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Discussion Starter #1
Ok... apparently, I'm leaking coolant into the cabin. My evidence for this is the slightly musty smell in the cabin, the _HEAVY_ anti-freeze smell in the cabin when the heater is on and the insane rate at which my coolant overflow resevoir empties itself. Now, my mechanic honestly thinks I'm nuts to consider replacing the heater core instead of the car around it, but I can't afford a new car right now, and I can't afford to pay him the roughly $900 cdn to fix it for me... and besides, I like my 'Blazin' Bull'.... I know for a fact the rice-burners don't like it much.
:chili:

So, what do y'all think?

Oh, and for the details on the car...

1993 Taurus GL
3.0L V6
314K on the motor
 

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Holy crap, that's high mileage! That sounds a little excessive for the heater core replacement. You could try to fix it yourself, but I don't know how hard that would be. It looked hella easy on my dad's Escort, but then again, that car was built in a time when people actually fixed their own cars.
 

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A heater core replacement at a Ford Dealer should run you around $500 -$550, I've had my heater core replaced three times... November of '03 & March of '04 at Fall River Ford and August of '04 at TASCA Ford because the first dealer to a half a$$ed job on the first two times, and didn't remove the entire dash to access the Heater Core and forced the new core inplace and didn't look up any Technical Service Bulletins. I'm lucky it's been covered under warranty,and I had a better Ford Dealer do the work this time around.So just make sure they do the job right the first time and follow the Technical Service Bulletin #01-15-6 for Repeated Heater Core Failure. Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Okay, well... I've gone through the Haynes rebuild book, and it's no bloody use for an explanation for how to get the dash off, but I think I can pop the core out without having to take the dash apart...

And I think I'm gonna try and get a heater core from the wreckers... cheaper, for sure, and honestly, I need to save the money...

Actually, I'm used to higher mileage vehicles... my mom's old '81 Farimont have almost 1.5mil km's before it died... and only 1 engine rebuild. It died in 98.... and I put several rounds into the block to make sure it stayed dead.

I hated that P.O.S.
:p
 

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I have a 94 Ford Taurus and just recently had the heater core replaced. I was charged around $450-$500. My husband looked into doing it himself, but according to my manual we would have had to go through the dash and it does take a good amount of time to get done.

Good luck.
 

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I did the core in my 1986 Gl. several years back. I've been a mechanic for about 20yrs, and have seen it done numerous times by others. The dash DOES have to come "out", at least enought to get into the A/C box, you DO have to evacuate the freon/refridgerant. I personaly would NOT go with a used core!!!! They are not that expensive, besides if you happen to get one that starts leaking after you have it in for a few months, would suck!! If you are mechanically inclined you could do this in roughly 7-8 hours THAT IS WITH NO KNOWLEDGE OF SEEING IT DONE BEFORE, I did mine in 5 hrs. Also,you have to watch out for dry rotted plastic parts/hoses, remember this cars is slightly aged!! You will be disturbing components that have not been messed with since the car was originally put together in 1993!!!! Things BREAK, even when you are very careful and know what you're doing!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'm not concerned about the refridgerant.. I went through a ditch almost exactly 1 year ago (October 10, 2003, to be exact) and drove out the other side... and no, it wasn't part of the trip itinerary... but I snapped the A/C coolant lines, and since the system drained out onto the pavement, I crimped off the ends and left it closed off, since I use 4/60 A/C... 4 windows, 60kph.

At any rate.... the way Haynes described the heater core, it sounds like it's on the passenger side of the cabin, right behind the glove box... but when I redid my heater core return and outlet lines, the connection point was in the middle of the fire wall on the engine side... that's an offset of at least a foot, although I didn't exactly measure it.

However, I took the glove box down, and I can see part of what appears to be the heater core... and if I remove the kick pan beneath it, and undo the bolts holding the core on, it will just drop down into the foot well.

The strange thing is, that I did trace what appears to be an antifreeze leak from what I think is the block rad return line, around the gasket... f you stand beside the driver side front wheel, and pull the air filter pan up and out, the gasket is right below, mid height on the block, and has a 2" I.d heavy rubber hose running to the top driver side corner of my rad.

And there's obvious antifreeze that's dripping own onto the frame and apparently evaporating from there.

And sorry I didn't mention this before, but if you have a price to include in your reply, please note what currency it's in... I'm in western Canada, so USD prices will have me hunting for exchange rates, and I suck at math. :blink:
 

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what you're looking at under the dash on the right side "glove box" is the evaporator core. If you look outside the car at that piont you will find the accumulator/drier assembly. you yourself just said it looked like it was off set about a foot, thats because you are not looking at the heater core but
instead looking at the evaporator core, get it? It's all self contained in one very large box that holds BOTH items. you need to pull the dash to get to that really big box.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Hmmm... strange, because the evap core doesn't seem connected in way, shape or form to the heater core... okay, so my heater core should, therefore, be immediately behind the centre dash console, right?

