and/or power steering pump bolts to tighten back up correctly, but that was not the case on my truck. Most folks cut the stainless tubes off near the firewall and either crimped or welded them. Know alsoabout air pump for car here.

The driver’s air pump tube flange, where it attached to the exhaust manifold, unbolted easily from the top of the engine compartment, and the passenger side came out with little trouble from underneath the truck with a long arm reach. After they were disconnected, I fished them out from the top. I then cut them off flush with the flanges and welded them shut.

I also removed the two barrel intake and carburetor, replacing it with an aluminum intake and four barrel carburetor I purchased used. If you are going to do this, there is one more tube, which runs from the passenger side exhaust manifold up to the intake, which you will need to remove and plug.