I tend to agree. I've seen belt-driven water pumps fail and take out the fan, shroud and very expensive radiator. The main thing with gear-driven water pumps is to simply check the oil every day, which you should be done anyway, regardless of what type of water pump is on the engine. It doesn't take much coolant to turn oil milky, and if you're keeping track of your oil and coolant levels daily, you should notice a leaking water pump before it becomes a major issue, along with keeping the weep hole open. And of course cooling system maintenance is a big part of it. The pumps last a lot longer with good coolant in the system than with junk coolant that has lost all of its additives. To many guys think that as long as the freeze point is low, the coolant is good. More to it than that. If I had a Deere with a gear-driven water pump, I'd just make it a habit to rebuild the water pump every 2000 hours or so and change the coolant, thermostat and radiator cap at the same time.
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