*poke poke* good thing I saved the stock lock keys I had fabbed this spring... I'll just start with pulling my deck and cup holder/money tray dealie, and then start peeling apart the rest.
 

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Yeah, that dash is definitely coming out.

I did the heater core in Vanessa in March of '03, and I'll be the first to tell you... it ain't fun. :( Took me the better part of 8 hours time total to do it, and the evap core does have to be separated from the rest of the system to get the heater/ evap box off of the firewall.
Unless you want to do this job again sometime in the near future, I'd strongly recommend that you replace the core with a new one, and manage to get a ground wire on that new core somewhere, to avoid the electrolysis issue. Also, removing the steering column and front seats makes this go a whole lot easier. :) Good luck with the swap. :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
WOOOOHHHHOOOOOOOO!!!!! Time to play a little game I like to call 'Gawddamn, that's bullet wasn't even close'!!!


I spent a couple hours going over the engine, from every angle I could manage, and lucked out... I popped my air filter pan out (noticed that I need to replace that too, mind you), and noticed a little puddle of coolant sitting below the engine coolant feeder hose... right under the coolant thermostat housing... so, when I started the car after work, I made sure I'd topped up the coolant level, then let it warm up... and waited.

Guess what was leaking?

If you guessed the thermostat housing gasket, you get a prize... not sure what you'll get, but you'll get something! :chili:
 

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Sorry about bumping this thread back up, but I thought I'd give everyone as update... I'd like to have pics of how I did the job, but I don't have regular access to a digicam.

Anyways, other than snapping the rear top bolt for the housing, and still having to get it out and replaced, everything went quickly... although, one important thing to remember is that the filter pan does need to come out for ease of access. I actually popped the box, out, then completely detached the rubber intake hose for the manifold and left that out for even more access... my only concern is that I bought a 192 degree thremostat, and it's missing the check valve.

I'll check into it right away, when I go to get the silicone and some new bolts... definitely worth it to replace it myself! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sorry about bumping this thread back up, but I thought I'd give everyone as update... I'd like to have pics of how I did the job, but I don't have regular access to a digicam.

Anyways, other than snapping the rear top bolt for the housing, and still having to get it out and replaced, everything went quickly... although, one important thing to remember is that the filter pan does need to come out for ease of access. I actually popped the box, out, then completely detached the rubber intake hose for the manifold and left that out for even more access... my only concern is that I bought a 192 degree thremostat, and it's missing the check valve.

I'll check into it right away, when I go to get the silicone and some new bolts... definitely worth it to replace it myself! :D
 

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I'm an amateur mech & did this several years ago to my 87 3.0 & am about to do it again. Hope this is relevant to your situation,
Used Chilton's & per usual graphics are tough to comprehend and instructions are lengthy but incomplete in key places.
Instructions call for dismantling whole dashboard, column etc. Not taht tough, just a very lengthy process. Took it at a liesurely pace, finished in a weekend. Don' t know how many hours but I recall it was well worth the savings.
New unit at AutoZone was then about $38. Do NOT go for used and research the electrolysis issue posted here I think.
Main thing for me was organisation. Lots & lots of pieces large & small. I tried to be very organized & methodical but still have a couple screws I have no idea where they go. Ziplock bags and shopping bags and address labels and 3x5 index cards are helpful.
A small battery screwdriver makes this a lot easier.
Careful of the dash. Mine was pristine when I started, not so now. damage the fragile underlying plastic frame and you get a crack in the surface skin.

I don't EXACTLY recall the deal with the evaporator. If I recall, there is some kind of frame/case holding both the H core compartment and the evap core compartment. Both are prone to condensate which has to drain out of the cabin. Sounds stupid and it is and if i evre get my hands around the neck of the fucking moron who designed it, he's dead.

Anyway it was nice to have a warm car & defogger after a couple of years without.
Sorry this is so amateurish, but I am extremely grateful for all the help I've gotten here, am trying to do my part and hope this helps someone.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Actually, it's nice to have a semi-coherent step-by-step procdure in the event that I have to actually go ahead and redo the heater core... I had to drill out the back top thermostat housing bolt, and after reaming the hole out slightly (I ratched the threads coring out the bolt) I slipped an M6 30X100mm bolt in from the off-block side, and nutted it off on the block side... 2 brand new M6 30X50mm bolts went into the other bolt holes... and I used something equivalent to Ultra-Blue non-hardening sealant for the gasket sealant...

I strained my coolant back into the system, and everything seems to be working smooth again. Next project, I need to fab a MAF adapter and slip some new intake pipe and a cone filter in...
 
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