Engine Replacing A Heater Core

Discussion in 'Fox 5.0 Mustang Tech' started by Don Fiveolio, Jun 30, 2006.

  1. Agreed, I have done this twice without discharging the A/C. First time took me 9 hours, second took me about 6 and this is working by myself.
  2. anyone pull the entire dash out, what else do you have to disconnect?

  3. SEE, that's what stalled me for 4 months NOT to do my heater core, I knew you could do that without taking off the STEERING COLUMN!?!?!?!?!?!?!? WTF YOU DA MAN, MAN!!:nice: :nice:

    Now you inspired me to pay my 20 bucks and do it LOLOL:hail2:
  4. 5 hours, a lot of cussing and it's done. If it wasn't 92 degrees with 130% humidity, I probably could have gotten it done in 4 hours. If I was to do it again, it would probably be 2-3 hours.

    I have an '88 car with A/C. Let me tell you, I'd REALLY like to smack the engineer that designed the HVAC monstrousity that is behind the dash. What really kills me is that the Chilton's manual shows the directions for non-A/C cars and it's something like, open the glove box, remove the two screws for the heater core access door, remove heater core and replace. :bang:
  5. That manual is referencing the 79-86 cars... wish it was that easy with ours:rolleyes:
  6. Thanks man, saw this thread and decided what the hell. I've been wanting to take the heater out for a while now but didn't feel like guessing my way through it. Took about 2 hours to get it out


    Thanks a lot man, I'm sure you saved me an hour or two

    Attached Files:

  7. Awesome right up man, I immediately added that to my favorites!
  8. This probably has been said but, I removed mine and replaced it in about 2.5 hrs. And I didnt do a few of the things that this person did. Like I didnt remove the glove box, or disconnect ac. I followed the directions in another link a while back. And that was my first time ever doing a heater core or dropping a dash for that matter. But this could prove to be a valuable resource Stangnet FTW...

    and in no way did I do as much work as Tokyo Joe to get mine out :eek:....good job tho!!!
  9. lmao, I was wanting to remove the unit altogether among other things which is why I pulled the entire dash, just so I could get a good look at everything back there. :)
  10. Damm bro mine looks like that now yes im doing my hearter core and this will make day 2 but i am takeing my time and try not to break anything well good luck on your stang and may your heater blow out HOT!!!
  11. Great writeup and notes!

    I've done my 79 about 4 times, and my 89 once. The 89 was easier, (both with ac).

    First time, it took 16 hours.

    Last time was 5 hrs and 33 minutes, for the 89. (But who's counting..)

    Did not discharge the ac on either car.

    Got some buddies that will do it for $400 plus the core.

    If you can do it in under 2 hrs, you should not need any other means of making a living.....
  12. I still have yet to see anyone post a how-to (with pics, would be even better) on how to do an even quicker method of a heater core swap ... one that's as brutal and ghetto as possible, while still being functional. I've seen the pics of someone having cut a hole in their heater box, but I'm wondering 1. WHY, if you've still gotta take everything else out to get to it, and 2. why the poster was so angry at the prior owner for having hacked a square hole in the heater box, if the thing is still perfectly functional and totally out of sight behind the glove box?

    I can see that it's possible to do the core without completely REMOVING the dash or totally dropping the steering column - that's cool, and probably how I'd do it - but if there's a straight-up quickie way to do it without having to disassemble half the interior to do so ... y'know, maybe just drop open the glove box, hack a hole, unhook the hoses, and swap out the core for a new one, then duct-tape the hole shut or something ... then I'd really like to see/hear about it. Reason being, I don't like to half-arse things usually, but between Frankenstang and I, we've got THREE Foxes needing heater core swaps, and I really don't have three weekends (or more) to devote to doing nothing but friggin' heater core swaps ... especially if one of the replacement cores decides to spring a leak or something (which, knowing my luck, would probably happen in at least one out the three cars).
  13. Please forgive my brutalness, but you just answered your own question. If you cut a hole in the box adnd the core leaks later on down the line; Where do you think all of the coolant is going to go? I don't like the smell of wet carpet myself and all of the black in the photos is brand new interior. I'm also very "concourse" when it comes to my cars. I don't like hack jobs and I certainly don't like surprises. Think of it like this; If he withheld that information, what else could heave with held that I should know as a car buyer. And sure enough when I was de-greasing under the hood, I found a huge surprise that still has me steaming. Anyway... You asked.:D
  14. Well, considering that my car has no under-carpet sound insulation and, whenever my sucky budget permits, either a simple old-school rubber "carpet" or just thickly rolled/sprayed bedliner for the floors, the wet carpet smell in the event of core failure issue is sort of a non-issue. Besides, I'm pretty quick to notice the smell of coolant from my car at any point, so I don't wait until I have a complete pool of green in my passenger-side floorboard before I go, "Oh yeah ... guess I'd better change out the heater core." Rather, I'd just keep a bypass loop handy in the trunk (along with my usual "oh crap" tools), and toss that on there in the event of a catastrophically slobbering heater core until I get around to doing it again. :D

    As far as making it look as though I'm "hiding" flaws of the car ... pshaw! My notch shall go nowhere. I've pumped so much money into this beast that I know I'll never even get HALF of it back if I were to sell it, and it's hard enough to find a notch in the first place that I don't want to go through the hassle of hunting down another one in the future to replace this one. I have every intention of driving this thing until it is physically and completely destroyed by some tragic, apocalyptic sort of force (old person, illegal alien, poor traction at the track, moose in road at night, etc.)

    So, really, it doesn't quite answer the question: Is there an even EASIER way (ghetto or otherwise) to swap a heater core out? :shrug:

    Imagine it like, you're in a contest to see just how fast you possibly could change out a heater core (and still have the new one be functional), with beer and hot chicks rewarded to the winner with the shortest time. So ... would it be as simple as dropping the glovebox, reaching in there with a Dremel to cut out a rectangle, swapping out the core, and then taping the cut-out panel back in there? Or is there not enough room behind there to pull the core out without still needing to pull the dash?

    DISCLAIMER: I am making no promises to reward anyone with beer and hot chicks for a winning solution ... although I would gladly buy anyone three cases of beer if they're willing to just come down and swap out all three heater cores for me. :D
  15. I dont know what to tell you dude. The article was meant to be helpful. Sorry if it isn't for you. I hope that you do get your issue fixed sooner rather than later if it is a major problem. I'm going to to have have a beer and oil my torque wrench.
  16. Honestly I think it would've taken longer trying to dremel a hole out of the side of the box instead of removing 2 nuts :shrug:
  17. There is no reason you need to remove the dash completely. I remove the center console, all necessary dash bolts and drop steering column. Pull the dash away from the firewall. Like a couple others have said, remove the two bolts that hold the whole heater core assembly on to the firewall and open it up. The bolts look like the one in the picture with the blue caps. The big long one under the caps. Then all you have to do is open it up.

    With that said, it's still a PITA and takes a couple hours(beer breaks). This thread should definitely help.
  18. Wish me luck guys, I am starting on one in about 10 minutes. My buddy is coming over and we are going to rip his car apart. Niether of us has taken a dash apart before.
  19. The hardest part of the job was actually getting the heater core out of the box. It took forever to get out, and we had to wedgoe the right side open and muscle it out, but the new one went in very smoothly.
  20. i dont know what kind of ***** youre on but 2 hrs my a$$. me and a buddy spent a solid 6 hours doing mine start to finish on a completely stock interior. we even discussed your time frame and concluded that if you could do my car in 2 hours you could have my car, but if not you get 5 kicks to the nuts with no holding back.