Owning one (let alone two) of these beasts can easily become a full-time job. There’s always a list of outstanding things to fix, refurbish, or improve. Usually, the intimidation is worse than the actual job, and once you get in there, it’s not so bad. Fortunately for me, the mechanic that I depend on invites me to his shop on my Birthday. It’s a wonderful opportunity to tackle something intimidating, with the added comfort of knowing there’s a well-equipped shop and some master tradesmen about should things go awry. This year, I elected to tackle another (they are legion) coolant issue.; my front heater core has been emitting a coolant “whiff” for the last couple of years. Well there were no visible leaks, the coolant level was going down a little, and I could always smell it…time to get at it. Generally, the job involves removing the entire instrument cluster, dash, glove-box etc. Then, the heater/defroster “Box” has to be removed and split open to extract the “radiator-like” heater core. The bolts that hold that entire assembly to the firewall are problematic. The back (or is it front?) side of them is exposed and they corrode terribly. Even worse, the head is like a Philips screw or X.
Generally, I probably needed a few days as there are several other “jobs” that one should take care of once the dash is out. However, time was just not there as I had to get home in time for my Birthday Supper. Nevertheless, I’m now confident enough to take the dash out on my own at a later date and deal with some less-pressing stuff…I did manage to tidy up a couple of smaller items, and at least the heater “worry” is greatly diminished…
Here's the start of the job, with just the steering wheel and instrument cluster removed.
Now the dash is out...the big black unit in the center is the heater box.
Now we have the heater box out. Note the pinched heater hoses.
Here it is,pried apart and old core out.
This is the new core.
A lot of junk had to be removed...
I ran out of time, but got enough back together to make the drive back home.
More to come...